The Dance – A Poem

Introduction – This poem was written while listening to Beethoven’s “Fur Elise”. What an incredible inspiration. Please be sure to listen to this classical piece before or while reading this poem. This is more of a story than a poem but I just had to share because the image that came to my mind was so magical.

The Dance

The young lady cringes and sits
On the warm leather seat
Shading her eyes from the Summer Sun-
She sits shaking a snow globe
As time passes ever so slowly
Her heavy eyelids begin to close
And she begins to dream


A steady snowfall has begun outside
As she sways in the shadows
Of this cold and empty ballroom tonight

Her steps so full of indecision
As her gown sweeps in circles
Around and around again
Slowly then frantically she twirls

Then she stops – suddenly
Her eyes – his eyes – they meet
His fingers gently sweep the keys
Of a grand piano
And then – like a wound up doll
she begins to dance again

And as she moves his music follows
Her eyes are closed as she
Twirls from window to window

Her silver gown shimmers
By the blue glow from outside
That lights their dream world
And her powder gloves slide
Along the sides of the piano
Until they rest beside his own
And their fingers intertwine


The young woman jolts from sleep
As the carriage picks up speed
She shivers momentarily
Despite the heat as
She gazes at the globe
A smile starts to melt into place
As the driver opens her door
And welcomes the princess home

By Gretchen Leary 2012

About Gretchen McIntire (formerly Leary)

I am 34 years old, I live in the Raleigh area, and I am writing from the perspective of an individual with Asperger's Syndrome.
This entry was posted in Music, Poetry and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

29 Responses to The Dance – A Poem

  1. I loved this, so powerful. I could imagine myself as this young lady as the princess dancing. Smiles. I hope 2013 treats you well when it comes.

    • Thank-you. Some of my most intense poetry is inspired by Beethoven. His work is always intense and always challenges me to really sit and think “What is he trying to tell the world?” It means sitting and listening to the piece 10-20xs on repeat.

      Thankyou for your words 🙂 The Dance was fun to write but hard. I could picture it but had a hard time putting it into words. Sort of like a combination of the ballroom from Beauty in the Beast mixed with the feeling I get while listening to The Phantom of the Opera. 🙂

      Hope you have a wonderful new year!

      • A Quiet Week says:

        How beautiful! I love that you let the music guide you. I too, listen to Beethoven, over and over and over. For me, I see colors and textures rather than words.

        Lovely to find your poem!

        Lori D.

      • 🙂 Isn’t his music amazing? You might like my Ivory at Midnight. It’s inspired by Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9

      • A Quiet Week says:

        “Ivory at Midnight” Yes! I hear the ring to it. Number 9 is my Dad’s favorite. I grew up to the sound of him bellowing out “Ode to Joy!” I shall check it out! 🙂


  2. Magical…like the opening of jewellery box…

  3. Fantastic poem Gretchen.

  4. Nara Malone says:

    Beautifully romantic and lovely images. I feel like I was inside a dream.

  5. ayala says:

    Beautiful images. Lovely poem. Happy New Year !

  6. David Eric Cummins says:

    Lovely. I could hear the music as I read this.

  7. I love the image of the music following the girl. This is a beautiful poem. Thanks for sharing.

  8. brian miller says:

    what a magical verse…reminds me a bit of the nutcracker story…but i think snow globes are magical themselves…this is like a little fairy tale, wonderful…

    was short on time earlier so i just grabbed the one, glad i came back….

  9. Ah, Fur Elise! Oh that I would have kept practicing classical music. Once upon a time I could play this piece. Maybe it’s time to dust off some of the old music, lol. Magical piece to go with magical music!

    • Thank-you Lori. 🙂 This one was similar to the feeling I got when writing my poem “Silhouettes” to Moonlight Sonata. The music seems to go in rounds with both pieces. Gotta love Beethoven 🙂

  10. Kelvin S.M. says: the ‘Fur Elise’ your poems plays a magical notes of a special romance… i will be reading this now & again.. happy new year.. smiles..

  11. Karen says:

    Beautiful story! This is so visual that I can see it clearly, and when I play Fur Elise, it becomes magical.

  12. kaykuala says:

    Beethoven really rakes in the music! To appreciate classical is the ultimate. Not many has that opportunity much less favoring with a verse. Great take Gretchen!


  13. stuartmcphersonpoet says:

    Firstly, apologies im late, and happy new year. This is actually a beautiful piece of writing. It has such a fairytale quality to it, it made me visualise the dream-scape that you paint so vividly. Because of the way its written, it had a Victorian feel to it…and it bought into my mind images along the lines of the lion, the witch, ad the wardrobe. And the fact you were inspired by the music?…well you can see it and feel and hear it throughout this..

    • Yes, perfect era. I envisioned a castle, and a grand ball gown and ball room and a horse drawn carriage. I envisioned the dark ball room being lit by the blue light from the snow outside turning the ballroom into a snow globe 🙂

      You definitely seem to be able to connect with my work. Thankyou so much!

  14. Imelda says:

    I love this piece of music. Your poem is as dreamy as the music that inspired it. I can imagine the young lady carried away by her daydreams and myself getting lost in my own young dreams. 🙂

    • Thank-you! That is quite a compliment!

      I loved writing it. It felt like writing a dream. I wrote it while it was snowing outside and thought it would give it more meaning if it was really Summer outside the dream, then the snow globe came to mind and then I thought what if she was IN the snow globe? It was a journey to end to the end of the poem 🙂

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