A Short Account of the Japanese

Still in step, arm in arm, the Japanese
do nothing, not even
skiing, alone.
Sailing them up like swallows the ski lift
locked to one pace
controls the spaces
between the bodies floating. Such a gift
must have been invented
by the Japanese!
Boys and girls wrapped carefully in sportive
uniforms, like gifts strewn
in the tinsel snow,
they plummet and traverse and do snowplow
turns together, never
falling and never
stepping from line: until at last they go —
whoosh! cartwheels— losing their
balance together.