"the stage begs" by traci kato-kiriyama


the stage begs


(for Marie-Reine, Peter, Julia and Stefanie)
Saturday, August 26, 2011 at Fais Do-Do for Artists at Play




sometimes we believe we must beg for the arena 

they took
and we protested
without arms

stood by while they
promised her the
green car and
a red carpet,
"no lines just yet,
but stand
over there,
nice and straight,
drop your chin,
and by your own
synch your waist,
strap your watch
to our clock,
you're on call now"

she followed and
we watched without
while she shrank
into the folds of her skin

sometimes we stand center with our voice caught in the wings 

when they took
we scathed
without tongues

witnessed as they
promised the
world for
Making It
so long as he
carry their dictionary
as his bible

signed their notes
of promise
to be placed
tenth folder
on the shelf
ever since
so he's back
doing admin
five days a week
at his office desk

sometimes the proscenium sucks back the light

their identities were
encased in glass

fragmented limbs stuck
behind a beveled cabinet
eyes bulging,
cheeks stuck to the front,
next to dusty sets of
hollow gold statues

and we know too
this story

so this poem
shall end in
another world

sometimes within the black box are the only remaining bones 

in some
great wash of light,
some brilliant pool of

not another dimension
near the Rosette Nebula,
nor even
the four Galilean moons
of Jupiter

it must end here
in brick walls
concrete dance floors
bad traffic
and elusive street parking

with 4 souls
in overalls
and paint buckets
and a revered donation box

and a big city with
small town life experience
standing at the edge
of its sandy roads
to protest you from
the high rollers
who'd rather offer you
straight jackets
than sincere nods

our feeble fingers
may pinch at
tiny pockets
our hands will
pull from big hearts
who know
something about
your blood and tears
and sweat

and we will be there
in the round
before the play has been penned

in the thrust
before it has been sanded down,

at the front of the house
next to critics who've
crossed their arms
before the show has begun,

your silk scrim,

your humble backdrop,

running up and down tbhe rake,

we will be your apron wings

sometimes, that is all and everything you will need






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