Monday, January 24, 2011

Ski poem I wrote years ago

Schweitzer Mountain

Our first time to ski downhill,

Uncle Brian coached Luke and I,

gliding backwards

like an expert swimmer

back-floats over waves.

He led us down the bunny hill,

and later, the Blue Square trails,

looping a long loose knot around the mountain.

We improved with the time

after time again

the long blue-white waves

cold and deep, bore us back

to the steady beach-like flat.

There skis leaned like umbrellas,

shading footprints filling

with fine white dust

from people in dark glasses

with wide boards on their backs.

After sunset we were getting last tips

at stopping up,

both of us watching Brian,

both of us sweeping toward him

the stinging spray of silver powder.

We made for him a foamy wake,

an almost perfect V,

ending at his feet

in a shambling tangle

of sprained joints and rented gear.

And Brian’s arm, a steady lifeline,

reached down into the turmoil

to pull us up from the cold breathlessness.