3.Avatar Review
     A Review of Poetry, Prose, and Art - Summer 2001

Disquieting Dance

Poems by Paula Grenside

His words tiptoe onto the stage—

Like Degas' ballerinas, long stemmed thoughts
crowned with chiffon petals stir, leap;
they skim the mind, flicker, bend and bow—
The audience of my heart applauds
such graceful moves—

The curtain falls, words undress thoughts,
they wear scarlet silk for a flamenco,
temples knock castanets, blood flounces sway
in hectic tip taps, eyes drown
in the magic—

A twist, a tighter grasp at the cortex—
All cerebral cells gather in rhythmic bump
to the cadence of a tango; my head spins,
mouth gasps for air, the dance engages
body and brain; while bending backward,
my dreams sweep the floor—

Thoughts go fast, turn round and round,
in Black Danube waltzing on a mind
that cannot keep the rhythm;
chaos replaces harmony, I step on my own feet—

My mind, blank, listens for a sound ,
a rattle, a beat to say I am still alive.
In the back stage, thought-dancers are stiff
puppets strangled by wordstrings—

His letter's close: a notice cancelling new performances—

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