Skiing is a mode of living:
Life is now, an affirmation,
time in motion and elation.
Carpe diem ! Life is skiing.
Skiing is a state of being: happy trance
in blinding light or blanket mists,
on perfect runs or frozen pistes :
a drugless high, a game of chance.
The mountains are alive with skiers striving
strenuously for citius, altius, fortius —
not pausing for the vast, majestic views,
just racing on — and not arriving....
Reckless in vitality, never relax —
We jump and fall, we rise with youthful hopes,
in fast and furious dance we take the slopes,
we laugh and race the blues, the reds, the blacks!
We laugh and ski and merry be
and merry be, Oh! how we ski!
We laugh and sing and merry ski
those minefield moguls wild and free.
So wild and free, hors piste we dare,
while magic lies upon the conifers,
the winds composing their own verse,
and sundust glistening in air.
The broken rock asserts itself on high,
attaching to the blueness of the sky.
Black cliffs pierce through the whitest snow—
and higher glides the black jackdaw.
The virgin snow looks sugar sweet,
like icing shaped by colder winds
that whirl at night until they meet—
in twisting dance around the peaks.
There blue-green glaciers silently regress,
their rigid walls disguising danger
in sheer beauty — broken crevasses
and crystal castles dazzling every skier.
Enticing ice builds blocks of rugged ruins:
Glaciers — witnesses of generations.
Perspiring mountains in the flaming ice
wield edges sharp as swords of paradise.
We gaze upon the rabbit’s trace
which noonday heat will soon erase.
Its imprints seem so blue upon the white —
its daily search for food in winter’s plight.
Below in valley villages the alpine cows
find shelter, while their bells with chapel bells
resound. There too the pious peasant dwells,
still one with nature through primeval vows.
Behold the alpine chapels with their spires,
the snowbound chalets with their pinewood fires.
Tonight we drink vin chaud and can relax,
but now we race the blues, the reds the blacks!
Alfred de Zayas