“Strange Ballet”

This song, and subsequent video, express my thoughts and feelings after a derecho swept through the city of Cedar Rapids, Iowa in the summer of 2020. As a resident of Cedar Rapids, I experienced firsthand the loss of 65% of our tree canopy. The state of Iowa lost over $7 million trees. Watching an incredibly large crane slowly and carefully lift a branch from my neighbor’s damaged roof, it appeared to be much like a delicate ballet.

The concept is to show the tree or branch as a metaphor for a ballerina. How lovely and delicate she is in all her changing beauty throughout the year. The crane is a metaphor for the male dancer. Together they perform a pas de deux. 

Link to video:


“Strange Ballet” Lyrics

What is this strange ballet

This pas de deux of branch and crane

This odd and awful 

Cirque de Soleil


His muscles, sinew, bones of steel

Lift the lifeless, sweet Giselle

From the shattered footlights 

Where she fell


As he lifts her gently through the air

Sequin floating everywhere

From her tattered tutu   

Once so fair


She was our prima ballerina

She danced for us with every breeze

In her arms the songbirds sang

The sweetest melodies

She cooled us with her soothing shade

She warmed our hearts with autumn blaze

Her silhouette at end of day

She was our poetry, our fairest lady

Our beauty and our grace


For years and years she slowly grew       

‘Til she became our favorite view

Taking center stage 

To rave reviews   


Every season a costume change

Pink chiffon in gentle rain

Green organza

Golden lace


Suddenly we’re left to mourn

As limb from limb she was torn

By this angry dance

This frightful storm


With all the company she lies in state

On every street they silent wait

For their final, solemn  

Resting place


Hear the tolling of the bell

For our beautiful Giselle

Say a final, fond 

Fare thee well


Come next spring we’ll set the stage

For curtain calls and rose bouquets

Never to forget

This strange ballet


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