Cheek to cheek and toe to toe,
whenever graceful dancers go
smoothly passing while I stand by
feet motionless, with dancing eye,
jealousy may rear her head
as I wish that it were me, instead—
held securely in my partner’s arms,
guided surely away from harms
of other dancers’ straying feet
or jutting elbows I might meet.
Steered through dangers into bliss,
barely meeting the floor’s long kiss
as I soar and bend and sway and glide,
giving way to what’s inside,
the music comes to live in me
setting all that’s in me free,
stirring sadness at my core
and leaving it upon the floor
for other dancers to kick away
while only light parts choose to stay
within my heart as I dance on
from dark of night into the dawn.
I might feel sorry, sitting there,
no arms around me—only air.
Then I remember in the past
dancing nights I thought would last—
how all those partners have stepped away—
even the ones I hoped would stay.
Life has a way of leaving us
like hopeful riders passed by the bus
as it soars away with no seat left,
those left behind feeling bereft.
Then I look deeper and clearly see
one day that bus will stop for me.
Something heavy grows inside
where it’s not good for it to bide.
I scoot back my chair to shift that stone,
as I get up and dance alone.
This is a reblog of a poem written two years ago.The prompt was dancing.
“Clap hands,” they said, “Clap hands
to the music,” and we all obeyed
that 50’s and 60’s band
that we might have followed anywhere–
out the door and across the street into the ocean
like geriatric children following a Pied Piper.
As we had when the music was new,
we gyrated and sweated,
bumped hips, jitterbugged,
did swing and wild improvisation
at Palapa Joe’s.
Joe himself barefoot at the keyboard,
a bookend to Denise at the drums.
And we? We are as hot
as this February night.
“Oh to be young again” is not in anyone’s vocabulary,
for we are teenagers again below the Tropic of Cancer.
In the ocean or in front of it,
sipping the sunset from tiny cobalt glasses,
watching children move toy trucks down sandy roads
of their imagination
and teenagers elfin in the surf.
The sun falling falling farther northwards every day
until that March day we waited for every year when it sank
directly behind the offshore island.
Or this way?This way?Or this way?
This was the first lesson in the new girl’s dance class for girls age 10-14 in our pueblo. Cynthy, the instructor, did a great job and as you can see, the girls paid close attention and I think did wonderfully well. I could hardly stand not dancing along with them. (To be truthful, there was a big mirror in front of them. I stood a bit to the side in the very back and did execute a few of the moves, hoping they couldn’t see me. Then I realized if I could see any of them in the mirror, then they could see me, too.)
I’m very excited about this class and hope the girls remain interested. I’ll sponsor the instruction costs for the first 20 and buy their costumes. Then I hope after their first performance, other sponsors will step forward. Next, a boy’s class of break dancing or other moves that might appeal to them.