Dance and poetry share a long association. Terpsichore was one of the nine classical Greek Muses, and song and poetry accounted for most of the others. Dance has been called, more than once, poetry in motion. Some of the great artists of all time have been dancers, including people like Vaslav Nijinsky, Martha Graham, Josephine Baker, Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly, and Donnie Burns. And that’s just in the last century, according to some lists. Write a poem that has some relation to dance. It might be about a certain dancer, or dance, or the art of dancing. It might be about why you love dancing, or hate it. It might be about talent, or the lack of it. Or it might be about activities that have the feel of dance but are not, such as the movements of athletes or the motions of flowers in the wind. The floor is yours.



You all know a gal named Marie
Mid-fifties and white is she
She makes no exception
For ball or reception
She just can’t cut loose and be free! 😀

© copyright Marie Elena Good, 2013



Here, in a room filled with mirrors and barres,
she flies from the floor and leaps to the stars;

her body becomes the song and the story
of dreams and defeats and glimpses of glory;

her face, devoid of paintings of fashion,
still plays each emotion with power and passion;

her arms reach beyond the vast, limitless space
and draw in the air every note in its place;

her motions describe every nadir and crest
in the turn of her hip and the curve of her breast;

her legs are both pillars and tension-filled springs
that marry her movements to melody’s wings

and her feet, the tendrils that touch her to Earth,
are loosers of lightning and makers of mirth.

Still, the beauty she makes of depression and bliss
is nothing compared to the beauty she is

as I watch her prepare for a trip to the stars,
here, in a room filled with mirrors and barres.

© copyright 2013, William Preston

309 thoughts on “PROMPT #122 – INVITATION TO THE DANCE

  1. Nature’s Autumn Dance

    The clouds are come and Nature’s in a whirl,
    Changing her gown from dusky green to gold
    And red and orange, with leaves enough to twirl
    Around the world to counteract the cold;

    She quivers, rustling her vibrant gown,
    And all at once it starts; her breath comes fast,
    It whistles through the trees and reaches down
    Seductively to touch and sway the grass;

    Her body moves, a lovely, rhythmic dance,
    The world’s ablaze: her colors overcome
    The mist and rain and hold the cold entranced;
    She whispers softly, boldly, “Autumn’s come”.

    And when, at length, her dance comes to a close,
    Her voice still lingers, hidden in the snow.

    © Copyright Erin Kay Hope – 2013


    As September draws to a close
    excitement and anticipation mount.
    The long-awaited day arrives
    and Strictly Come Dancing* is back.

    Swirls of sequins and long slim legs;
    rippling muscles on bare manly chests;
    overweight but game twirlers,
    glorious athleticism,
    rhythm and drama,
    grace and beauty,
    humour buts in with inept steps.
    All is fuel to our enjoyment.
    Four weird judges wave their arms,
    bandy words with gay abandon
    but in the end justice prevails
    and by Christmas we will vote
    the best pair of dancers
    from an eclectic bunch.
    It’s over, and we sigh.

    * The British equivalent of Dancing with the Stars

  3. Dance

    Dance is solitary joy
    grief, displayed. Dance is pain dissected.
    Dance is desire in a public place,
    communicates the ghosts of fingertips.
    Is worship, moving.
    Dance is praise and begging.
    It talks
    where it gives direction in a pollen swarm.
    Dance is scientific, has exact edges,
    scalpel-sharp, in hard shoes. And is bare
    as goats on a hillside, satyrs
    on patches of budding moss. Fantasy.
    Sunlight on water,
    light gathered and it’s spill.
    Dance is breathing, in


    Two left
    feet are not neat
    when they are size fifteen
    and your entire partner wears
    size six.

    copyright 2013, William Preston

  5. In Heaven We Will Dance

    Right here on earth with two left feet
    We may not take the chance
    But certainly when life is done
    In heaven, we will dance

    We’ll whirl about among the clouds
    And leap in the expanse
    The air will fill with sweet perfume
    In heaven, we will dance

    The harp and lyre, the bass guitar
    Will lift us to a prance
    Our arms will stretch, our toes will point
    In heaven, we will dance

    The living colors swirl about
    Such beauty at a glance
    Excitement bubbles deep within
    In heaven, we will dance

