You’d hardly believe them partners, the way her feet
get dragged in the passive pose, a living corpse
that springs with guiro strums back to the consuming
patterns of this dance, nearly a fight,
this movement with its emphatic gestures so
oddly statuesque. Ask me what I think,
they are too caught up in the commotion to think.
Lead and follow unite, divide. Their feet
predict one another. Its patterned embodiment so
thoroughly digested. Hardly more so around the corpse
at a wake’s silence where a family fight
could flare, were being ‘correct’ not so consuming.
Michael Todd Steffen’s poems have appeared in journals including The Boston Globe, E-Verse Radio, The Lyric, The Dark Horse, and The Concord Saunterer. Of his second book, On Earth As It Is, now available from Cervena Barva Press, Joan Houlihan has noted Steffen’s intimate portraits, sense of history, surprising wit and the play of dark and light…the striking combination of the everyday and the transcendent.