Elle Lien, Grade 10, Sefton High School -
Laboured breaths echoed around the mirrored room, a lone figure stood in the room, face obscured by the occasional light. Their arms outstretched and legs bent in the final position of the dance, holding the position for a couple of beats before their shoulders finally relaxed, chest heaving as a result of doing the tiresome movements of her routine. Mi Van dropped onto the ground with a large sigh - one of relief or frustration or both. Lying still on the ground, all that could be heard was the erratic beating of her heart and the heavy breaths she emitted.
Mi Van suddenly let out a deafening shriek of frustration, “Useless, why are you so useless? Why can’t you just do this properly? Why can’t you do the only thing you’re supposed to be good at properly?”
She had to get better, she knew she could do better. She had to be better, there are so many more talented and hardworking dancers, and she had to shine as bright as the sun on stage. On the stage she had to be the sun’s equal, she must soar above the other dancers.
She had to push herself harder.
Starting up the music again, Mi Van stood in the starting position with her legs folded underneath her body and arms outstretched like a bird’s wings. The first beats of the song rang through the room, Mi Van moved along with the song, doing leaps and turns that were perfectly synchronised with the song. When dancing, she finally felt free - free from the stresses of school, free from responsibilities, free from the crushing pressure of this recital. Mi Van felt as if she flying, ascending past the weight of the world, flying through the structures that had kept her grounded; she kept ascending, up and up, the further up she got the freer she felt. She felt a surge in her strength as tempo increased, she thought about nothing but herself and dance.
And all she wanted was to leave the world behind in search of better things.
A flood of bright light abruptly filled the room, “Mi it’s time to go home, the studio is about to close up,” a voice spoke.
The shock of the sudden entrance of another person made her unexpectedly stop and trip over her own legs before falling and landing loudly onto the floor. Her weight collapsing onto the hard wooden floor of the dance room, impact reverberating across her ankle.