    Our many partners will partake
    In the divine romance
    In perfect harmony we’ll sway
    In heaven, we will dance

  6. Dancing Stars

    “You must have chaos within you to give birth to a dancing star.” ~Friedrich Nietzsche

    A hippopotamus and gnu
    danced cheek to cheek; their pas de deux
    was all the rage in Forest Fair.
    Except, that is, at Lion’s Lair.
    A lion duo thought they could
    do better. (As you knew they would.)
    This lion couple thus began
    to shake a paw and dance Can-Can.
    A cheetah roared; then gave a shrug
    and jumped and jived a jitterbug
    with one quite agile puma cat.
    A young giraffe said, “Look at that!”
    She found a bear and cried, “Dude, gimme
    your big claw – and ready? Shimmy!”
    Two pachyderms each bowed most nobly,
    prelude to a pasa doble.
    Some cassowaries, full of pep,
    did ‘kick, ball, change’…and, travel…step!
    Encouraged, an old moose told squirrel,
    “Hey Rocky! Come on! Kick and twirl!”
    A rhino, in this spirit, caught
    a fox and squeaked, “Come on, let’s trot.”
    It wasn’t too long e’re you’d see
    a critter underneath each tree
    engaged in swaying to and fro:
    which turned into a TV show
    that is all chaos (with control)
    ‘cause dancing is its heart and soul.
    Hosted by star Chimpy Fallon,
    this show’s called The Wood’s Got Talon.


  7. Earthly Dance

    By David De Jong

    He takes the lead
    But I stumble and fall

    He holds my hand
    But I loosen my grip

    He shows the way
    But I stray out of step

    He speaks with love
    But I ignore His words

    He shows His scars
    But gives another chance

    He is my Lord
    Lord of this earthly dance

  8. Minor confession: My writing group is enjoying a residency in a lovely old home used for the arts. Last night, there was a wedding on the lawn outside. Alas, the temptation to join in the festivities overpowered a couple of us once the dancing started:

    Late to the Dance

    Peering from the upstairs window,
    we watched as the advance team
    set up the tents and tables, lined
    the rows of white folding chairs
    in the early autumn flower garden.
    From our perch we witnessed
    the procession, caught the groom
    stealing a kiss from a bridesmaid,
    smelled the garlic sizzling below
    as the kitchen team assembled
    the rehearsal feast. Leaning out
    we heard them exchange vows,
    saw the single guys checking
    their phones for texts, critiqued
    girls teetering in too high heels
    across the gravel walk, tugging
    their strapless dresses back
    into place. As we sat down
    to supper in the tiny kitchenette,
    we listened to the band below
    playing “Brown-Eyed Girl”
    and “Margaritaville” as guests
    sipped cocktails before dinner
    and dancing. Into our wine,
    we saw them see us, spying,
    distracted from our work.
    We started dancing before
    they did, up in our rooms, bravery
    increasing with consumption
    until we slipped down
    the spiral fire escape, first
    just perching around the corner
    watching, but lured at last
    to join the dance, evading
    those inevitable question:
    Friend of the bride or groom?
    Taking nothing but the space
    on the dance floor, we laughed,
    we danced along to Twist
    and Shout, winning at the game
    of How Low Can You Go?
    against revelers decades
    younger, pretending not to notice,
    then slipping back upstairs only
    after sending the newlyweds
    on their way in a sparkling blaze.

  9. Pingback: Two Voices, One Song | The Power of Words and Images

  10. Anchored
    By: Meena Rose

    I can’t help these tears
    That flow unhindered as I look on
    Trapped within this concrete body.

    You, so full of grace, dancing
    Twirling, leaping, dipping, skipping
    Expressing humanity fully.

    I can’t help these tears
    That smear the verses I have just written;
    Words now hollow and lackluster.

    You dance your essence;
    Imperfectly joyous, reverently flawed;
    Cracks upon your soul scarred with gold.

    I can’t help these tears
    For I recognize your journey
    While I shy away from mine.

    You dance for you and me;
    On a surreal plane where
    I finally feel light and free.

    I can’t help these tears
    As I accept that you are someone
    I will never be.


    Over at my site, I also share the collage I made during the 100 Thousand Poets For Change event.

