dance

KEEP ON DANCING MEMOIR

 

*scroll down for a YouTube video*

 

Little sun-struck cloud

Floating on a tutu

Ballet shoes held on

By an elastic strap

She pirouettes

Dreaming of dancing as

The Nutcracker princess

Some day

Suddenly, “No money”

She is told

For lessons

 

Here are little girls

Strolling through school halls

Twisting, Cha-Cha-ing

Across a new decade’s

Boundary line

Ponying, monkeying, limbo-ing

Waiting for the boys to join in

Suddenly almost-teenagers

Arms wrapped around each other

Softly believing

“We could get married

Then we’d be happy”

Oh those boys of the beach

They knew the secret of life

 

Suddenly the dancing stops

As a new genre

From an older time

Takes hold acoustically

Words of protest

Arising from the smoke of weed

Shuttered eyelids

Heads nodding as

Young men and women agreed

 

And then incredible colors

Splash over us, waking us up

As Sgt. Pepper changes rock and roll

Changes us all

And suddenly the world alters

Letting in the Blues

Jazzing us up

Alcohol takes hold

And once again we dance

So close, not even a straw can pass between

And we move across another borderline

Pea coats, bell bottoms, boots

Replaced by Sci Fi platform shoes

Polyester clothes that

Researchers insist cause cancer

And we smoke

And we dance

And we drink

And we do whatever feels good

In this new decade of peace

 

And our faces become pierced

Bodies become a canvas for art

Good and bad

Clothing deliberately torn

Dancing is the banging of heads

Lots of lyrics involve the word “dead”

But we dance

 

Until suddenly, the dancing stops

The music stops

The rhythm stops

The melody stops

There is absolutely nothing

But a horrible chanting

An ending to the sounds we once knew

And loved

Little girl’s hair

Turns to gray

Wondering if

There is a way

To keep on dancing…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Degas, Dancer With a Bouquet of Flowers

 

The Gentrys, Keep On Dancing  https://youtu.be/HhqX_VdQT10 YouTube video

 

 

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FADING OUT

 

*scroll down for a YouTube video*

 

Earth pirouettes me past the sun

Innumerable orbits, yet the ballet’s not done

Seems merely an hour dancing on toes

Orchestra adagio-ing as my body flows

Time a frail leaf the winds once blew

Grim Reaper leads me in a pas de deux

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Darcey Bussell & Zoltan Solymosi in Black Swan pas de deux

 

https://youtu.be/VtEQ-BnNNl8 YouTube Swan Lake pas de deux

FADING OUT

*scroll down for a YouTube video*

Earth pirouettes me past the sun

Innumerable orbits, yet the ballet’s not done

Seems merely an hour dancing on toes

Orchestra adagio-ing as my body flows

Time a frail leaf the winds once blew

Grim Reaper leads me in a pas de deux

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Darcey Bussell & Zoltan Solymosi in Black Swan pas de deux

https://youtu.be/VtEQ-BnNNl8 YouTube Swan Lake pas de deux

“SO WOULD I”

 

*scroll down for youtube video*

 

Luncheon at the Slow Dance Inn

Decadent tangos in the afternoon

Artificially dark yet

Deep, meaningful glances

Pierce the dimness

Tingling nape

As you lift my hair

Hands cupping my face

Leaving no question

About the conclusion

As our lips caress

Heat seeps through

Sun-struck sand under floorboards

Warming our dancing shoes

And somewhere

The saxophone moans

But we are beyond

The music

Beyond dessert

Of the caloric kind

Drifting to the stairs

Rhythmic hips in sync

One thought in mind

A work of art

A miracle

Together…

 

© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

Jefferson Starship, Miracles, YouTube video https://youtu.be/xKBttQmhDBw

GIPSY KINGS CONCERT

 

(Mahaffey Theater 5-2-16)

*Scroll down for video*

 

Stranded

In a perverse time and place

DNA sings to me

In crystal-breaking tones:

Find the forest

Where your people camped

Among the trees

Guitars and violins

And percussive seas

Remember the dance

Slow movement among embers

All to the backdrop of music

Inhaled, with the smoke,

Then released

With the vanishing of pain…

 

© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

https://youtu.be/mifnMC_Kn1Q

 

 

 

KHELEL: WHY DO GYPSY WOMEN DANCE ALONE?

Dakini_Tibet_Guimet_21107

When there was no paper or pens for writing

And not many Romani knew how to read anyway

No money for paints and brushes and

Musical instruments were reserved for the men

(Although women could make a churo, a tambourine,

Tie coins or small horse bells together or

Make kastaneta from ocean shells)

How to create when materials scarce

Even for cooking or sewing

Khelel

Dance

The creation of steps:

Move left, move right

Kick a leg high

Undulate voluptuous hips

Tapped with the tambourine

Shake the bra-less breasts

Toss the head of thick, long hair

Close the eyes and be transported

To a universe where the

Ceiling is always star-lit

Embers flare as

A long skirt whirls around,

Stirring the air

Redolent with pine

No stench of poverty or abuse or bigotry

And if by nurture or nature

This female freedom is passed along

Some form of a genetic chain

Whether living in Eastern Europe

Without water or education

Living on the road in Western Europe

Or living in American-dream homes

Slaving nine hours each day for

What passes as a wage

We women

With even a drop of Romani rat—blood—

Continue creating with our feet, hands and hips

Yes, it would be heaven to dance in the arms of a beloved

But that is not possible for many

Fiercely independent

Some of us dance for money

Some of us dance for audiences

Most importantly

Most of us dance for ourselves

Dancing in secret

A careful choreography of

Flamenco, belly dancing or

Even Jazzercize

Drawing lines and filling them in

With the finest of oils:

Scarlets, royal blues and purples

The black of night and the

Gold of the noon-time sun

The floor our canvas

The lines our charcoal

The paints our beating hearts

Of happiness in the

Joy of the dance

Alone…

© 2015 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

LIFE’S OKAY TODAY

peace love music

Dazzling in plastic

Evil Eye earrings

Swirling around in

Black polyester

Gliding in knee high

Shiny vinyl boots

Frizzy silver hair

Framing an aging

Yet sun-beaming face

Singing beloved

Rock and Blues and Folk

A sliding glass door

Shows her reflection

Happily laughing

Because life is fun…

© ViataMaja