The Fear of not Moving
" . . . tango is what remains when you remove all movement, when the only thing that is left is feeling." - Carlos Gavito, (1)
Three steps forward, two steps back.
At least I have made some progress.
But I am still rushing. Still moving too soon.
And too fast.
Tango, it seems, can't undo a lifetime of constantly moving.
Constantly running - always closing the doors behind me.
It's exhausting to keep moving - but terrifying to stop.
To wait. To listen.
Sometimes stopping feels a lot like suffocating.
What am I so afraid of?
El duende? Frequently.
But even those aren't really it.
Maybe that there will be nothing.
Not the little nothings that inhabit tiny gaps in our day.
Those traveling moments of suspension between one thing and the next thing.
Falling forward into the next moment. Not those.
Thunderous silence in the absence of. . . .
the absence of what?
The absence of me?
Expanded. Dispersed. Without bounds and without borders.
Between notes, between steps,
between one breath and the next,
between his heart and mine.
Free-fall in the pause.
So I court the pauses, write about them, wax nostalgic about them as if we're old friends.
But really, all I do is peek at them around corners, and then take off again as they approach,
often leaving my partner chasing me in the embrace.
I want to stop preparing for the next thing,
stop being ready,
silence the constant "what'scomingnextwhat'scomingnextwhat'scomingnext."
"So what are you working on?"
"What does a dancer feel when he pauses? Fear, the fear of not moving. Dancing - moving, in effect - is like escaping from something: from a silence, from a commitment." (Ibid.)
1. "I Wanted to Dance: Carlos Gavito: Life, passion and tango" by Ricardo Plazaola
Picture courtesy of morguefile.com.