Bette had a way of dancing
when she got into rye.
She’d start up in the middle of the cabin
all by herself. She’d feel the beat
move to Lenny Welch
the spinning of the forty-five,
Since I Fell For You.
She’d sway, hold her hand
a little high and to the side
like Auntie Mame
without a cigarette,
invite us all to dance
coax us to our feet, picked me
the shy one, dragged me up,
moved me about the floor
where in a swollen beat of time
I lost all inhibitions, felt the music
take me out of the prison I was in.
Then Malaguena, its haunting Andalusian
notes twisted the room into distorted shapes
where I could conquer windmills,
fight dragons, fall in love with Dulcinea
with every pure plucked string.
Previously published in Island Writer, Dec. 2010.
David Fraser’s poetry has appeared in many journals and anthologies, including Rocksalt, An Anthology of Contemporary BC Poetry and Walk Myself Home. He has published three collections of poetry, Going to the Well (2004), Running Down the Wind (2007) and No Way Easy, 2010. Home Site: www.davidpfraser.ca