At first I threw my back into it,
bracing all my joints,
concentrating all my focus
on the stubborn clay beneath my palms.

And for a while it was a true battle.
The unruly tug and jerk of the clay
pitted against my steady pressure.

But slowly, as if lured by the electric hum,
everything settled,
spun so smoothly that I could not tell
the world was not still.

Now I coaxed and urged,
gentler, since we both spoke
the unspoken rhythm of the wheel.

The soft clay feeble and forceful
like the muscles of a heart,
a heart whose 200 rpm throb
sped faster than any human's.

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