  11. “WATCHING A BALLERINA REHEARSE”. Thank you for taking me there, Bill. My best friend in college was a ballerina. You definitely brought Simone back to me. 🙂


    Fifi Fofum danced the can-can
    with wild, unruly vigor.
    Her customers could always see
    the sum of Fifi’s figure,

    but then, one day, the gendarmes came
    and Fifi went to jail,
    but this perturbed her not at all;
    she enchanted every male

    until, one day, one gendarme leered
    too much for Fifi’s taste;
    she sought the nearest toilet stall
    and went there in great haste.

    The gendarme laughed to see her flee
    and said, as off she ran,
    “My Fifi, dear, the can-can can’t
    be danced within the can!”

    copyright 2013, William Preston

  13. Unfinished Dance

    All my life I’ve put in
    And then taken out my
    Right foot, left foot
    Right hand, left hand
    My whole self

    I just need to learn
    How to put myself
    Back in and then
    Shake it all about

  14. Inhibitions Fly Away (A Triolet)

    Shy and quiet, on the sidelines
    when the music starts, her toe taps
    dancing freely, with no guidelines
    shy and quiet, on the sidelines.
    Joy, unknotting her intestines
    on the floor, no more social traps.
    Shy and quiet, on the sidelines
    when the music starts, her toe taps.

  15. I saw something today which could lead to a poem. I am not sure, however, if I can create a new poem from my observation. Therefore I am presenting an old poem for this prompt. This poem was written as a result of the Poetic Asides Wednesday prompt (7/16/2008) to write for a particular audience. Since I had just written a poetic parody, I chose the Poetic Asides poets as my audience. The extended metaphor in this poem is an attempt to describe the process of parody. I put this on my blog on July 13, 2013.

    Poetic Meld

    Seek your favorite poet
    and place your foot upon his
    to create a poetic dance.

    The bigger his shoe size
    the lighter will be your own
    weight as you begin to follow.

    The wallflower notices little
    of his graceful gliding,
    so put him on your dance card

    and feel the pattern
    of his steps.
    He will romance you

    with his rhythms.
    Soon you cannot pull away
    no matter how hard you try.

  16. Savored Dance

    By David De Jong

    I love to sit and watch your dance
    Express your love in true romance

    Your feet glide o’er the kitchen floor
    My heart keeps time yearning for more

    Utensils stir as whizzed about
    Whisked in turn each proving your clout

    Caressed in love with apron strings
    Beauty you bring to dainty things

    Soft butter, sugar, silken cream
    Music to my appetite’s dream

    You fold them, mold them, till complete
    Then casually turn up the heat

    The scent of love flows through the air
    As I attempt to stay my chair

    Wafts of apple, cinnamon spice
    You bring the spoon to taste it twice

    Longing for your delicious treat
    I find myself upon my feet

    Then taste your love so amply sweet
    This savored dance, none can compete

  17. AUTUMN

    wind played the leaves seasawing through the air,
    fluttering down from wintered trees dark and lonely.
    It has always been so: how the season
    with swift ferocity intrudes itself
    on a foolish, unsuspecting month–
    September still holding on to green hopes.

    We two have seen it happen time and again:
    how from childhood we come to divide
    our lives in fours to accommodate each
    season, each winter-spring-summer-fall
    in which you and I have languished in our time.

    But it is autumn that brings the message home,
    lest we become disillusioned that time
    will carry us always in its cyclic play:
    season to season to season to season
    surviving forever in this four-part dance
    of nature. We can tell it in each other’s
    eyes, the way we move our hands, a slowing
    in our walk from season to the next.

    We never say it but it is true nonetheless:
    like those leaves of autumn we too flutter
    from the heights, arthritic, brittle, wind-tossed
    out of the spinning cycle of last years.



    the anvil on my chest
    is a heavy reminder
    that I will die someday

    but for now I ignore
    the blacksmith’s hammer
    pounding the hot orange spike

    pretend instead the beats
    are steps to the siren song
    I must dance on the way

    to a coda of silence



    Depression dancers never stopped.
    When one song ended, the next one began.
    Music served as a diversion,
    Something to occupy unemployment time
    Instead of the futility
    Of pounding the pavements for a new job.

    Sometimes dancers caught some shut-eye
    on the shoulders of their partners who
    supported them dance step by step
    In hopes of winning one of three top money
    prizes with which they might buy
    Some groceries to take on home to family.

