Academic journal article TriQuarterly

Saturday Night

Academic journal article TriQuarterly

Saturday Night

Article excerpt

Music is most sovereign because more than anything else, rhythm and harmony find their way to the inmost soul and take strongest hold upon it, bringing with them and imparting grace.

Plato, The Republic

The cranes are flying . . .

Chekhov

And here it comes: around the world, In Chicago, Petersburg, Tokyo, the dancers Hit the floor running (the communal dance floor

Here, there, at intervals, sometimes paved, Sometimes rotted linoleum awash in beer, Sometimes a field across which the dancers streak

Like violets across grass, sometimes packed dirt In a township of corrugated metal roofs) And what was once prescribed ritual, the profuse

Strains of premeditated art, is now improvisation, The desperately new, where to the sine-curved Yelps and spasms of police sirens outside

The club, a spasmodic feedback ululates The death and cremation of history, Until a boy whose hair is purple spikes,

And a girl wearing a skull That wants to say I'm cool but I'm in pain, Get up and dance together, sort of, age thirteen.

Young allegorists, they'll mime motions Of shootouts, of tortured ones in basements, Of cold insinuations before sex

Between enemies, the jubilance of the criminal. …

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