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Day 9: Move

At night, I dance.

I sweep through the valley arrayed in freedom, leaping and bounding with grace and majesty. My body is agile, my limbs healthy and tenacious. I am alive.

With my every movement I am tearing the yoke of blindness from eyes that cannot see and untying the knots of slavery binding wrists and feet. My legs are strong and they do not fail me.

I have no fear in this sacred place, the garden of my dreams.

I dance until the ground begins to shake, tantamount with the rhythm of heaven and the beating drums are pouring out of the hearts of mountains, flooding the earth with spoken poetry. I am within the sounds and the noise is vibrating through my bones and my heart is a tambourine.

I move with the resplendent rushing tides, but even the ocean is not powerful enough for me and I dance faster still, until my sweat is streaming rivers soaking the ground and my heart beats savagely against my chest, travailing for justice.

My spine is straight, a rod of poise and dignity. It is strong as steel and light as air, the perfect structure upon which my flesh and nerves are enmeshed in harmony. My muscles ache and my lungs expand to their glorious capacity, bursting at their resilient seams. I am drinking in my fill of sweet, honeyed air, crying out for more.

And just at the moment it seems I would drown in my own oxygen, my lungs yield to the joy of abandonment and I am stronger.

Shouting, I leap and the tops of the trees are my ballroom floor; the colors of the seasons and the changing earth caress my feet as I skim the edges of night. In the unbroken sweetness of this immortal play, from my purchase in the heavens the suffering of all people is finally manageable.

I twist, my body bending in a thousand unfathomable ways that are gorgeous to behold. I am alive as I move between the stars that light the night.

In my rejoicing, there is a moment when the storms roll off the back of the waters and the music softens it’s treading and the thrumming in my blood slows.

August, the moon wanes, and the veil of darkened night descends. This is the moment when immeasurable amounts of tears begin flowing from my footsteps, rushing onwards through the valleys as they race towards the sea.

I am unanimous with mourning, and my limbs stretch themselves long in despondency, reaching for protection , weeping for loss. Empathy tears through my veins as I spin and fold, as the gravestones beneath me shudder and grieve over death and sorrow, evoking hearts to bow in exhortation and weep the tears of innumerable souls. In this moment, I am grief. I am cloaked in night and dance on the altar of sacrifice: I dance over it all.

Colors illustrious drape over me, but cannot touch me. Melodies chase my ears but I am one step ahead and the music emanates from the chambers of my heart .

The mountain tops are my footholds as I race up their sides, purging the stages of despair my brothers and sisters courageously face in the day light. I lay my body in the spaces of the valleys, indulging in their beauty.

I dance until the anger, the sadness, and the fear have run their courses. Until they have been felt in all their archaic fullness and have been given due justice. Until they have been known with everything I have, and the ashes of mourning have been washed clean by my tears and the oil of gladness anoints my skin in the devastation of grief’s wake.

I dance until the virgin sun is born again and the sunrise abounds in radiance. As shafts of light break through the darkness and pierce my soul and I move in praise and worship as the rocks and the earth cry out.

As the light kisses my glistening skin I am beckoned home, softly, and He meets me in sovereignty.

He eases the pain from my sore muscles and slowly works them back into form. It is not my form when I dance, but the mask I wear in the day light. He curves my back into its proper place, bends my legs into familiar shapes, all the while calling me beautiful, calling me lovely, calling me perfect. My teeth are jumbling in my mouth, a peculiar physical feat. His hands are careful and true and He touches my lips in understanding. My heart continues to sing.

I awake in the morning, satisfaction and yearning both laid deep in my being. As I drag my tired limbs from sleep I look upon my wheelchair in triumph.

At night, I dance.