    Most dancers dragged their aching feet
    From song to song, then in defeat limped from
    the dance floor towards home and bed.
    Even when the marathon dance was over
    And those contestants lay in slumber,
    Their dream selves danced on.


    • You’re on a roll here. This is another fascinating piece because so many old films of those dance contests are sped up, frenetic, whereas you picture them as the slow, dragged-out affairs they were, consistent with the tone of the Great Depression. Excellent vignette.


    Peace will come
    when we learn the tongue
    Of doves

    This heart beats
    Best in the company
    Of friends

    Of all my life’s lovers
    You are my pride
    And joy

    On the parapet
    Dancers wile away
    An interim of war



    on the ballroom floor
    darts of white strobe lights
    measle the faces of
    swing musicians
    jazzing at death’s door.

    my back against it,
    I ignore your hand,
    your dark eyes, your mouth
    smiling to drop my guard.
    I try hard to stall.

    you say, “Dance with me.
    Let your body go.
    Let the rhythm soothe you.
    The night is growing old.
    Hear the melody.”

    to sidestep a trap
    into the approach-avoidance
    dance of death, I take
    one small step forward
    and seven giant steps back.

    you work your charm
    delicately in
    the wooziness of
    post-operative sleep
    at the doorjamb of eternity.

    to the tune of
    “I won’t dance, don’t ask me,”
    fox trotters glide by
    effortlessly while I,
    body and soul, run for dear life.

    safe in my skin again,
    how odd sometimes I
    miss her flirtations,
    and catch myself
    humming tunes
    I heard back when.


  22. I suppose each culture has its own Lord of the Dance. The dancing Shiva, the nataraja, is one of India’s most beautiful examples, with so much symbolism built into it, a person could spend days reading the stories associated with a few of them. For that reason, I put a link at the end so you could see the statue of Shiva, mid-dance.

    Shiva Nataraja

    His right hand holds an hourglass drum
    that marks the pulse of all that lives,
    time to destroy and to create;
    he whirls and leaps to this heartbeat.

    He moves within an arch of flames,
    wielder of universal fire,
    the goddess Agni in his hand
    primed for destruction’s birth or death.

    Crested with crescent moon and skull,
    a cobra stretching down his arm,
    he dances a balance of bliss,
    a flight from wrong and ignorance.

    His hair spreads loose, like Ganga flows,
    a sacred river, sacred fire,
    as we become spirit in flesh
    balanced to conquer our desire.

    So all creation is made new
    with passion’s blaze from cooling ash.
    We rise to dance in fearlessness
    and take up our most righteous path.

    So we must dance our lives away
    all joy, all praise to life and death,
    poetry’s tikkatikkatum
    moving our feet to our own drum.

    Shiva treads ignorance, in joy,
    to cosmic rhythms, neutral, poised,
    unmoved yet moving, Lord of Dance.
    So symbols story circumstance,
    unfolding choices with each glance.

  23. Marie! I bet you can! 🙂

    “her legs are both pillars and tension-filled springs
    that marry her movements to melody’s wings”

    I love this part and the entire poem just flows musically. Beautiful write, Bill!

    I haven’t read any body else…I’ll need to return and write and read but I wanted the seed to be planted…maybe I’ll write one in my dreams. 😉

  24. Partners

    She had always been able
    to rely
    on dance
    to be-lie
    her moods.
    Turn on the radio and she’d
    be steppin’
    and forgettin’
    what had just brought her so
    Better yet,
    get dressed up–
    not for anyone
    but her and dance.
    Go out to one of those clubs
    that play current stuff,
    and all the way back
    to the fifties.
    Clubs with just a DJ,
    no cover charge–mixed
    crowd, pulsing to the current,
    the scene always harkening
    back to the recurring
    of moving and not caring.
    No matter how she got there,
    already up or
    crawling on glass
    the dance always saved her.
    Until the one
    she pulled and tugged
    into her party clothes.
    And when
    she got there–
    was strangely reticent to
    get out of the car.
    But the music would
    surely work its magic.
    She approached the door,
    heard the beat
    but was overcome by
    a foreign fear.
    This time,
    had stood her up–
    and without its power
    her feet could only
    take her back to her car.

