“Act Up” by Nicole Zuleger

First recital,

Looking straight ahead,

Mind blank as a page.

Crowd drops deadly silent.

She covers her eyes.

This cannot be happening.


A moment of silence please for our fallen actress,

Frozen in her grave.

Cheer her off stage anyways.

She will be okay.

It is just a play.

No consequences…

No strings attached…


They say life is a production.

That is a blatant lie.

Productions come with manuals.

Life comes with mistakes that never end.

Enough string to hang yourself.

You cannot cover your eyes and be clapped away.

Mess up on the stage of life?

The show does not go on.


Life is like this.

You are thrown onto a stage you do not want to be on.

Everyone is staring.

You were not given a script or rehearsal schedule.

The lights are on.

Curtains up.

Dancers twirl.

Trumpet blares.

The crowd stares.



Expecting the performance of your life.

Blank as a page

Covered eyes


Fading lights.

Hold on tight.


This is not their performance.

Reach down deep.

Fight for your night.

Fuck the consequences.

Cut the strings.


If life is truly a production,

You are the damn lead.

Dancers leap for you.

Music lifts you.

Lights reveal you.

The crowd claps for you!

Act like it.

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