I rarely write poetry, but once in a while, a poem bursts forth. This is such a moment.
In the scarlet light of an abandoned dance hall at sundown
The woman dances alone, twirling as though led by a partner.
She dances alone to a tune only her ears can hear.
She dances alone but there’s no way to tell
If she’s happy or sad, or simply nostalgic.
For a moment in time only her mind remembers,
And the room echoes foot falls softened by slippers,
The kind that one wears from bedroom to bathroom and back again.
But here in this room she moves step by step
Dancing alone to music unheard by anyone other than her.
Ah, the stories her lightness of foot must enfold,
Wrapped up like presents strewn under a tree,
Awaiting an opening, but she keeps them hidden
So she can dance alone, dance alone,
Dance alone like a once-spry ballerina.
The music plays away in her mind.
The music guides her every step on the dance floor.
A wall with no gate fully surrounds her
To keep out the prying ones, the questions
She’s never been able to answer.
She’ll dance alone till the questions stop coming
And the dancing evolves into the only, the lonely, her sole occupation.