Poetry Prompt: Go back to when you were eight years old. Write down all of the dreams and aspirations of that little girl or little boy. Now pick one and write what it would feel like to be living that dream authentically. Really use as many sensory words as you can.
It’s funny that this is today’s poetry prompt, as I just watched a video that reminded me so much of my childhood. If this had happened in my dance class when I was a kid, she would have been shamed. She would have been deemed “the bad girl,” and the rest of us would have been told not to be a “bad girl like so-and-so” and to listen and follow the instructions from the teacher. It’s interesting to me to see her deemed “hilarious,” “cute,” and “adorable” when I’m pretty sure she would have been labeled “disruptive,” “trouble,” and “a bad girl” if she’d been in my dance class growing up.
I guess this is leading to an appropriate “Throwback Thursday” sort of moment.
I remember being told
I was too tall to dance.
So, I was stuck being the pin
of the pinwheel as everyone pranced.
My petite classmates surrounded me
and danced around in vain.
I tried my very hardest to smile
as I found myself filled with pain.
I knew I was a natural klutz
from the very start.
I just never believed
my clumsiness would affect my art.
The other girls did their best,
and I suppose I did too.
It just wasn’t fair to always be too tall,
this I simply knew.
I wanted to pirouette
and do an arabesque.
But instead I stood there like a tree,
the root to all the rest.
I think back to the days
where I worked so very hard,
and I can still feel
my legs against the barre.
I could have been a dancer,
specializing in ballet, tap, or jazz.
I could have been the very best
the dance world ever had.
I would have worn so many things,
had a closet of leotards.
I just wish the social construct of dance
hadn’t been so prejudiced and hard.
Sometimes when my mind wanders,
as minds so often do,
I wonder if I’d be a dancer
if I’d been of average height too.