Come Earthward by Robert Vivian

         And now it’s time to dance this very second, no matter where you are or what ails you, even if you have shin splints, even if your feet are broken, and this can be proven with radiant clarity for the vast hegemony of cardiovascular reality, pumping heart, pumping blood and expanding and deflating lungs (can you fathom the miracle of this?), and what rhythms would you assume and what rhythms would become you, rhetorical questions pointing to the reality of verb and all holy movement and action words and gestures, fey hand to the throat in feigned surprise, hand to the thigh for something deeper, something more pungent, a quick pivot of one’s instep, the holy groin, a small leap over the puddle iridescent with motor oil, and would you dance with me, would you shake it and would that we become apples or stars in the motion of heavenly bodies come earthward, and we are, and it is so, and it’s called this frail human vessel that’s a tugboat of great dearness, hauling what it can in its wake, a few love letters, battered suitcase filled with underwear that tend to fly out when tugboat takes a tight corner, labored breathing and a cough or two, and would you Fred Astaire me, would you Ginger Rogers the sweeping staircase in glissando key C-major, for there is a wind that sweeps over all of us out of the valley of the dry bones that stare all day at the sun with their dry mouths hanging open, but we are still quick and lively, and there are grooves in people, actual unplowed furrows deep as the night and it is glorious to move, glorious to walk and turn around, and before the planet of arthritis and old age we were all swallows and leaping fawns—we were the world when it was young, and there is stardust in us yet, so move while you still can, oh, shake and wiggle it, and use they holy brow as lightning bolt for sweat and nodding yes, yes, yes to the two-step and boogie woogie you are a part of, the need to jump and slide and all the love you are heir to here in the kingdom of another given and totally gratuitous day.