by Thorne Compton
My sister was born beautiful.
When she arrived her beauty was so powerful
that some people could not bear to look at her
It was so rare
that she would always be unique
My mother was filled with wonder, and
With fear and sadness.
In the midst of her joy and pain—as she pondered the meaning
of this strange gift,
I was conceived.
In the dark room, as I floated in the sea of my mother’s love,
I absorbed all her ecstasy and pain.
Her echoed questions
And guilty tears
And so I became the Other.
Bound to both.
As my sister was the child of heaven—
I was of the earth.
As her spirit could not be contained by her body
My body moved from the beginning
to the rhythm of her spirit.
Today we three, mother, angel,
twined for forty years,
Having shared one body, are bound by beauty
to dance to this secret music.
This poem was written by a dear friend and chair of the department of Theater and Dance where I worked for many years at USC. I choreographed several dances in my life as a dancer to help me understand the relationship I had with Cindy. I asked Thorne to write a poem for a dance I was making about my relationship with Cindy, my Mom and me and this is what he came up with. It feels right to share it.
Thorne Compton was/is a beautiful soul and man of great integrity. I admired him so much while I worked with him at USC.