Our Capoeira

We’re not in Brazil here
beneath the green crowns of trees
and the endless blue of the sky
it’s a summer night in Toronto
still holding traces of sunset in its thin clouds
and this most benign of crowds
picnicking on the grass
waits for the dusk
with light in our faces

We are here for the capoeira
the dance of love, a fight to music
and while you take your turn on the drum
I am the first to dance
my arms flung wide, ready to lose everything

We were baptized in rain
and gave ourselves new names
we practiced in secret
among trees we will never forget
now we take on the bodies of dragonflies
and the strategies of grounded birds

We are here to play, knowing this is not a game
when you leap up high, I move in close to the ground
we feint, we dodge, we deke, we lunge
your foot sweeps low, I leap and kick
when you cartwheel and fake, I handstand and spin

we improvise to our own music within the circle of dancers
showing our moves without hurting anyone
shifting from light-hearted play to songs of lost love
both imagining what the other will do
trusting that this is not a trick
you lean in and I don’t turn away
you jump in quickly
while I dance to a slower beat
we dance apart together
creating an illusion
that everyone
falls into

 

Nicholas Power

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About Gesture Press

The poetry of Nicholas Power and his reviews of singular poems in a sequence titled Cadence.
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