The Poetry Reading

Dedicated to
careforbooks
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This poem is deticated to careforbooks because her heart is pure.

 

The Poetry Reading

The room is alive with imagination. Thousands of voices hushed in whispered admiration. I’m scared, but I miss this.

Fascination.

It has been so very long since I did this.

Inspiration.

“Listen to this!” a mother behind me reads a line to her daughter.

 The rolling tide.

The tried.

The fodder.

Between truth and lies,

I found,

despite my tries

that I

deep inside

possess

the love of a father.

They are words that I recognize. My words, spoken in an awed and solemn tone, from her lips, like a moan of ecstasy, her mind already infatuated with me, entranced by my words alone.

And as I sit, with my back to the crowd, no matter how loud they get, or how proud I am of my accomplishments, I still feel completely alone.

The curator upfront introduces me. He lists off a list of my achievements with dignity, reducing my flagrant humanity to nothing more than a fist full of papers.

A catalog of titles.

A dialogue of waivers.

An epilogue, producing a golden idol.

But I accept it regardless. What else can I do? I stand to their applause, and without a word step slowly forward to a “beat unheard” that leads me quickly and undeterred to a podium that looms at the front of the room.

And without looking up from the shaking paper in my hands, I begin to read it, methodically, hypnotically, I proceed to break through my own reserve and defeat my brazen fears.

 Words—flow—at a rapid pace.

Sweat—slow—runs down my face.

Wet—I know—but I hold the trace,

allowing my emotions to finally surface and echo throughout the hall. And despite it all, my trembling hands, my weak legs, my stomach in a knot, I gain courage through passion and finally look up.

Our eyes lock, and…

 

I have you.

 

Your eyes are wide as they stare into mine, as if you’re hypnotized, as if you are mesmerized by the sound of my rhyme. And for the very first time in my 31 years, I don’t feel completely alone. Because…

 

I have you

 

Your cheeks are flushed. Your lips are parted, and move softly in unconscious reverie. Your mind is glued to me—stuck on my every word. Your is head tilted to one side, as you lean forward, with your tiny chin resting on your hands…

your head turns…

and…

 

I have you.

 

The words...Their sounds...Slipping down the page and off my tongue with ease, cover the ground that you sit upon and soak seamlessly through your soul. So pure, that it confounds the lie I’ve always lived by. The broken truth created to tie me to my loneliness. The unspoken prove that I am alone. But…

 

I have you.

 

As if through these simple words of mine, my soul cries, and your soul hears, and understands the lies and fears that bring my tired eyes to tears.

 

I have you.

 

I do.

 

And somehow, as your lips move silently in perfect melody with me, I think perhaps, you have me too. It’s like we’re the same. Because our hearts cry together, our minds, joined through whatever…

in this moment,

in this beauty,

in this pain...

 

I have you.

 

Yet I know, as I retreat back to my reality, that despite the perfection of our totality, the end is bittersweet. Because like all perfect art, all too soon, our moment—this moment—will be complete.

 

You will leave this place.

I will remain.

You will forget my face.

I will stay doggedly the same.

And even though I know I will never even know your name,

I maintain that…

 

I have you.

 

You will live your life.

You will find your faith in this world.

You will hang tightly to hope.

You will fall love.

 

But…

 

In this instant,

through this rhyme,

in this perfect second and a half of endless time,

timeless proof,

proof less love,

 

I

have

you.

 

And somehow,

this simple truth

is

simply

 

enough.

 

 

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