The Dance


We catch our breath as the song comes to an end. In the steamy winter heat of the gymnasium, I can feel the sweat running down my ribs. The D.J. cues up a slow song, and the dance floor begins to empty. This is our first dance together, and our arms interlock like two clumsy wrestlers, struggling for position. She leans close, and I can feel her breath upon my neck as I look over her shoulder at the couples, turning slow circles around the gym. Eyes closed, arms around each other, they turn like planets in orbit around a newborn star.

My sweaty hand slips slowly down the back of her sweater and I can feel the heat radiating out from her body. Red and green beams turn like searchlights through the dark of the gym, as we dance our slow circles. I feel her hands pressing tight around my shoulders, and her dark hair clinging to my sweat beaded cheek. I feel her breasts rising, and falling against my chest, as she takes a deep breath. As the song ends, we turn our heads and our lips meet.

Her head tilted down, towards my shoulder, my eyes are open as we kiss. I am gazing into her right eye, the one which she has told me has been sightless since she was three. I am self conscious, but I cannot stop staring into its brown depths. I know she cannot see me, and yet I feel as if her eye is looking through me. Does it see my doubt, or my worry? Does it see my longing, and my fear?

As the D.J. plays another slow song, I taste the soft warmth of her tongue and I search her eye for answers. Secrets hide within its fathomless depths, but it will be years before I can raise them, like a fortune teller from a crystal ball. Tonight I see only the reflection of the disco lights as they search the room, like the spotlights of a guard tower, combing the dark, looking for the innocence that is dying to escape.

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22 thoughts on “The Dance

  1. Hi Tom,

    Just a few minutes ago, I logged onto Twitter, and there was your tweet about this post. Instant karma.

    One word: Gorgeous.

    A few more: I wish I had kissed that girl instead of just sweating. She even commented, “Wow, your heart is really pounding!”

    So I lived a little vicariously in this one. That’s OK too.

    Cheers, Rick

    • Thanks Rick. Feel free to live vicariously through me anytime you want. In fact, if you want to sit in for a week a la “Being John Malkovich”, I could use a little time off.

  2. Okay, it’s sweet that you kissed her, but I have to admit I kept yelling in my head for you to stop staring into her blind eye because everyone knows that the blind eye is how you get placed under the spell. Those weren’t disco lights, they were the incoming alien beams. Geez, Tom, this explains so much.

    On the flipside, my first kiss took place at a school dance. It all seemed terribly romantic, the end of the slow dance was coming, he whispered in my ear, asking if he could kiss me, I nodded, mainly because I was unable to speak. He kissed me, then my mother yelled my name because she had arrived early to pick me up. Good times!

    • It all makes sense to me now. So that dream I had with the bright white lights, and bald grey aliens with the “probe”, that wasn’t really a dream was it?

  3. Beautiful as always, Tom. Makes me reminisce about my first high school dance, when my first love stole a kiss from me at the end of a slow song. I still remember where we were dancing in the gym. Thanks for sharing šŸ™‚

  4. And see, at my high school dances, I was too busy trying to dance like MC Hammer to slow down and smooch. But my Hammer moves come in handy all the time now, so it’s good I spent time practicing those.

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