Dance Craze
by Mark Danowsky

She tells me again what she wants is to dance
to read and to dance for two hours
before dinner each night

And all she wants is
not what I think she wants


There was a kind of plague
that spread from Germany
across Europe and beyond

Those who fell to the dance
danced until they fell
from exhaustion

Some met bad ends

Onlookers believed a curse
had befallen the entranced
who danced and danced

Others probably thought the same
about infectious laughter

Today some blame ergot poisoning—
others? mass hysteria


For those of us who do not aim to dance
it is easy to dismiss as frivolous
as fashion

The dancers claim no agenda

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