    Ellen Knight 9.29.13
    write a ‘dance’ poem for Poetic Bloomings

  25. Dance Envy

    Dance starts at his center and works its way out,
    his heart thumping to its beat, joy pumping
    down his veins, informing his muscles, vacating
    his mind to let the music move him, groove him ‘round.

    His feet know what to do, his hips glide in,
    his spine wags like a tail, his head be-bops.
    He’s dance incarnate as the watchers watch
    and wonder if a beer might move them too.

    But he’s stone sober, drinking music’s wine,
    looking so happy, no one sees his flaws.
    They all want what he’s got, something so fine
    and brave, so quintessentially free,

    that they wonder if dancing is the key
    to make life laughing, floating, joyous Yes!
    so frolicsome, liberated from their shells,
    so bawdy luscious, taking pleasure’s hand.

    They wonder if their whole life will sit still
    watching and longing for a sound to sweep
    them to their feet, shuffle them around,
    all mindless movement, thoughts

    and opinions of others be damned, giving
    themselves permission at last to be
    breathlessly free as they were meant to be,
    keeping them glad, if even for a minute.

    • Jane, love this too! From “Dance starts at his center and works its way out” all the way to “They wonder if their whole life will sit still…” This point of view change-over is so delicately done, and wraps the whole scene up in an awareness that puts the reader up and over the event, looking down into the hearts gathered here.

    • “Drinking music’s wine” drew me into this piece, and your words and images held me there. Your stanzas have a beat, too. Wonderful.

  26. Band Stand

    He fiddles every Friday night,
    moves to guitar on other days,
    blue grass to jazz to rock and roll,
    rhythm and blues, he stands and plays.

    He’s versatile, and so he works
    when others get a gig or two,
    but he’s behind an instrument
    watching the ladies look and choose.

    He wonders what it might be like
    to set aside his work one song
    and take a woman by the hand
    and pull her close and move along

    to wherever dance takes couples
    to laughter, pressing breathless whirls,
    to knowledge moving bodies share,
    to love—or just impressing girls.

    He feels the music pull at him,
    the way it uses energy
    to transmit wonder with a sound,
    so he is music, wounded, free,

    his sweat the sweat of music’s skin,
    his words are sung with music’s voice,
    he plays his heart out, makes romance
    the dancers’ choice, for he can’t dance.

      • I do–piano, organ, keyboard, dulcimer, and a really bad autoharp. I remembered when my dad had a bluegrass band when I was a kid, but because he was always playing, he didn’t get to dance, unless there was another band. I danced with him twice in my life, both between sets.

    • This is an gentle but effective “sneaky fast” piece, but in the main it takes me to the bandstand and the perspective of the musician. You’re just rollin’ along here.

  27. This is one I did for a prompt some time ago. My dancing is the “Laugh-in” style – jerk and jump around… : )

    Song of Terpsichore

    light, lilting, lifting,
    fluting breeze, twirl, skip, dip, and sway –
    join me friend
    and dance, heady effervescent
    spring song of Terpsichore

  28. This is a piece I wrote about 15 yrs ago. I am using my brother-in-law’s computer for the weekend, and I didn’t think I could call this up. It was so on target, I hope it’s ok if cheat a little.


    The crevices in her face survive,
    bearing witness,
    marking the passages
    to the wisdom and sagacity

    that dwells within.
    No one knows how
    old she is. Even the oldest in
    all of the clans and tribes

    remember her
    being old while they were
    yet small—a legend even
    as she continues to live.

    Her skirt whirls,
    as though
    a living being of its own will,
    rising and falling with the air

    as if it is the pulse of breathing.
    And yes she spins—arms
    raised then lowered.

    Her capable, gifted
    hands, alive
    with timbrelled fingers and rattles
    shaking, all in time with the

    thumping of her
    ancient leathered feet.
    For she is dancing, chanting, singing.
    At one with her Great Earth Mother as she moves.

    And as she turns
    her face skyward,
    it begins to moisten—tears perhaps.
    Is she crying?

    But surely not
    enough to moisten also the ground
    beneath her dance?
    Ah, tears of joy then.

    For it is raining,
    single droplets scattered
    as though sparks from
    her flying feet.

