May 28, 2014

#85 2/2: The Cult, the Council and the End.

The Future, Here and Now
I knew how hard the fall would be from that place - and how high the hands would reach to catch and scratch at me if I called out, loud and quite clear... -Katherine Eastvold

This is Part 2 of Weekly WCS Note #85. Click here for Part One.

Saturday, February 26th 2011.

The date may not mean anything to you, but it means everything to me. It's the date of my very first swing intensive on something "more" than just swing. I didn't teach movement. I didn't teach basics. I taught history. I taught essentials. I broke away from the herd and I... I taught real West Coast Swing. 

It was treason. I knew it. But the right people had said yes, and the wrong people had said no and before I knew it...
I woke up on Christmas Day and saw the earth of our tiny world of swing break away and expand before and below me. I saw its future unfurling beneath me, stretching out its acts in stark resolution against its blackened flag.

I saw today. And I saw tomorrow. And before all of those, I saw Saturday, February 26th 2011. And the things I would first lay bare there.

I remember that day clearly.

I remember the room, the flyer, the white board, the smell of the brand new black dry erase markers that clicked open and closed like a pen, but wide and gaping instead...

I remember each face, each name and each moment each wonderful arrived. I remember every reaction to every statement in every brow, cheek and chin, and I remember every shift of movement in the room.

It was quiet at first, then grew quieter still as we waited. Waited to see if others would come, but no.

It was a small group. Smaller than small. The smallest workshop I have ever held in my life because I never placed the workshop or its title, contents or purpose in any email to any of my students, ever. Not even on Christmas.

I knew better. I knew how high up I was on the mountain. I knew how hard the fall would be from that place - and how high the hands would reach to catch and scratch at me if I called out, loud and quite clear.

Instead, on that day, I would take a tightly packed snowball, full of my secrets, sources and discoveries about swing and its community, and its harmony and its shame... and gently set it down before my feet.

And I knew that on that day, without any particular announcement or decree... I would nudge it. Off the mountain. Quietly and without force. But I did send it on its way, softly, purposefully and evenly.

And, as with all revolutions, the deed was done. It rolled softly, calmly and then suddenly with speed. It would grow and it did strengthen, up until the mountain swallowed it from my view. But I would look out far past the horizon, wondering what it would be when we arrived here.

Yet here we are. That day has finally come. It has been three years. Saturday, February 26th 2011. My tightly packed secrets gathered the world around it, with it they flew... until today - 

Today it, in its largess, and its rambling chaotic speed, cracked up against another mountain. My next mountain. And the sphere shattered at its feet - showering blood and snow and ice and snowflakes even, beautiful crystal snowflakes... everywhere. 

And as I look down and see what was, what's been and what's transpired, I turn a wounded and weary shoulder to it, and leave it... behind.

Katherine Eastvold

From Weekly Note #85: The Cult, the Council and The End, released February 2011. Revised and updated.