Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Writing

The Joy Of Performing

Lights up ahead,

hiding you from my view,

as I stand at the edge of expectation,

butterflies in my stomach,

my children in my mouth.

I don’t want to disappoint you,

but I imagine myself in your place,

and worry that I always will.

The lights linger,

ever stronger,

as the applause fades,

impatience begins.

I’m wearing cheap hoop earrings,

my grandmother’s ring,

my self doubt sticks in my throat,

so I drink in some stuffy air,

peppered with my perfume,

and bite my bottom lip,

tasting golden gloss and freezing fear.

My children are impatient.

I’ve told them that they’re loved so many times,

that they began to believe it,

now they long to meet the lovers who have paid to pick them apart (I never told them about that part),

so,

I take the children,

one by one,

and show them off to a gasping,

grateful crowd,

my smiling children shine,

stepping,

shy along the stage,

shimmering in the spotlight,

coming alive,

growing and glowing with adoration.

When the lights leave,

I am exhausted,

existing,

because I can do no more,

disassociating in a dressing room,

surrounded by my children,

their edges frayed,

pages parched and crumpled in tired hands.

I can still hear the applause,

and for a second,

it sustains me.

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