    And then drops
    the size of grapes.
    And now a strong, steady

    that fills the chasms and
    hollows, the clefts
    and fractures, and slakes
    the thirst

    of both the Great Mother
    and her daughter,
    who still rejoices in the rhythm
    of the falling rain.

    Ellen Knight 4.28.12

  29. These are all such beautiful pictures of the love and power and place of dance, both around us and in us. Here’s my effort. I miss so much when I’m not here weekly. Thanks to all for your moving works.
    Granddaughter Dancing

    You are
    music on small feet.
    You are
    love that moves in tune.
    With arms that fly
    you float on by.
    I watch, I smile, and soon…
    your moves
    rouse my quiet heart.
    You see
    sounds I cannot see.
    Your cherub face
    glows with the grace
    of heaven’s liberty.

    You dance
    with freedom rare.
    Your song—
    embraced in air–
    makes my dreams whirl,
    makes prayers unfurl.
    I see your smiling dare…
    you take
    my wrinkled hand.
    Your muse
    and I both stand.
    Our dance begins,
    my old heart grins.
    I dance,
    we dance,
    at love’s command.

    • That first sentence draws us in so beautifully and dances us through to “love’s command”. Let her grow a bit and give her this sweet sweet poem. Love it, Damon.

    • “music on small feet”

      I’m emotional already tonight, having spent time in the emergency room with my 3-months-pregnant daughter, who had been in an accident. She is perfectly fine. So is the precious life within her. I got to see him/her squiggling, stretching, lifting tiny feet and hands, with his amazing little heart beating joyfully. “Music on small feet” made me tear up so much, I had trouble seeing to read through the poem at first.

      Damon, this is touching and utterly charming. Thank you so much for stopping in and sharing this beautiful piece, and for all your generous comments. And yes, you are missed. Warm smiles…

      • Oh Marie, thanks; I’m glad the poem really reached you at the moment, as I am sure the tears were drops of prayers, the soul-water of gratitude that your daughter and the coming grandchild are perfectly fine. And the overflow of a fountain of relief for you, whatever the circumstances were. Praying for their continued well-being. I promise, if life slows down I’ll be less spontaneous. This garden is a balm for life. It’s a church, a fellowship, a family, a gathering of friends who minister marvel by their words.

        • My eyes are closing on me. I was about to shut down the computer and go to bed, when I caught your message. You leave me speechless, Damon. Thank you for the warm smiles this evening. Sleep well.

  30. Not much of a dancer. It’s that two-left-feet syndrome, don’t you know. But, I did write one about dancing back in ’01 when I had an office on the second floor of the Manor (an assisted living facility in town).

    Happy With My Life

    There was a day when I could dance, now I can barely walk.
    I used to gossip with all my friends, now I hardly talk.
    My hair’s not what it used to be; the little that’s left is gray.
    People say I’m looking good, but what else can they say?

    There is an interesting story for each wrinkle that I wear,
    But most of them I can’t recall, and that just isn’t fair.
    I just don’t feel that I now stand as tall as I once stood.
    But that’s OK, ’cause if I stand at all, then I feel good.

    No longer do I “run the streets,” I push a walker ’round.
    I’d like to visit my old friends, but most cannot be found.
    You see, most of my friends are gone, I hope they’re up above.
    I pray they all were wise enough to give in to God’s love.

    My family and friends don’t seem to visit very much.
    A letter or a phone call would be nice to keep in touch.
    Activities around here can get boring after a while.
    At least the workers ’round here always greet me with a smile.

    They try to make life comfortable, but I just don’t belong.
    This little room is home for now; I won’t be here for long.
    But while I’m here I’ll do my best and do whatever I can
    I’ve got a better place to go, it’s up to God just when.

    My time will come one of these days, but I’m not in a hurry,
    I can’t let death ruin my life; it’s just not worth the worry.
    So I’ll keep working for my Lord, by spreading love and cheer
    ‘Cause I don’t know how long my Father God will leave me here.

    But while I’m here I’ll reminisce ’bout days when I could dance.
    And wish I could be young again, if I just had one chance,
    To wind the clock back to the start and do it all again.
    The only thing I think I’d change would be the very end.

    ‘Cause life is what you make it, and mine was really great.
    But now I’ve nothing better to do than sit around and wait,
    With other senior citizens, playing bingo, cards and stuff,
    All looking at our journey’s end, asking “Did we do enough?”

