Dancing Class





You get a chance to find a partner before the music begins.

Usually you are young and wide-hipped:

Mango ripe.

Slippery in the choosing.

Looking for wariness, bicep curls and safety

As one can be fooled by the scent of lust.


It’s life– then you dance:

It’s a hip bending back swaying errata series

And you wonder if you are making an impression.

Like the movie star ladies with heavy breasts

On the sidewalk in Los Angeles.


My mother says listen to the music.

Sit below men and look into their eyes so they are convinced

You believe in their strength and that you have none.

I sit below them listening and I see pouches of disappointment,

Eyes full of mistrust,

Memories of mothers like me,

And my hips are frozen: transfixed.


The music in life is temperamental.

I am a dancer

With no partner.

My hands are marked with large, fat veins

Transgressing each other.

Working so hard at refreshing me.

Sometimes, I push on one hoping it will back up,

Form a pool: an untapped source of joy

I might slide into for a time.

A kind of folding chair at the side of the room.

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