Just Dance

Image by Myriams-Fotos / Pixabay

A magnet on my refrigerator reads: “Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we’re here we should dance.” A good reminder.

Between this post and the last, we lost a much-loved member of our family to a sudden stroke. As sad and unexpected as that was, it helps to reflect on the kind of person he was, his outlook toward life and his sense of humor. We draw some comfort from the fact that he lived a life full of adventure.

We raised a glass to my brother-in-law the night before last when we went to a local café for dinner and an evening of traditional Irish tunes. Each month, a group of musicians bring their guitars, violins, flutes, accordions and other instruments and gather into a circle for a “session” like you’d find in most any pub in Ireland. Occasionally, someone in the group will offer a song.

Before the pandemic, we’d often see a familiar group of folk dancers sharing a table. Later, they’d get up to dance to a tune or two. Occasionally, a young girl who’d been taking lessons would get up and step dance to a Irish jig or reel when her feet were called to the floor.

It’s good to hear the music again, be in the company of familiar strangers and see the joy in dancers finding their way back.

I’d like to share a favorite poem with you. It was written by Mike Tuggle, (1939-2017) a former Sonoma County (California) Poet Laureate. We miss him dearly.

This One Time

Once in a lifetime it might happen
if one loves dancing enough
and is lucky
and all the elements conspire,
that two bodies will meet
on the dance floor
and begin, immediately, dancing
in perfect synch,
as if they were born to dance
to this particular music
on this very dance floor
this one time. . .

Whatever music it was, I don't even remember-
bass-heavy reggae
or samba's short circle and sway-
but my body remembers the way
when it moved, she moved
and the world moved perfectly around us.
Dancing for dear life, we broke out
of our bodies, becoming the shape of the song

and when the music stopped and it was over
there seemed nothing left to say.
My once in a lifetime dancing partner
went her way and I left with my wife
who didn't speak to me all the long ride home.

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