    I don’t know about the rest, but I’m satisfied with my life.
    I’ve had a lot of happiness, and my fair share of strife.
    But most of all I’ve had God’s love, and soon I’ll see His face.
    And when I’m gone, don’t cry for me, I’ll be in a better place.

    © 2001 Earl Parsons

  31. Seduction Of The Tango

    Mesmerized, I watch intricate,
    intimate steps of tango
    dancers command the stage,
    spellbind the audience. Each
    movement erotically teasing,
    sensually pleasing. Feet of
    dancers click, drawing bodies
    close, just short of embrace.
    Elegant costumes swirl, swan
    necks of women bent low
    by their partners, appear as a bloom
    extends its head on a stem.
    Mesmerized, I dream of dancing
    the tango, a red rose clenched
    in my teeth.


    Autumn leaves, falling leaves,
    drifting and gliding serenely;
    red and gold, orange bold,
    all so entrancing, routinely.

    On the ground, their soft sound
    tempers the chill of the morning;
    when the sun lights on one,
    warmth seems to rise without warning.

    Day after day they make my grey heart gay;
    year after year they’re there for me;
    autumn leaves, falling leaves,
    come once again to restore me.

    copyright 2013, William Preston

    NB: I can’t write music, but if I could, I’d write a melody for the above. The closest approximation I can think of is Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Edelweiss.

  33. Interesting…that the poet finds restorative power in the “death” of something green. Yet, if
    winters comes, can spring be far behind? So is a gentle reminder that we are all a part of something larger that never really dies. And the dance continues.

  34. Life Dances On

    I’ve heard it said
    That life is a dance
    A series of steps
    All choreographed
    Set to a rhythm that
    Can only be heard
    Through well-tuned ears

    Some rhythms rock
    While other waltz
    I’ve seen jitterbugs
    Ballrooms and hip hops
    Some contemporary
    Others ballet-like
    Mine dance is a stroll

    No two are alike
    But some coincide
    As is His design
    We each have a match
    Finding our partner
    Our dancing soul mate
    Can happen or not

    Life dances on
    Hear the rhythm
    Feel the beat
    Get on the floor
    And get in step

    Don’t set this one out

    © 2013 Earl Parsons

  35. This Dance is For Us

    A patch of wet on my white dress shirt
    A smudge of mascara on my collar
    Lipstick lingering on my cheek
    Palms moist from emotional sweat
    I smile and joke to distract from the moment
    My wife’s eyes well up with tears
    He patiently waits for the dance to end
    He can wait; this dance is for us
    “I Loved Her First”, opens the tear ducts
    As she tells me she loves me so much
    I fight back the tears as I tell her
    Just how much she has meant to me
    The song is nearing its conclusion
    We hold tighter than ever before
    This moment will stay with me forever
    I will cherish this father-daughter dance

    © 2013 Earl Parsons

  36. Dancing columbines

    Their stalks are slender, thin as blades of grass
    And like the grass, their partner is the wind

    Early spring, the sun still pale and gentle is the air
    That sets their petals nodding and now and then a swirl

    Among the rocks so carelessly strewn across
    The hillsides basking in the April sun
    Who would not dance to celebrate the return
    Of sun-blessed earth and motion in the skies
    That echoes flights of birds – their shadows
    Dance and turn above our rocky hills
    Now colored wild with flowers planted by the wind.

  37. Pingback: May I Have This? | Whimsygizmo's Blog

  38. May I Have This?

    The thing that makes you
    you? The heart and the gut
    and the root of it all, the long
    hot summer and the glorious Fall
           (from grace).

    Shall we

        trace the pattern of your
    tripsydoodle toes, hold our breath
             and then suppose
    the music might flow, fill in the
    middle notes?


           take my hand and take
       a chance, let’s cut our
      rug and sway our stance.


            sing and swing, ’cuz
       here’s the thing:
                sometimes there’s nothing left
              to do but



    She danced pink,
    on toes, joints and bones
    clicked and clapped by each weighty plié,
    each stayed ballon trimmed and tight,
    and she danced pink,
    tutu too cute she was,
    but too tutu tight for chaînés,
    and she danced herself pink,
    she and her coiled tail
    and snuffling snout
    spinning into a pale porky faint
    panting in her too tight tutu.

