{Tue 27 February 2007}   Song and Dance
Song and Dance

Oh, grey stone steps! My steps are grey;
They heave like schoolboys from their play
When duty, duty, duty, calls
To “brighten lives” in Hades’ halls.

Their lino path invades my shoes;
Its disinfectants now suffuse
My squeamish toes, but measured pace
Seeks out the chair. The audience waits.

A faded circle: knitting, shawls
And blankets shuffle—time now crawls
And settles into atrophy
As, shallow-breathed, I sound a key.

This note-struck hour now adds itself
To sighing streams of time which swell
Past bleary eyes that bloat with tears
And shout at slowly shutting ears.

Stripped to the lip-read sound of noise,
This young and strong and destined voice
Must gentle now to songs of yore
That echo down love’s corridor.

Must stroke and soothe and smile—but, Stop!
What floating muse impels her up?
Urgent, she battles Wheelchair’s clutch:
Rises, surprises me with touch!

Recalling love, her arms wrap round
This startled beau. Thumbs tap: she sounds
The years on me, lifts chin and heart
And cocks her arms for Charleston start!

ggwfung says:

this is nice. It’s warming to see “technically” correct poetry in the blogosphere :-) too often the art is lost amongst the meaning.


Tia says:

ooh, I so agree, ggw! I’m glad you like it.

Eyal says:

Nice poem.
Very rhythmic and full of images!

Guillermo says:

i loved the poem. i also think it’s a beautiful journey for the poem to have had from 94 till 07 to be complete. who says that inspiration should come in one sudden wave?

Tia says:

Hmmm, waves come sometimes, but in my life it’s definitely been mostly spurts and trickles… and quite a few dry patches!

rel says:

We must take our pleasure where we can find it or enjoy not what is left to us.
Beautifully crafted.

Tia says:

Thank you, rel!

gautami says:

Great rhyming there. I found it very rhythmic too. It has a song like quality.

Parallel Streams

Chris says:

I never take the time to write with so much rhythm and rhyme anymore but your poetry is brilliant. Especially liked “And settles into atrophy
As, shallow-breathed, I sound a key.” Great job.

Tia says:

Gautami, Chris, thanks for the positive feedback. It’s wonderful to know that people enjoy it and I really appreciate your bothering to say so!

mary says:

Wow. I love the rhyme scheme. It’s not sing-songy, but genuinely good. Thank you for sharing.

Tia says:

Thank you, Mary!

This reminds me of something I wrote about sacred dancing.

Tia says:

This poem is based on a true story told me by a singer in South Africa. In a way, I suppose the old lady’s response to his song seemed miraculous and transformed that hour of song into a sacred event!

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