[Five pieces inspired by solo dance performances by the recipients of the 2008 and 2009 McKnight Fellowships that I watched at the Southern Theater tonight.]
Memory: the arrangement of emptiness into space. A fugue of small adjustments. The discovery of the familiar in the placing of hands.
To hold on to what is lost join a circle of repetitions. Pretend the clock is you.
No one is fooled.
Fragment of Adam
Only a madman would bring the moon roses. Epiphanies of the not-blue. Blood, rose, moon. A bouquet of tongues folded into each other.
What remains of the lover when the petals have been spilled? Only the beast Desire, eating raw flesh. Only the current that dances on the crest of the waves , marking the place where electricity drowned.
The weight of the world is carried on bent backs. This is politics: the suffering of women, the making of hay. A raised harvest of hands from which the sun rises, singing, beating down. The dance of the tree standing silent, proud.
Every note of this suicide is a beautiful dream. A soldier dances in the uncrumpled moonlight, his uniform held at arm's length. Like an enemy. Or a lover. All is fair. All is fair.
Long chains of cattle cars rattle the night. The damned are brought screeching to the furnace of hell. Death has a mind of metal, he weeps from rusted eyes.
In Hiroshima, the heat of the explosion turns walls to shadow, light to ash. The breathing door shuts tight. The outstretched hand leaves the air unmarked.
The names of the victims do not matter now that masks are mass-produced. Every skull a gesture of solidarity. A million photocopies of the one human face.