When I think of dancing, I think of him. The in-and-out twist of the Salsa imitated salt shakers, the two-step of prancing feet like playful lovemaking. He used to tease me about having no rhythm, about how our bodies bumped against one another awkwardly, hips colliding at the wrong time or toes being encroached upon.
And when, at a bohemian street fair I hear the singing of an acoustic guitar, the dancing spirit rises within me, the urge which the Puritan forefathers believed came from the Devil, but I know is God’s happiness itself.
I want to wiggle out into the sunshine and snake my body slowly up and down in an expression of glee. My friend Chris says he will dance with me. I warn him that my dancing is like a grade-school love note with more abandon and less finesse.
But as the smoke of spent music spirals skyward, I make no motion for the sun-lit patio, and neither does he. I think it is because I’ve been sitting in the heat for hours, because I’m not drunk and my ego isn’t numb with inebriation. But really, it’s because I am imagining the one whom my heart remembers. I recall us spinning in the streets of campus, jumping through the sheets of water from the Plant Park sprinklers, twisting in the pleats of my comforter sheets.
As the day passes and I think on his memory, Venus Jones beats on a drum. The Holy Spirit has a hold of her, she says. Dancing in liberating joy of the poetry, she sings