Saturday, 5 September 2015


Maureen Clifford © The #ScribblyBark Poet

Spawned in the backstreet brothels
and bordellos of Buenos Aires
the ballet –like dance
‘the tango of the compadron’
between consenting males

Men danced -
locked in symbolic mortal combat
in the steamy heat
– bodies brushing,
touching, embracing
in a dance of passion…

Until women were drawn
to the raunchy masculinity
of the predatory male
and wove their limbs sinuously
in syncopated rhythm
to the music of the guitars,
play acting the role
of pimp and prostitute
bodies pressed breast to chest.

Now sleek evening gowns
black tuxedos, top hats and spats
replaced the rough dress
of the compadron.
The argentine tango became gentrified.

But still on dark nights
on cobbled streets in corners of the old town
couples dance –
joined at the hip
beneath the light of the street lamps
to a guitar playing
with passion and fire

a syncopated  ostinato rhythm.
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