Living Proof

Last night I watched Southern Expressions –  observed the woman whose age and experience is etched upon her  face – is evident in her moving body. For, yes, she can still move, if moderately compared to earlier years. I speak of myself, for I am the one I watched flow  through my beautiful room – my art as background to my dance. My eye was critical at first, noting the differences since last I saw an on-screen version of myself. I saw the less slim form and the deepening lines around my smiling mouth. But, gradually, my obvious pleasure in expressing my approach to life  took precedence. As I spoke with the host, Ron Brown, I appeared relaxed and amazingly articulate to one who still recalls the nerves that assaulted me just prior to the filming. 

I moved beyond my initial disappointment, almost accepting that I really am much older than the dancer living deep within. This dancer’s heart still quickens at the thought of someday living out the dream of  moving audiences through her ability to move her body. Oh foolish one… Yet, didn’t I perform for the Milsaps Arts and Lecture Series a few months after the Southern Expressions taping? Didn’t I dance three dances and recite my poetry on a stage in an auditorium for the pleasure of an audience more aware of joyful energy than age? The moment far outweighed the effects of time. And last night as I finally let go and flowed with what was happening, I saw the breathing dance before my eyes – heard the verbal expression of the breathing dance and found myself at peace with that particular now.

Today has been difficult, isolated with my memories of last night’s dance. Initial doubts came back to haunt. Once more, I wept over the effects of aging, tempted to believe in endings – no more bright dreams to nourish the passing days. Most fortunately for me, and possibly for her, I phoned a friend who had not seen last night’s appearance. Kendall listened, understood, and also offered her own most glorious naked heart that I not suffer alone. In no time we were laughing over life’s abundant trickeries, and sighing deliciously over dances still to come.

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