Sarah Tallman

Dancer, Choreographer

“the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars.”

-Jack Kerouac, On the Road

I Wonder As I Wander

I love Christmas. The days leading up, the late nights staring at perfect twinkling lights, and the flickering flames carrying the magical mix of cinnamon, clove and balsam pine. Drifting in and out of naps on the couch, long walks in the crisp winter air, and time in reflection. Settling into the calm is an art in and of itself and though that process for me is messy, I think there’s part of my system that enjoys the slow shift. Completely overstimulated by the complexities of where my life force has stretched and pulled and grown, I manage to navigate my way to a long winter’s trance. 

It takes time for my body to rest. Days and days of pushing and striving. Countless performances, stretching, lifting, make-up, hairspray, all needs a break. Ten days into this beautiful scribble of a process, I am relaxed. Each moment feels longer than the next and my to do list includes finding myself knee deep in sparkles and garland because I am putting the tree up or in, a few days, taking the tree down. My reflections are rich, full and as intricate as the snow flakes that continue to fly. The temperature has dropped significantly and our big red couch swallows me further into its’ folds and swells. Jack the Saintflops his giant head in my lap and lets out a deep groan, or a snore, I’m not sure which, they sound the same. 

And it’s here where I feel real. My thoughts and words move through my mind like a freight train though the longer I sit, they become a mere flutter. There are no notebooks to write it all down, no computer to log each detail, the T.V. doesn’t buzz in the background. There is a chorus of voices softly calling from the living room speakers and the snow is falling outside my front window.  A sacred experience that has no beginning or end. Each moment presencing and folding in on itself. I sink further and further, my eyelids grow heavy though I do not sleep. The silence continues to seduce me and I want to stay here all year, or at least all day. Maybe I have, I can’t remember. The heater begins its’ intermittent hum, the water fountain trickles, the house breathes a familiar sigh of relief and I linger a little longer. Nowhere to be, nothing to prove. The mystery of the holiday season through my adult eyes. 

In a few days the big New Year will shine its’ fresh face onto my world. Confetti will replace tinsel, resolutions replace reflections, and structure will quickly finds its’ way back into each day. Once again I will find delight in morning class and days of rehearsal. The sweat will return and the familiar pumping of my heart in my chest will burst with sunshine excitement. After all, I eat glitter for breakfast. The DO energy will reappear and I wish upon all of the stars that I do not let go of my BE. I have no advice on how to do this and I think that’s just fine. Maybe that’s the BE.  Surrendering to observance, a witnessing of my own experience. 

Not quite ready to move, it’s my turn to sigh and I smile and it all feels right.

I wonder as I wander.  Just a few more moments…


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