“What The Body Remembers”
One step, another – then a few steps together.
I learn to walk, anew.
The body did not remember this habit of movement, one foot in front of another. There was no intermediate crawling, this time. Dancing was hardly a distant memory: trapped inside, it had no outlet in a body that hardly understood that it could walk, once.
I had learned with such joy, such amazement that I could with a flick of a wrist and a tilt of my head, match a lilt of music with expressive eyes. If the audience thought I was heading stage left, I was really moving stage right. Push…and create tension – let go and pull…and it doesn’t end, this movement. It keeps on going, push, pull, tension, relief - and they watch, mesmerized – and their wonder invokes Someone.
Such is the sacred trust created between an audience and an artist: follow me, trust me…and I’ll lead you a true way.
Forget an appreciative audience; true adulation comes from a guide, a guru: the satisfaction of another step learned, better executed than during the last round of instruction. ”Toe, step, brush…(hold)…step, toe, step and position.
And again, and again. And once more, and again. And repeat. And practice, and step…until it flows.
The mind takes over, at some elusive point in the repetition, and it’s no longer a mechanically delivered from my body, but emerges quietly from within.
A saunter and a skip, a beguiling sashay: I walk once more, my arms swing free, no longer crutched in desperation. I sense that the dance is ready to emerge once more, and after another measure of patience, I can do it: a small series from no particular piece, just more and more complex sequences gilt with just a glimmer of grace, even less nuance. It is all that I can muster – for now. But it is, indeed, dancing.
Without thinking of it, my body has bent at just the right moment, just after the step, to create tension and to release – while my eyes slide and carry the audience’s attention away from where they want to take it, and right where they must take themselves.