DEAR PINA,—Part One

I wrote this after seeing a dance performance by that name, choreographed by Hannah Dennison, in honor of the late Pina Bausch.

This is my
grandmother’s suitcase.
It’s mine now:
a blue apron,
sensible shoes,
a string of amber beads.
I know how to speak.
To get up I fall down.

Inside this skull
the shadows flicker.
The bones
are locked with words,
The shadows jabber.
Too many chairs.

I can watch, O yes.
I will watch for hours.
Teach me to run,
to sweat,
teach me
to breathe.
I gesture madly
with ink on my hands.
Give me satin dresses,
give me high heels.
My fingers hurt.
Give me fire and
wings.
I want lemons
and a yellow scarf.

Open me to swallows,
the light behind the walls.

Please, please.
I cannot stop crying.
Please.  I never
learned to dance.

 

 

 

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