Poems Inspired by Belly Dance
Inspired by belly dance, the following poems are are written by Ellen Sander, "Shoshanim".
Heart of darkness
Sliver of snaking light
snaking from rump to neck
snaking from spine to spine
sparkles spear into the night
feet are beating
hands palpitating, drums
The snake she
winds from the beginning of time
from daughter to daughter, you and I
we dance this truth
we dance this truth
The stars shame us
with their multitudes and indifference.
I can see what I am not
in the amazing starlight
walking back to my room.
I do not sleep, I float between
a vague and pristine presence, learning
the difference between awareness
I could disappear and not meet
myself in recognition any more
my body moving in some
unknowing and emblematic design
every shift redefining pleasure.
I watch the tabla player
in awe of his shadow hands
that rake the air with
I am anointed with his sweat
and sacred incantation.
It is a dream dance, the flickering
rhythm's dangerous passage through
his core and extremities.
We meet our ancestors
in the rampant mystery
they love each other passionately
the stars envy us.
The drumming settles into silence, the
dance is over and the
pain returns once again to his hands.
Those who say only women bleed
don't consider battlefields
and soldiers of the heart
cowering under cover of
Funny how we reminisce.
The past is kind enough to bury
lines in the sand
dunes, berms, erect themselves
to hold the waters at bay.
A mind is a terrible thing to make up
and matters of blood and surrender
just abstractions of a noble and sensual politic
between torn sheets of newsprint and linen
where bedding the enemy
is reasonable accommodation
and sometimes it feels so good.
I think of Cleopatra in Caesar's arms
gasping at thoughts of glistening coastal treasures
literature and armies, teachers and, above all, art
how she must have grasped and urged with
warrior cries, sweetly pressed her lips on
the gates of history.
Never had the empire known a better night
We live their secret daily.
We'd do it if we could.
No lie. When the clothes of revolution come off
we relish the nudity of monuments.
Dance With the Wind
I like to dance with the wind.
It fills my sails
and opens my heart.
My skirt flutters,
veils soar and take me on their
We tremble like windripples
in the chill of twilight
not lingering too long
in the break between worlds
between twilight and dark.
The sand snaps tiny biting specks
against my ankles
like bracelets, they patter me
as if I am spinning
and then realize:
I am spinning.
I know where your gate is latched
I know where your sloop is anchored
I see the string on your kite,
looping in the wind.
I fly, I cry, I dance with the wind
and echo her breathing
that fires our souls
with spiritual wanderlust
into ancient, ceaseless,
Magnolia & Fog in January
The fog moved in so quickly
you said it looked like the rest of the world
disappeared around us.
The Magnolia was blooming, just
two or three blossoms in January.
Marvel though it is, you say that in
these are called Japanese Magnolias,
Of course. Unlike native blooms
that respect season.
Understanding is overrated.
But if the rest of the world
dissappeared, it would be
just fine to be here in the fog
and Japanese Magnolia
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