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I Cannot Compete With the Best Dancer

posted Jan 23, 2015, 5:04 PM by Sophia de Lautour   [ updated Jan 23, 2015, 5:20 PM ]

north sydney tango lessons
Image source: Wikimedia Commons

Sharing this insightful poem by Mark Word (Tango Therapist) for anyone who is in a tango couple partnership (or wary of getting into one!) or who gets jealous or insecure when their partner dances with others. 

I was in a tango couple partnership for eleven years and now have mixed feelings about the possibility of having a life partner who is, like me, a tango aficionado. I believe that tango is like a double edged sword. It can either be a wonderful tool for enhancing a love relationship or it can lead to its disintegration. The strength and quality of the relationship and the psychological maturity of each partner will determine which way the sword cuts. To quote Mark  - 'being a dancing couple takes psychological maturity and even may require some spiritual growth'. I love his final words in the original post, which i share now as a prelude to the poem...

'Tango couples have difficulties because of holding on to the hope that they are the "one and only." There is never a "one and only." There is a whole universe of people who bring richness to us, and of course, to our partners. Let go, and let it be so!' 

He will always dance better than me...
By Tango Therapist
Posted January 22, 2015

'I cannot compete with the best dancer.
He embodies the music better than I,
His embrace fits more nicely to hers.
His movements are excitingly new,
And hewn from years of experience.
But he cannot compete with me:
Our souls dance to the music of love.

My lover snuggles in bed with a novelist,
His body is a book and he enthralls her with his tale.
But can he compete with the dual authorship of our love?

My Love melts when she hears
The singer’s melody, touching her breast.
His voice helped her through months of tears.
But can he compete with my lullaby?

She stands in awe of great men in history.
Their stature casts a long shadow
Over my insignificant life.
But can they compete with my story,
A biography she knows better than any--
The story that she has now lovingly entered?

Writers, poets, musicians, artists. . . and dancers–
They all add to our love of the world around us.
Enjoyment of those outside of ourselves makes us whole.
Our love lets go of having to be the best, the one and only.
She is free to be herself, and to love creativity around her.
Our art is the freedom from jealousy, a tandem dance of love.

Note on the "singer's voice": Miguel di Genova of "Otras Aires" sang to my fiancée all the way home from a very sad time in her life. Why would I be jealous of the great artists and friends in my her life?'

Mark has written an alternative version of this poem which you can view by clicking on the link.