Brief moments on a glacier


The wind is a sculptress, her canvas, my face. She carves, she carves, she carves.



Sound is what hits me. Nothing. Then squeak squeak creak. Nothing. My gasping breath. Gone from never-before to done-this-always in a day. My left heel lifts. Left toes push forwards through boot — slight twinge of pain — and ski slides. It fits snugly into the track others have carved for it. Thud my heel lands back on the ski as my right hip drops and my left hip rolls. I feel ski grip the snow reassuringly as, fleetingly, all sound vanishes again. My right heel lifts.



Every snowflake is a galaxy. Each milky way not milky-white but burning-bright. I squint into one and spiral twinkingly down a black hole before bursting back out on the other side of my retinas. I sway, but I stay in the track.



Yet I don’t feel small here. In their vastness is an offering: grow. Expand your edges and let them grow fuzzy too. Until all is snow. Until all is white.



She came to a stop, as did he, in her tracks.

“Did you hear that?” she said.
“What?” he said.
“Exactly” she said.


All photographs by Adam except the last by Dave Hollinger.
Thanks to Dave and Alpine guides for the path.

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