June Winners!

Keep Going


Lungs screaming. Ears ringing.

Dig deep. Keep going.

The metallic taste of blood.

Grit teeth.

Just to that tree. That lamppost. The next.

Nearly there.

One. More. Push.


A gush of air. Relief.

Gathering speed now.

Wind whispering in whirling wheels.

Sweet breeze kissing my salty forehead.

Stinging tears blur my vision.

Tears of pain. Or joy.


Fields, trees, morning, dusk…

Colours dance. A watercolour dream.

Another hill.

Head down.

Keep going.


© Helen Ross-Smith 2017

Tweet Helen  @h_rosssmith

Helen wins the painting Bleak Beauty (above) which triggered the idea. The following was her feedback and you'll see how impressed we were:

Wow. Very effective!

I've been there, I've struggled

and I'm so grateful now to have a car.

I feel you've really got inside the character on a bike.

Yes, cycling in the fresh air is wonderful but bloody hard work. As a piece of writing it works well in poetic form, accentuating the repetitive nature of the physical effort, the shortness of breath, and describing the determination and discomforts as the feelings come and go.

Thank goodness you've punctuated it so precisely too.

Well done, thank you.

Bern Ross