Mira’s very life has become a dance, from morning til night, and she is noticing how tango integrates her parts, her days, her moods, her previous experiences, and defines how her history relates to the present.
A dancer must first arrive on the dance floor and be present with her breath, the floor, her partner, the music, before integrated movement can begin.
(Banners in this chapter are close up photos of Monet Waterlily panels at the Musée de l'Orangerie, Paris, digitally manipulated.)
There is absolutely no reason to dance if the senses are not alive, active, and noticing the effects of movements, connection, music. The experience is the thing.
The qi energy flows in and out of her and her partner through palms, arms, embrace, energy gates of the bodies, wrapped legs, the ground, the sky….
Two partners, two axes, sometimes shared sometimes separate exactly as in life coming and going merging and separating as the improvised choreographed conversation unfolds, lifting, settling, pivoting, pausing, realigning, and beginning again.
Tango is basically an improvised walking hugging meditation with a great deal of style.
It has become her favored form of meditation, the one that asks for all of her to be present and engaged, not unlike Tai chi, and with the added element of partnership.
There are only a few basic steps, side, forward, backward, pivot and some embellishments. The turns are dissociated, sequentially winding and unwinding whole body spirals that feel as sensuous as they look,
Mira reflects on her mammalian status and knows the impetus to hug and hold is hard wired for good reason. Her tango practice leads her to notice and appreciate the quality hugs she experiences in a day.
She attended a tango class that began with hugging, progressed to enhanced hugging with breath, then to walking hugs, and finally dancing hugs, and it was nothing but yummy. Gender of partner did not matter.
When she first started dancing with a partner she noticed a lot of “oops”. “sorry”, mutterings which gradually subsided as the miscues, misinterpretations, and mistakes become more like the jazzy wrong notes that might lead to new discoveries.