North Pole holidays in Amsterdam
Hypnotized by the ice
I was told not once, not twice
You’re out of your head
You’ll end up dead.
For the first time in 15 years
I put away all my fears
And stepped gleefully unhinged
Even though something deep inside me cringed
On to the frozen Brouwersgracht
My common sense sacked
What happens if I fall though?
CRACK. PANIC. RELAX. PHEW!
I waddle out like a constipated penguin
I dream of walking all the way to Breukelen
But I get about 100 yards
Then my toes fall off and break into shards
It’s colder than a polar bear after a Brazilian wax
Then I hear the distant cracks
Louder and closer rumble the herd of stampeding skaters
Hands behind their backs, eyes colder than an alligator’s
They seem to glide though me
Like a warm whisky
Like a pack of huskies towing a fond memory
I remember it now like it was 15 years ago
With a single malt in hand and a gangrenous toe
Too cold to drink, too frozen to care
Even though I was about to eaten by a polar bear.
It was the North Pole on holiday in Amsterdam
And a Dutchman skating on the canal, with a pram
The Netherlanders have ice in their DNA
If they could, they would, skate all night, and day.
Adam[n] poem by John C. Richardson