There is a story told

by a twirling ballerina

pirouetting to the music

of a forgotten age with

not a single word.


A whole world painted

by graceful movement,

emotion in motion as

she spins over and over,

her skirt stretching out


over my imagination

as she leaps and is lifted

to fly beyond the scripted

characters scribbled by

my stilted pen strokes.


Words do not match

the flow of her hand,

the pain in her face,

the hint of joy whispered

by her high-flying dress.


But look closer and

you will see the toll

telling her story takes;

the bowed legs and

carefully bound feet.


We must both squeeze

a whole life through

a single spinning point

and it wears us down,

this search for beauty.


Hers is a story told by

the sculpted body and you

can see the marks it leaves,

mine is told by the mind;

it is my sanity it cleaves.


But the woods are

lovely, dark and deep,

the dance is mesmerising

and though I weep,

the ballerina leaps on:


for there is yet beauty

and we must keep on,

my ballerina and I, to find it

lose it and find it again

before we sleep.

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