Dance, girl, dance on tiptoe stiletto, hinged, oil knees and quivering. Lay neck to pole, balance. 

Crawl to the man with the twenty dollar bill, show breast tip, suckle-cracked shimmering in disco starlight and painted. Strawberry gloss. Show him and grab the bill before he pulls away.
Crawl to the suited couple in disco light, laughing into Blackberries. Unfold petal legs, knees and thighs. Watch his hand move to her and her hand, too, as they watch you and laugh and sigh and rub while whispering of figures and market gain.  
Dance, girl, dance.
Inch like inchworm to the little man, upstage, wearing wig and dark glasses workaday expression. Gritty end to another cattle day, and his mouth speaks of eagerness and sex and roses, possibly red. Will he come again tomorrow?
Slide, girl, slide a pole, across stage with legs wide. Exposed. Slide, girl, slide.
And dance where the stiletto beat tap, taps on stage. Dance to the flamenco, hard rock bass. It wears leather tight melody.
Dance, girl, for me on a sweat-covered stage. Dance for your rest behind curtain. Dance for the little boy waiting at home for birthday cake and action figure, for life worth living and dancing on stage if living life is worth the trouble.

Rae Bryant is a 2008 recipient of the Whidbey Writers' Prize, 2009 editor nominated for StorySouth's Million Writers Award, and an M.A. writing candidate at Johns Hopkins.  She is the editor of Moon Milk Review. Her fiction appears or is soon forthcoming at Word Riot, The Medulla Review, Weave Magazine, Willows Wept Review, Pear Noir!, and Bartleby Snopes, among other publications. Read more at <>.


Post-feminist reading and writing has been a particular focus of late. In a flurry of writing explorations, I've studied the feminine in difficult situations, women who choose a lesser of two evils--choice being the operative word. "Stiletto Dance" is one piece that came out of this exercise.



Copyright 2009