June 12, 1997



by David D. Hambleton


            Danny’s crying over the Gulf, pouring out my anguish as he slowly meanders eastward.  Drops of rain cover the coast with inches of running emotion.  He has no place to go, but moves with undeniable passion.

            I met a girl some years ago.  She was beautiful, coy, and sweet.  She danced with timid footsteps; reticent, defensive, ready to retreat.  I taught her a bold new way to dance.  She stepped out gingerly as a swimmer testing new waters, used to finding it too cold or full of piranha or submerged rocks.  Learning to trust the fiddler, she moved more confidently with time.

            We danced half way around the world, sometimes on each-other’s toes, sometimes like Fred and Ginger wanted to be; but always learning better how to catch one another – and to be caught.  The tunes changed from American country to Mexican salsa to Southern Californian contemporary to Italian classical and now to children’s lullabies. 

            We two-stepped and waltzed close together, so close that to get any closer we’d have been behind one another.  We danced with space between us; me a Spanish strain full of desire and pain, she a lonely Israeli zahora – lonely in spite of the crowd.  Then again we danced close, to a Sardinian lovers’ ballad about a couple whose dreams and hopes are dashed and then rebuilt – all by the artful fiddler Himself.  We held eacho other and rocked and cried for joy over the crib, the dance of happy parents – but the tune resonated with chords from “The Cat’s In the Cradle.”

            Now she kicks out a solo soft-shoe to saxophone on San Diego’s bluffs while I perform my Souza military march in Danny’s deep dolorous Florida rain.


            Will you dance with me, Princess?