Poet: Vincas Mykolaitis-Putinas
Dates: 6 January 1893 – 7 June 1967
Title of Poem: The Dancer
A famous conductor
And an unknown dancer
Who came from somewhere to the great stage.
I will play for you one single dance.
Memorize that dance
And don’t look for any other,
And don’t think of anything else,
Just dance and dance and dance.
Perhaps your head will spin
And the spotlights will dim –
Don’t pay attention,
Just dance and dance.
And when the new dawn begins to break
You, too, will be another.
But today don’t think of anything else,
Just dance, just dance
That one single dance.
Good. We are both prepared.
Let them raise the black curtain!
Play for me Saint-Saens’
Brief Biography: Putinas was an ordained priest who doubted his mission within the priesthood. He caused a scandal in 1933 when he published the novel Shadow of the Altarsabout a priest doubting and ultimately renouncing his calling. In 1935 Putinas renounced the priesthood. Putinas was also a poet.