Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Dancing (In the Middle of the Road)

“In these challenging economic times … “

I know!

People are hurting. People are worried. People are scared. People are hunkering down, counting the cash, renewing their Cosco memberships, selling Aunt Virginia’s earrings and Uncle Rick’s coin collection, Cutting up credit cards is the least of it. The Bitches of Orange County are slinking off to the private auctions with their husbands’ third Rolex, and waxing grateful for the cash in hand. Things are tough all over.

In these challenging economic times, there is nothing for it but to grab our asses, husband our losses, hang on to the rim for the long haul, and pray that we are left with healthy remnants of our former lives. Can you hear the Little Match Girl sobbing in the snow?

OK. Stop. Just Stop.

Do you really think it must be like that?

Have our lives descended into black and white depression-era film clips of reincarnated Oakies running from the Dustbowl into the jaws of some carnivorous California? Have we lost our ability to help each other and ourselves simultaneously? Have we fallen so far that we are incapable of recovering? And, after flying so high in the first place?

No. Don’t buy it.

We have not fallen so far from the path that we have forgotten who we are (us!), where our resources spring from (within), where we are going (here, there – oh, and there too), and what we will do when we get there (whatever is in our dizzy little head). I say it only takes an act of will to remember ourselves.

I say we get busy.

Because, the only way we will ever crawl, limp, and walk out into the sunshine is to first turn towards the sunshine. The only way we will regain our optimism is to remember what optimism feels like. The only way we will raise ourselves up is to understand the definition of up. And, the only way to do all that is to regain our sense of self. Of soul. Of smile. Of laugh. Of life.

I have a suggestion: Why don’t YOU go outside. Out of your room. Out of your house. Out of your office, your cubicle, your building. Out of yourself. Our of your comfort zone. Out of your mind.

Are you out?

Good.

Now see that road? Right there in front of you. I don’t care whether it is in your mind’s eye, or in your physical eye – as long as it is right in front of you. As in: Your Road. Hell, this is your reawakening. Step up. Step out. Right into the middle.

Are you there?

Good for you!

Now, stand straight. You’re slouching. OK. Inhale. No, I mean really inhale. Deep. Deeper. Jesus, you still have lungs, don’t you? Breathe DEEPER!

Yeah, like that. Good.

Feel that cool, deep, tingly air down through your chest and stomach and hips and thighs and knees and ankles and toes. Tingly. Go on. Curl your toes. You know you want to. Good.

Now, I need you to close your eyes. Close – c’mon. No one’s here. Close your eyes. Feel the sun? The warmth? Even in this last stretch of bitter damn!-it-snowed-again Winter? Like a kernel of the sun growing in your belly?

OK. Get ready. Breathe. Breathe. Again.

Do you feel it?

That … what? Magic? Rhythm? Yeah, rhythm. Something coming, coming to the fore. In you. Spring – yes, a seasonal change just over the horizon, but somehow more personal, don’t you think? Wow. Drum and pipe and blood running. Mind stuttering, falling back. Limbs loosening. Core swaying.

Feel it? Yeah?

So, now what are you going to do? What do you want to do? What else is there to do, but dance? Yes, I said dance.

You can’t? What do you mean you can’t?

Bullshit.

It’s your road. Who else should/could/would dance in the middle of it?

Silly? Pfft. Then be silly. I don’t care what you look like. Stretch out your arms and legs. Turn around. Hell, I’ll turn around if you don’t want me to see, you baby!

Dance.

Now where are you?

16 comments:

One Red Horse said...

Whoa! Or is it Giddy-up? If there was ever a post to dazzle my impending funk that I'm trying to outfox, this is it. Thanks. From the road. Cherie

Lori Skoog said...

LOVE THIS ONE FE! Creative and real....I dance every morning in the barn as I listen to the radio...now I'll have to go out on the street and make my own music.

Carolyn said...

Fe, what a wonderful post and so true. It is so easy to buy into the bill of goods we are being sold and experiencing. It takes each one of us to decide we are not going down that road and look at the good that under lies all the doom and gloom. Time to turn off the radio and television and turn up the music and dance like you have never danced before.
Thank you so much for sharing.
Hugs and smiles

San said...

Great advice, Fe! It's always healthier to dance than to hunker.

But please, Fe, don't watch me while I dance. Just keep typing. Pretend I'm not there. Another great post!

rebecca said...

Well, I've been known to shake my ass anywhere...and I mean anywhere! So, yeah, I'm with you Sister Fe...let's boogy on down that yellow brick road!

This was good; really, really good. You are the antithesis of what ails America right now. And, frankly, I'm liking your words much better! Oh yeah!

Hey, I sent you an email re. Tavis Smiley's State of the Black Union this Friday on C-Span. Don't forget to watch it. It was awesome.

"come on and ease on down, ease on down the road....don't you carry nothing that might be a load, come on, ease on down, ease on down the road"

Yeah....

Janie said...

I'm out (of my mind), and breathing, and dancing.
Great post. If all we do is listen to the dismal news, we'll sure be in trouble. Dance on!

mountain.mama said...

You said everything I've been thinking!

Esther Garvi said...

I loved this post! Not much of dancer perhaps, but I'm on the road, playing like a child with Sheba and tightly followed by a pack of barb mares! Life is meant to be lived - and money can never guarantee you happiness or even life quality, if you count the little moments.
Your post Fe makes me think of the lepers. They are the most unfortunate people I know with no hands, no feet, and reduced to begging. And yet - they are always smiling. Always. It's an equation I cannot make out, but I keep learning from it. For despite being deprived of hands and feet, they are dancing down their road. As in DANCING. And they let me watch.

Janie said...

I hereby nominate this blog for the Lemonade Award! Details are on my blog.

CoyoteFe said...

Hellooo Cherie!
Giddyup indeed! Spring is coming, our country is listing to the side, and we have all this energy stored up from the winter. Just think of all the opportunities that will present themselves if we just open up a little.
Or a lot. :-)


Lorelei, Thank you!
And, of COURSE you dance in the barn each morn! Would love to have a direct connection into the thoughts of your herd as they watch you dance. Please ask Gary to take video of you dancing in the street, and post!


Carolyn, Howdy and thank you!
So right about us owning our own minds and reactions - if we want to. It does not profit us to fall into a funk. Too much energy moving in the wrong direction. Too much time bemoaning the cost expected and work needed to build a castly when what we need is a roof over our heads.


San, Desert-Woman!
Hunkering hurts my muscles and joints. So much easier to move around, loosen before leaping, and think of how much easier it is to talk when dancing, as opposed to hunkering. And, I WANT to see you dance! Tcha! Have you seen ME dance????


Rebecca-san!
You slay me! Of COURSE you shake your ass at every opportunity! Oh, girl, I know we have to lay out our problems, find the resources and leaders to solve them. Let's not sugarcoat and all that. But, we also need light, air, motivation and movement. We need to believe in ourselves, and hold on to all the good things. No need to huddle, and as San says "hunker" when the gods gave us bodies. Catching up on email, and cannot believe you are running around singing from "The Wiz" Boogie on, grrl!


Greetings, Janie!
I would not be surprised to see you dancing on the desert air with all your magical out-doorsiness! Less moody pessimism and more action-y optimism. I do not like living in a hole (even the beautiful caves on your blog!)


Welcome, Mountain Mama!
Glad for the sahred voice!


Greetings, Esther!
*I* bet you are a bonny dnacer! I also quite see Sheba dancing around you dancing! Do try! I love your life philosophy. Moeny is a tool not a goal, and I firmly believe that our heart knows best what we should focus on. We get caught up in the trappings of life, and forget to live the life. YOU are blessed and those blessings always always contained in your words. Clear evidence? That you notice and celebrate the smiles of the lepers you meet, rather than remarking on their losses and circumstances. Must ask, what can be done to help/alleviate/prevent the problems?

Glad to "know" you!


Janie!
Thank you for the nomination! You are too kind!

J said...

Amazing post, and great music!

CoyoteFe said...

J - Thank you!

And, thank you for visiting. Great perspective of China on your blog!

Esther said...

Alleviate worldwide problems or those of the truly unfortunate?
I think in our case (the "fortunate" in global comparison, even though we don't always feel it) gratefulness for what we have rather than regretting what we lack is the one thing that will keep us above the water surface, regardless of what we go through. And life's journey is a bumpy road, it has its ups and downs. If we don't acknowledge the good stuff and do it justice by allowing ourselves to really stop and enjoy the moments (and there really are so many of them!), how are we going to do anything but sink when hardship comes?
As for the really unfortunate people, the only way to help them increase their quality of life is to help them live a sustainable life, independent of outside aid. When I was a kid, my dad used to say: "If they never thank us, we have succeeded." But the thing is, when helping others, you have to make really sure you don't get flattered into becoming a part of their lives, because the goal is for them to stand on their own. Eden is one example - I am sure there are others. I'll send you Eden's last newsletter Fe to cheer up your day! :-)

Warm greetings from West Africa,
Esther

Ken Mac said...

Thank you. Beautiful!

CountryDreaming said...

Just want to shout out a hello, from one who long ago danced down the middle of the street in the middle of a blizzard while delivering newspapers for my brother back in the mid '80s! (Yes, I was living in the infamously snowbound Buffalo, NY area back then.) Too bad little brother stayed inside. He really missed out on a once-in-a-lifetime adventurous day. ... One who dances because of the snow, and not in spite of it, salutes you with good greetings! (I love winter.)

CoyoteFe said...

Esther!
How did I get this far behind? Such a slacker am I! Love your comment. We (the fortunate) are not as grateful as we should be because we strain everything through a filter of relativeness. When we are confronted by TRUE suffering, we are flabbercasted and cannot cope. When we crack our eyes open just a little, it helps. One step at a time all day long, I suppose. And, you and your foundation have proven that the only way to help is to help someone help themselves. Seems we should have learned that by now!

Ken!
Thanks for visiting!

Welcome,CountryDreanubg!
Thanks for dropping by, and staying for a dance. You're a woman after my own heart with your blizzard dance! But, not that love winter stuff - Ha!