The Abecedarian -- the dance by Lucy and the poem by Sarah Slean

After performing my work "The Abecedarian" this weekend, some audience members asked about reading Sarah Slean's poem which was written for me to use as inspiration for choreography. Sarah is a most generous and amazing artist, on many levels and I hope you can take the time to read this beautiful poem below. It is also published in her most recent book of poetry. See for details....

ABECEDARIAN - by Sarah Slean
A - amelia earheart yearning to fly. awe flowers open in her dreaming eye. like the long and constant exhale of the sky while the monk at his table, is writing.

B - what you reach for is already there, in your hand, you may think we are birds condemned to the land, but somewhere eternal, beyond feeble sight. the gravity creature is always in flight.

C - consecutive clock has an itch it must scratch, it will tick and will tock and will cower and crack, but "circle", the word, contains all that C knows, the hard kick of time and the soft way it flows.

D - parting the years like a volatile sea... "Now" opens time like a dictionary from young to old and from A to Z you are always right there in the middle

E - ecstatic, the embers fly up to the trees, exhaling their lives with elegant ease the campfire instructs us to rise from our knees but who, of the gathered, is listening.

F - follow me follow me follow me follow me today is the fountain from which you must feed forget that you fell from that Genesis tree the fruits and the flowers are not fantasy

G - "God" is the guess that they want you to make but grace, when it's granted, won't let you partake go further instead, to the uncharted lake, where you know golden swans are a-swimming.

H - the earth softly utters a holier word in the hollow where bickering gods can be heard "heaven is coming", "it's already occurred!" they shout in the faces of unnoticed angels

I - this, the illusion we ironically see, that I am not you, and you are not me like ivy its climbing and choking the tree that, despite a great crown, grew from one common seed

J - jewels of sweat on the Jesuit brow, mecca vibrates under thundering bows and the monk, at his table, cannot fathom how there is only a mouse in the temple of Now

K - yet who can contest its most curious might? this killer of kings, this glorious knight who quiets the enemy, not with a fight, but almost as if letting go of a kite?

L - in longing to know, we must love the unknown with Kierkegaard, trembling, and aching for home we leap and discover the light in a stone is the very same light in the heart of a master

M - "master?, what master?", the suicides ask "How am I a slave if I know not my task? How can I love God when I know it's a mask that my own starving mind has created."

N - Napoleon squirms in his watery grave and Nietzsche's convinced that there's nothing to save. he spat on the flowers the poetess gave as she murmured the sonnets of Rilke.

O - Overmen shatter, but archers will go, even though hard the seasons of suffering blow watch how he opens, caresses his bow in the midst of uproarious battle.

P - piercing all shadows with blistering light the arrows flies high through the perilous night love, sent in earnest, will always make right the erroneous aim of its sender.

Q - then what must we make of the stumbling queen who gropes in the firelight for answers unseen? she poisons herself to dismantle the scene that plays and replays in her memory.

R - ravens assemble all over her chair and peck at the riches of rags in her hair tangled in puppetry, courting despair, her play will crescendo to ruin

S - that's when Seymour appears, his lost sister to claim, like the monk at his table, he tells her, "don't aim, how can you see, when you're drowning in shame, the You that is ancient and without a name?"

T - "Tomorrow torments you and time is the terror, a watch is the gift that will torture the bearer. to live is no art - art is for the pretender to live, my dear queen, is an act of surrender."

U - "Undo the divisions a hungry heart makes remember the swans in the uncharted lakes theirs is a silence that slowly unties the veil that for so long has covered your eyes"

V - a veil, she imagined, a veil of lace with patterns the mind wants to frantically chase a veil that, though lovely, obscures the true face of a queen who is yearning to see.

W - who will record the inquiry herein? all of these questions have answers built in Wonder is all, and forever has been the jewel in our cognitive crown

X - sometimes there is simply no need to explain the sexier side of existence is plain delicious it is to know pleasure and pain to court them, but never to marry.

Y - you are the puzzle, you, the perfection you, the miraculous, living reflection of everything vast and beyond feeble sight you are the gravity creature, alight!

Z - like sandbags from magical hot air balloons, we cut at the rope of our fictions and soon, there's a You that is ancient and without a name and zenith and zero are one and the same.


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