Tuned In

NaPoWriMo Day #3

Today’s prompt invited me to look up the #1 pop song on my birthday and write a poem inspired by that song.  I could also look up another significant date and use the song associated with that date instead.  I tried my birthday, and then the day that my husband and I always celebrated as the day of our first kiss.  I have to say that the first option won out.  Poems I have written inspired by my love for my husband will have to wait.  Especially since I am posting this in advance (courtesy the techno savvy of my friend Helen) because I am taking my kids to the Museum of Science and Industry for their birthdays today…their 23rd and 25th birthdays (kids never outgrow museums!).   I want to give my husband and the poetry he inspires a bit more time.

The number one hit song on the day that I was born was…..”The Locomotion” by Little Eva. 

I had an immediate association.  Not with the song, specifically.  With a train.  Steve has taken to describing my typical M.O. as “the freight train”.  It has to do with a very focused, linear way of acting.  I get into a task-oriented mode when I’m trying to get something accomplished.  I do not like to get side-tracked when I am operating like that.  I like to streamline and simplify and do one thing after another until the whole bloody thing is finished.  God help you if you get in my way.  That’s what cow catchers are for.  It can be an effective way of doing things.  Steve, however, likes to be “light on his feet”, like a river, like a school of fish, shaped by movement and fluidity.  There are advantages to that, too.  Anyway, it’s one of our points of reference when discussing our differences and trying to achieve compromise.

That’s the back story.  Here’s the poem:


Was I born to do this straight-track motion

Or was I just trained?

Was chugging along my very first notion?

Was it always ingrained?

It’s not much of a dance.

It’s not fluid with grace.

There’s not much of a chance

Of a partner to face

When we’re all in a line

Going forward full speed.

Someone’s always behind;

Someone’s always the lead.

So “ev’rybody’s doing it”,

And that may be true.

But, c’mon baby, are you sure it’s for you?

I think this is my moment to jump off the track.

And, no, I’m not asking for my money back.

Was that Scilla that just blew by?!

7 thoughts on “Tuned In

  1. Baby, off you go into the arms of the night
    a swirl of heat in the darkness
    a touch and glow path behind you
    of lightning bugs lifting their wings
    offering a taste of what is good
    what is ripe, what can be yours
    when you unfurl your arms to take in
    the restless, churning stir of
    another’s heart worked out through
    her pelvis, her feet, her hands, her eyes.
    There is music in your heart and
    driving dubstep bass in your sinews
    coursing power chords that beat through
    your fine, strong flesh.
    Of course you will dance.
    You should. You must.
    For that is what your broad animal body
    was made to do.
    She will be fortunate to fall into your motion
    and discover the momentum of your lead.
    For it is a delicate truth that you whisper with your fingertips
    That she is grace and she is beauty and
    She has never before been touched like this
    or awakened to what her dance reveals:
    each moment fresh, new formed, newly pulsing
    in the path between her eyes and yours.

    Baby, off you go into the arms of the night.
    They are my arms and they hold you with a fierceness
    Matched only by their expanse.
    You know who I am and who you are with me
    and what happens after the fluttering is spent
    when a deep ocean surge
    pulls its mysterious tides against the
    continents of our souls and the music’s last notes
    slow to meet its unequivocal demands.
    Baby, you know what is deep and lasting and true,
    what fills your mouth with more desire
    than the kisses of a thousand lips.
    Baby, you know this.
    So, Baby, save the last dance for me.

    (#1 on 11/01/1960: Save the Last Dance for Me, by the Drifters. One of my favorite songs ever.)

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