A Dancer's Shirt
By Elaine Naong
Fabric contracts and loosens through sequences
—pirouettes, chainés, jetés, rolls to the floor—
each movement rising then falling,
sinking then recovering.
A second skin breathing in and out with me,
through each step, each turn so meticulously executed,
through each electric beat blaring through the speakers
in this otherwise empty room.
This garment gathering
my sweat, my energy, my
insistence to carry on,
to get as close to enveloping the air
and the floor surrounding me
until my lungs