Lines West: Feb. 8
Before the Ballroom Dance Contest
An elderly gentleman, his partner
absent, still practices, bright eyes up
to the left,dipping a nimble waltz.
If the Greeks were right, somewhere a woman
danced by herself, eyes keen in the empty air,
arms held to fit her absent half, delayed.
And this is how we’ve learned to step, imagining
music, pleased with our progress, putting our best selves
forward and turn, difficult as one, two, three.
— Robert W. King