There is no compulsion, none whatsoever, to dance.
Some of us are invalid that way, our bodies won't move,
consumed by the rage of giant legs closing us inside prolonged nights.
With darkness hanging from the ceiling, in our beds, we perfected stillness
under the weight of a monster, didn't we?
Our bodies won't move.
Not to the impending sting of accidental bee in the room,
rain gushing through broken roof,
breeze flapping our neck scarves in mild kisses, chime of spoons, doorbell rings, vibrating phones, trendy scores buzzing in chai shops.
Our bodies won't feel. Stiff torso, missing footwork, disconnected weight shifts,
as if killed in the dress rehearsal itself.
in the mirror, don't we tell ourselves,
"Make me slip!
Halfway in the air, I want to depart from everything empty."
Clasping ourselves tight, don't we whimper at our pulse,
"one dance, please?"
Jharna Choudhury, in words and threads, explore the invisible paralysis of the broken body. Survival, to her, is mending corporeal fissures, wanting to dance out of the apathetic skin which is not hers by choice, but by an unasked wound. Follow her creative writings at https://linktr.ee/Jharna_Choudhury. India.