• Mackenzie Kane

Is the Dance Over?

She remembers their first dance.

It’s October 2013. She’s wearing a silver “princess dress” with matching shoes and a small tiara to tie it together. He’s wearing slacks, a nice silver-ish gray button down shirt and a black necktie.

The first song that plays at the father/daughter dance put on by her Brownies troop was “Brown Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison.

After that father/daughter dance, their dancing never stopped.

It’s not a nice waltz they do, more like playful swaying and swinging and spinning.

They dance to Christmas songs every year once the tree is decorated.

They dance at family reunions and weddings.

They dance after she’s had a long day at school and he’s had a long day at work.

She is on vacation at Norris Lake with her family and a few others. It is the middle of the day. She climbs up the ladder, out of the water and onto the deck. Frank Sinatra’s “The Way You Look Tonight” is playing over the speakers, and her dad, more than a few drinks in, grabs her hand.

They dance and sing.

As she got older, her dad was always there. During her ridiculous “I don’t know who I am” phase her sophomore year to her next identity crisis that came the beginning of junior year, when it was time for her to apply to college. Through it all, he was there.

There was always a song to dance to.

At the end of junior year, the music threatened to stop.

She remembers it as clearly as she remembers her first dance with her father.

Mom calls her sister and her up from the basement.

With tears in her eyes, she can’t get the words out.

“He has cancer, doesn’t he?” her oldest asks.

“Yes,” Mom says.

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