  40. Care To Dance?

    You feel the
    Shivers running up
    My back as you slip your arm
    My waist? I wonder if you
    Know how you make me
    Feel as we

    © Copyright Erin Kay Hope – 2013

  41. I’m sorry I haven’t been around to comment on all these fantastic poems. School has kept me occupied and extremely busy. But I love what I’ve read. Keep up the good work!! 🙂

  42. Pingback: Why Pigs Can’t Dance, a’Huh | The Chalk Hills Journal


    one, two, three – turn – and two, three,
as fingertips tempt, two, three,
    with glances (two) suggest, and three, 

    soft as silk sleeves (two) meet, three,
    our touch warm (two) meet, and three,
a courtship (two) dance, and three,
    take my (two) feet to bliss, and then (three)

  44. Pingback: One Two Three, Turn, Two Three | The Chalk Hills Journal

  45. Together

    And we danced,
    a magical dance.
    respect, graceful
    Simple enjoyment,
    silent sound
    humming around


    When a couple would dance minuets,
    I should think they would have their regrets
    if each dance, though refined,
    brought their passion to mind
    yet they barely could work up their sweats.

    copyright 2013, William Preston

  47. Been in a slump – sorry to wait till the last minute.

    Just Dance

    Sitting here feeling old and grey
    listening to Sinatra on the Bose
    you walk in the room, just like everyday
    but this time you stop, extend your hand.
    I say… what? You say, let’s dance.
    You pull me up and close
    I feel awkward, silly, out of step
    I’m not a girl anymore, too many miles
    and lines on this face – you just smile,
    you don’t care – you twirl me round
    the living room and sing with Frankie
    “cause I love you, Just the way you look tonight.”

  48. Pingback: Out of Step | Gene's Musings

  49. Out of Step

    Remember when you took my hand,
    we walked out on the floor?
    A grin struck wide, so full and grand,
    that day I would adore.

    While in your arms, I danced on clouds
    to music for our soul.
    Our souls would rise above the crowds
    and you would have me, whole.

    Then life went on it’s merry way,
    ever we stayed so near.
    But then a new song was to play,
    not you or I could hear.

    Now on the floor it’s like you sway
    with someone else, indeed.
    We’re out of step, feet in the way,
    our toes all want to bleed.

    Your eyes look round but never here,
    at me, the one you brought.
    Our minds drift off, both wild and free,
    this song is all for naught.

    Our arms, wrapped round, are cold as ice
    It pains us as we prance.
    Lets skip these steps, it’s not so nice.
    So why not stop this dance?

    • Well, I was snookered by the end-of-list bug again. The comment about the piece that fascinates me, applies here. Sorry.

    • Like an old-timey television screen going off and descending into that tiny dot in the center of the screen, you made the feeling fade from elation to dispassion.

  50. This piece fascinates me. The stanzas have a happy feel, but as the poem turns, the beat is at variance with the picture being drawn. Very effective.

  51. Pingback: The Dancers | Magical Mystical Teacher


  53. Pingback: Dream Catching | Metaphors and Smiles

  54. Dream Catching
    Hesitant to start the day
    sunshine hides away
    neath a misty morning blanket.
    Ghosts of grandfather trees
    reside behind this veil;
    great and gray-they sway.
    There’s a dance that’s secret-
    invisible’s made detectable
    by moisture glossed strings.
    Nature’s web-a net of droplets,
    it waves and billows silently
    a performance provoked by the breeze.
    Copyright © Hannah Gosselin 2013

  55. Pingback: Waiting, In Time | echoes from the silence

  56. 122 SEA DANCE

    Thought to sea strays, steadily plays
    as dancing waves slip ‘neath tide’s haze.
    Drawn in by moon’s relentless course,
    with its fervently controlling force,
    tide’s song slides over deep blue bays.

    Sand and foam whirls, and rides waves
    to lift channels of jeweled sprays.
    My thoughts blend with joys and remorse.
    Thought to sea strays.

    Slipping through rocks of by-gone days,
    thoughts, images in dancing sprays,
    call forth genesis of the source
    that scored my orchestrated course
    to peaks and shallows. I gaze.
    Thought to sea strays.

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