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Location: Midwest, United States

Friday, April 07, 2006

Let's Dance

I offered a few musings about dancing a while back. Thoughts of dancing course through my gray matter often. I think it’s because dancing, to me, seems a perfect metaphor for life. How I wish we could all dance through life!

Here’s a poem I love dearly. It’s called:

Homage: Doo-Wop
By Joseph Stroud.

There’s so little sweetness in the music I hear now,
no croons, no doo-wop or slow ones where you could
hug up with someone and hold them against your body,
feel their heart against yours, touch their cheek
with your cheek – and it was OK, it was allowed,
even the mothers standing around at the birthday party,
the rug rolled back in the living room, didn’t mind
if you held their daughters as you swayed to the music,
eyes squeezed shut, holding each other, and holding on
to the song, until you almost stopped moving,
just shuffled there, embracing as the Moonglows
and Penguins crooned, and the mothers looked on
not with disapproval or scorn, looked on with their eyes
dreaming, as if looking from a thousand miles away, as if
from over the mountain and across the sea, a look
on their faces I didn’t understand, not knowing then
those other songs I would someday enter, not knowing
how I would shimmer and writhe, jig like a puppet
doing the shimmy-shimmy-kokobop, or glide from turn
to counterturn within the waltz, not knowing
how I would hold the other through the night
and across the years, holding on for love and dear life,
for solace and kindness, learning the dance as we go,
learning from those first, awkward, shuffling steps,
that sweetness and doo-wop back at the beginning.

* * *

I mentioned earlier that I am not overly burdened with regrets. I’m not. I am, however, possessed of wistful dreams. Here’s one: I never danced the night away with “Amazing Woman.” Sigh.

Such a pity. We were meant to dance.

* * *


Blogger Green-Eyed Girl said...

Dancing the night away, yes, yes, yes. That's a beautiful poem that'll stay with me. The ones who watch are an integral part of the dance, aren't they?

Sat Jan 13, 08:27:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ah, i know those dances, with the elders looking on. we used to have them in the basement of the old greek church. the parents, aunts and uncles, always smiling, watching, nudging eachother. oh it was so much fun. lovely poem, warming thoughts

Sat Mar 07, 05:15:00 PM  
Blogger PattiKen said...

Oh, I think I know that poet. Surely he was there in someone's garage on one of those hot summer nights, when we all gathered with our stack of 45s and swayed to the Five Satins singing In the Still of the Night.

Sun Sep 11, 01:21:00 PM  

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