The last run of the day,
a pleasant glow of fatigue building,
descending from the high elevation sunshine,
my dance with the mountain winding down.
Then, rounding a hillock, I emerge
into a final open slope
and am stunned, gaping
at the beauty of the scene.
The clouds whose light grey tufted tops
I skirted as I skied above
now meet me in a shroud of glowing bronze.
Cast afire by the sun behind me,
incandescent filaments of mist
weave around white-tipped evergreen branches,
suffusing and embracing me with the trees
and the shadow-marked rumpled snow.
The moment will not bear my silence.
I shout aloud in happy awe, in reverence
for the sudden perfection of what I see,
for the synchronized rush of limbs and skis
as I turn and carve my way through this golden passage
consuming in seconds the vista that lay before me.
And yet—past trudging footsteps,
grey and sullen miles homeward,
details quickly faded and heartbeat steadied—
the smile lingers, and awe remains.
—First posted on Facebook, 1/25/11