Friday, November 19, 2010
I'm outside the Notre-Dame-de-Bonsecours Chapel, "Our Lady of Good Help" in Montreal at 7:00am on Sunday morning. The church expresses Mary in her manifestation as Star of the Sea, a boon for sailors coming in and out of the port. I'm walking a gravel plank flanking her one stone side, while on the other side people gather for a soup kitchen. Still shy of dancing on that side.
But - have to walk a plank. Narrow, hemmed in - training, technique, discipline necessary to ultimately dive deep and die deep. Jennifer Monson - choreographer, dancer and enviromental activator extraordinaire - was here in Vermont this week leading workshops at UVM. I was grateful to be led, taught, trained - grateful for her clear available path of improvisational and energy exploration. I was reminded to be thankful for dance and movement improvisation, for body studies in general - a pretty plank I've found myself on for the last twenty years.
Church bells in a city are beautiful, a good reason to have a city at all. Feel the clanging in my lungs; they are the city's lungs. Hypnotic rhythmic improvisation on two or three notes, so plainly heaved for everyone. Depending on your mode, the bells stir up, calm down, celebrate, mourn.