Lantern Review | Issue 9.3

Cat Wei

Dancing at The Get Down

there is a snowstorm outside & inside the floor is full of people & the bright
discolight twinkles surrounded by four smaller orbs like Jupiter and its moons / Under
its galilean orbit / its glitter cascade we are in outer space / The lights pulse blue and purple
and silver & DJ tasha is a nebula over our atmosphere / We throw ourselves to the drums
& our fingers are sunrays our laughter the flashes of comets / It is Thursday & we are a
living kaleidoscope folding into our Mondays and out again

/ The man in red tights and harness hoists a tambourine / On the dance floor rings an unbearable
call you’ve got the love & we pray to the barrel drum strapped to the waist of the
young man with the faded jeans / For a moment he is a god & the echoes go deeper than June
/ There is a river on Mars chiseled with rain cracked like a lip like wanting hewn
into the millennium / There is a girl in an orange skirt who hikes it up to her knees and rolls her
neck wildly like a hurricane like monsoon season in wet and dry times / It is more than
hair and sweat we are flinging / When I'm dancing I do not think about my father working long
past dinnertime or my mother purchasing reams of toilet paper on sale / I do not listen for
tomorrow’s alarm reminding me to face the morning cold

/ Do you hear the sound of feet chanting? I sayI always love a good party but this is our
names forgetting our names our bodies reclaiming our bodies our hearts remembering our
ancestors cowered fireside in the forest held by the sound of a flicker / We are planets
& the contours of our breath are pulling a new milky way across the sky & no one
races for the exit at the last song / We open our mouths like drinking rain & no one wears heels
on this dance floor / There is plenty of room on this dance floor for the girl in the golden dress
to leap into her lover’s arms / On the edges in the shadow I listen for the wail and pitch
as we work ourselves into a frenzy / There’s something about darkness / Sometimes before
bedtime I turn off the lights and light a candle just to feel the dark closing in / The flame
is a living thing a hot / a wild / and burning.

Photo of Cat Wei Cat Wei is a poet and nonfiction writer in New York. She is a Tin House workshop alumni and an Idyllwild Writers Week fellow. Her writing is Best of the Net nominated and appears or is forthcoming in Sundog Lit, Vagabond City Literary Review, and Gulf Coast. The recipient of a Manhattan Arts Grant from the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, she is also the founder of East Village Poetry Salon, a reading series that centers female, queer, and trans poets of color.
• Photo by Yuxi Lin

Return to the top of the page ▲