“The Dragon Can’t Dance” by Sheree Renée Thomas

A tweet introduced me to this magazine, and through it to this story. I hope my followers appreciate it as much as I did. Good reading, the whole magazine.

Jalada

The Dragon Can't Dance


The first time I danced, I hated it. Six years old, skinny as a string bean, shy, observant, the last thing I wanted was to be pulled into my nana’s long, strong arms, and swept onto the makeshift dance floor at her birthday party. My hair was tightly braided, laced with the new gold and white beads Mama bought just for the occasion. My freshly oiled temples smelled like heaven, hurt like hell. Coconut and mango braids throbbed with the thunk, thunka-thunka that thumped from wood veneer speakers sprawled across two wobbly card tables in a corner of the garden. Nana threw back her head and pranced, that’s right, pranced past my two uncles, my sisters, Papa and Mama, past all her old neighbors and church friends, and rolled her ample hips like a much younger woman. I was scandalized! Everyone clap clapped and howled at the vision, bellies full…

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