Magic Dance #poetry #earthweal

I try to imagine the labyrinth as a dance, but
I am not a dancer. Still,
I’m captivated by the idea,
those ‘rhythmical involutions and evolutions’ which
‘perplex the outward way’ with outward show:
beguile the time, look like the time, but I’m
simply a dreamer lost in the ‘tangled windings of my’ brain.
Sometimes I cannot see the wood, hypnotised
by the pattern of the trees
– that’s me:
make a decisive turn
decide, and turn
pick up the pen
write on:

the earth’s still burning and
my work is not yet done.

© 2021 experimentsinfiction.com. All Rights Reserved

Written for earthweal

I’m hosting a challenge over at earthweal this week, and the challenge is to rhyme or even dance our way out of the Anthropocene labyrinth. All of the lines quoted in the above poem are given in full in my prompt, except for the line in italics which is from Shakespeare (Macbeth, 1.5.62-63) and excerpt from Lady Macbeth’s speech:

Your face, my Thane, is as a book, where men
May read strange matters. To beguile the time,
Look like the time, bear welcome in your eye,
Your hand your tongue: look like th’innocent flower,
But be the serpent under’t.


Featured image: cavorite, CC BY-SA 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0, shows a reconstructed fresco of women dancing, from the Palace of Knossos (c.1700 BC.)

41 thoughts on “Magic Dance #poetry #earthweal

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  1. Yep, write on 🙂 There is a kind of dancing rhythm to your poem. For some weird reason I don’t understand it made me think of skeletons dancing!

  2. lovely dance in poetry and picking up the pen and sharing Ingrid.
    If I dance in the labyrinth, I’m miss the stillness.. the webs we weave.. love it.
    I relate to these great lines:

    “I’m
    simply a dreamer lost in the ‘tangled windings of my’ brain.
    Sometimes I cannot see the wood, hypnotised
    by the pattern of the trees”

  3. The rhyme of this piece is elusive and yet so lovely on the tongue, Ingrid! It flows as my thoughts flow, one to the next, and is a dance of words from start to finish. Delightful!

  4. A perplex challenge, for sure … and the art of Ariadne’s dancing floor is largely lost. (Guy Davenport likened Joyce’s “Finnegans Wake” to it, and try reading that beguilement.) Decisive turning is extreme for human psyches, yet Anthropocene solutions all are of that caliber, and it’s not just a personal turn but a massive collective skein dependent upon radical change. Your turning must inspire mine, and mine another and so on, and fast. ‘Tis dire and intricate and daunting, but if we don’t a maddened Minotaur Earth will devour us all… Thanks so for the challenge and amen for your poem.

    1. I’ve never attempted to read Finnegan’s Wake, Ulysses was challenging enough! Yes, one single turn won’t do a thing, unless it sets other wheels in motion.

  5. No, your work may never be done, but I believe you are up for the task. 💪🏼✍🏼 Ingrid, your poem incorporates things and activities I cherish, including the inspiration behind your poem. 💖 Thank goodness for the dreamers (and doers). Outstanding!

  6. I thought I had commented on this, but I must have seen it in my email, and forgot. 😀
    Wonderful job of working in the Shakespeare lines–I think our minds are always full of tangled thoughts. That’s what makes us such complex creatures.
    Your work may never be done, but you do what you can.

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