Grand Entry

11 Apr

M.C. bellows,
“Dancers, last call for Grand Entry!
Tack on that duct tape, it’s powwow time!”
But Susie Walks Again is still getting
her hair braided.

Drum roll call rumbles through the arena,
circling outside the ring of white
vendor canopies, out to the parking lot
where brown van conversions double
as champion dancer dressing rooms.

Graceful Northern Buckskin Grandmas
make their way to the East Side.
Spit-smoothing the braids of tiny tots.
While seasoned Southern Straight Gents
have one last drag and joke before stepping out.

Finally, Susie’s braids are done. She runs,
soars, nearly flys, her fancy shawl is airborne.
She’s a renegade butterfly, but she catches
herself. Smooth now, no panting.
She smile nods at Karlie Charles, first place last.

The staff & colors are in first, carried by
Hanoi Vets for Code Talkers.
Families rise under EZ-UPs,
dads spotchecking
for poacher photographers.
The fireblast of spectra bustles and
Vibrant heartbeat of the drum
sing
the
same
song.

Grand Entry

© Asani Charles 2002

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