Indiana Daily Student

Black Voices: ‘Dancing Alone’ a poem by Alicia Harmon

I might burst.

I might burst

or collapse in on myself.


I can’t.

I won’t.

I might swing on the next soul that comes near me.

I might cuss out the next spirit that got a word for me.


I’m. trying. to breathe.

My breath keeps catching

on my own lips.

My throat is tight,

and whatever I manage to speak 

is about to come for the whole word with me in it.

Oh. Well.


But...you probably know I’m lying.

I know I’m lying.

I’m gripping myself as tight as possible,

balancing, just barely,

balancing.


Yes, I’m calm.

Or I’m calming down, yes.

Cause I’m laying all my cares down

and drowning my voice out with 

Otis Redding’s and Marvin Gaye’s.

I’m filling all the noise 

with basslines and piano riffs.

I’m dancing like somebody’s grandma 

in the bedroom 

all by myself

funking up that two-step,

mixing it and jiving it,

sweating and singing,

thighs burning.

Yes.

Yes!

Cause that shit makes me feel good.


And my chest just opens up 

when I snap my fingers

and throw my arms out,

bounce my shoulders,

turn my hips,

twist my feet.

Stomping and clapping.

And I feel my soul is on fire

and I’m fit to bursting.

I might just explode,


and my mind is racing

with how much I love this song

and all the people I’ll dance with before I die

and how silly it was to be too shy

to groove 

knowing good and well I loved dancing


So yes, I’m dancing in the mirror

like I got Soul  Train lines by my side,

like I got me by my side,

like I trust myself to survive,

like I feel good dancing with me.

Get it, ‘Licia, get it.

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