Friday, July 8, 2011

By the numbers

On one-two, nothing and everything happens.

It's like drawing back the string on a bow: the most gentle part of the whole process, really, but it defines everything that comes after. The lead rock-steps back, letting his arm extend just slightly to avoid pulling her forward at all. She's following, after all, and responding is like breathing. She reads every movement, pulling back when he pulls, pushing back when he pushes, matching him point by point. She even translates the slight right-left bob of his hand into full swivels, like a tiny stone rippling an entire pond. Neither of them has moved yet. It's pure anticipation.

On three, it all snaps. The coiled spring between their arms pulls, and she fires straight forward. He moves just slightly out of her way, catching her back with his other hand, letting her momentum spin him around. They are using one another to ride a wave of kinetic energy.

-and-four: the arms they started with are relaxed now, their job done for the moment. Knees bent, upper bodies pulled back, individually they are completely off balance, but together they're stable. The arms they started with are completely relaxed now, and the energy they imparted is now rebuilding elsewhere. She's sending her weight against the right hand on her back, and it's stretching his right arm like a rubber band.

On five, it snaps. He's stepped behind himself, preparing to be out of her way. She explodes past, and six does nothing more than absorb the blast.

Seven-and-eight, some will tell you, is where it all resets. But if she knows what she's doing, she hasn't let all that energy out just yet, and rides the last little bit until the very last second before they begin again.

It's a storm. Not elegant or pretty, not polished to a shine. It's not civilized. A hurricane made just to generate the peaceful place in its eye.

And one . . .


No comments: