Piles upon piles of stapled booklets, the
highlighted print read so many times
he swears that they’re burned onto the inside of his eyelids.
for it’s his responsibility to shape his voice,
his character, until the puzzle piece fits perfectly with all the others,
locked into place, just what the director wants
it’s just a bit of a long process, that’s all
translating his lines from two-dimensional text on paper
into raw emotion, articulation, projection
from his eyes to his mouth.
A flawless performance doesn’t come from sitting and waiting.
She, too, has got piles, not
filled with colons and light cues but
of watercolours, of abandoned
shapes that she has given up on.
It’s tough, chasing the artworks you
envision in your mind’s eye, and then
making eye contact with the monstrosity that
greets you from the page.
Haphazardly she flings lines of grey on to white
sheets bound together as an exhibit of trial and error,
flipping through will show you that
fully completed works are few and far between
yet she doesn’t give up. She never drops the pencil.
She’s not simply waiting until she gets good at this.
And myself? Well, I’ve got piles, not
splattered with paint or purple highlighter but
adorned monochromatically with printer ink
with staffs, clefs, and, how’s that rhythm go again?
Not much variation at first glance, other than
weird jazz fonts that make me squint. But
I digress. Sometimes I wonder how my
flimsy little fingers have made it this far,
how my lungs haven’t caved in
and if, upon hearing me, the composer would
wince in sheer agony, or perhaps his skeletal remains
perpetually have his bony hands over his ear-holes
because of those just like me.
Sometimes I retreat to my room, hands
aching, bewildered by the sudden absence
of sun (was it dark out when I started?)
and I tire, but stress and injury aside,
I cannot wait to play those melodies again.
I cannot wait to grow and improve.