snow death

[More snow information for your amusement]

I once killed my ears for an hour or so

every day after school in winter
the cross-country ski team
used to wax up and take to the trail
out back for a little scoot around
on our skis. Training it was
mainly to see the old Finn
pass us on his parallel trail.
He knew how to wax
he knew how to stride long
how to glide efficiently
each stride he took was a purposeful
easy advance for which he
hardly seemed to breathe.
Why we didn’t beg him for help
is still beyond me.
We were like babies next to
this old guy in his seventies.
He had lovely slender arched hickory
boards that were his magic carpet
we were grunting along on
skis made for downhill racing.
The cruelest cut of all came
the time I arrived back at
the autoshop that we skied out of
and they told me my ears were frozen.

I looked in the mirror
they were standing
straight off my head,
swollen, red, caked in
white frost a half-inch thick

Why didn’t I like
cross-country skiing more?

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About riverwriter

Poet, playwright, duplicate bridge player, website designer, cottager, husband, father, grandfather, former athlete, carpenter, computer helper for my friends, theatre designer, backstage polymath, retired teacher of highschool English, drama, art, a baritone singer in a barbershop quartet, who knows what else? wordcurrents is on Facebook: Doug also has a Facebook page, "Incognitio", related to his novels.
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