Maundy

The spotlight is blinding
when you’re standing on the stage
and I’m standing on the stage,
believe me.

I’ve worn grooves in the hardwood
from my back and forth, back and forth,
giving the operator a run for his money
trying to keep me flooded in light.

My palms are sweaty and the mic is sticky
because I’ve got a lot to say about a lot of things
and I’ve never wavered from saying them,
at the top of my lungs, spittle notwithstanding.

I’m a mess, and so’s my performance space,
and my performance, and my life, and the state of things.

But I like it up here in the oppressive light and
with all these eyes on me because
the squeaky wheel gets the grease and
the people follow the one who leads and
even if I’m uncomfortable with that
it’s about time I get used to it
because I’ve had a caravan behind me for years.

My life is a gift and I am a treasure
and I wish I knew the right words to tell you
that this is a gift and that you are a treasure
and that there’s always someone in the wings
or the green room waiting for me to finish my show
but there’s never been anyone there
I’ve wanted to come home triumphant to
more than you.

There’s so much to say
because there’s so much to be mad at
but I live for the moments when the spotlight goes dark
and the applause starts
but it’s not the audience of followers I got without wanting,
it’s me, standing alone in the dark up there and clapping,
cheering, grateful that sometimes the world
gives us gifts and that I know a treasure when I see it
and have the platform to make sure
the world sees it for what it is,
too.

~3/28/13

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