Racer - Poetry - Teal Swan Jump to content


About this poem:

This is a poem Teal wrote while she was a professional competitive ski racer. It is about skiing for the joy of it while waiting for her event to start and sitting in the snow at the top the race run, watching the other racers ski past her to make it to the course. It is about loving skiing so much that the risk of death doing a sport she loved, meant nothing because she felt so alive doing it. And how the sport had taught her to use her fear to her advantage. It is also about how much she loves the winter. The spiritual side of skiing!

I knelt down at the edge of the world, 
As the gravity issued warning, 
And counted through the sieve of the flat light…

A dozen of them scraping past me, 
Crushing the white before them into gray wrinkles in the snow.

My ski tips danced upon the hemispherical curve of the mountain, 
And I watched the clouds, watch me.

I tasted of the forefinger of winter, 
In the frozen speed I claimed.

And if the blood red color of life would have left me…. I’d not have cared.

I’ve made a life of shaking open the snowy pleats of fear and
Learning how to use… instead of merely own it.

For fear is like a fire. 
It keeps you warm. 
But it can also burn the house down.

And as I raced, I felt the world, as if for a second time.

On a snow covered mountain, 
At the top of the world, 
Your hands can hold transcendence in their gallery of reachable things.

And if you reach out far enough…
You can feel the season ripen past you.


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