Thursday, 8 October 2015

Bachata, a poem by Geoffrey Philp

(for Nadia)

After every party in our house
when the reggae, reggaeton, R&B
have exhausted the younger couples,
and they sit separately to cool down,
I want to dance with you,
the way our friends, Miguel and Ramona,
who have made a promise,
that despite their struggle
with lawyers, bill collectors, and cancer,
they will never leave each other,
and whenever the bachata begins–
we stop to watch how
he will catch her–
she spins out of his arm’s reach
they pass like strangers,
but then his hand
finds the small of her back,
her legs quiver to the old music,
and they are partners in time
with the rhythm, once more.



Geoffrey Philp

7 comments:

Geoffrey Philp said...

Besides being the music of my friends, Miguel and Ramona, I feel an intimate tie to Bachata which has also undergone a social transformation/acceptance that is similar to Reggae's.

Thank you for the recognition and my wife likes the fact that her poem is n France and Africa.

Khotso,
Geoffrey

Rethabile said...

I love this poem for the movement in it, and every time I read,
"they pass like strangers,
but then his hand
finds the small of her back,"

I mentally find the small of my wife's back. One can't help but dance with the poem.

There's another angle. In Sesotho, Ba'a chata means "they're getting married." And Bachati means "newlyweds." Even at that level your poem reaches me.

Please tell her that her poem is beautiful.

Unknown said...

That is a very expressive poem. Thank you for sharing it ... along with the explanation of BACHATA!

peace, Villager

Rethabile said...

Villager,
Yes, it is. Thanks to Geoffrey, really. Cheers.

paisley said...

i can feel the rhythm of the music and the heartbeat of life in this piece... very moving....

Rethabile said...

Great poem, yes. It falls (for me) into the line of dance poems that I've always "collected" and read many times over.

Gemma Wiseman said...

I love "partners in time". The music seeps through this poem.

Just lovely!

Gemma