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by B. Z. Niditch

On the world stage since childhood
when you did impressions and played mime
a Chaplinesque scene followed you everywhere
on the schoolyard running headlong in relay races
over fields and water
bouncing off basketball courts and sports arenas
cheering up others at the movies
supermarket aisles
car lots and sickrooms
playing on beaches
in fun houses
expressing yourself in large mirrors
clowning in half speech
make-up lines
with a touch of false moustache patch or eyelash
at airports
playing a spy in a redhead band with a foreign accent
satire and sarcasm fooling everyone
to save your soul from put-downs
waging comic war non-stop with yourself
at camp
in talent shows
and competitions
all in Oedipal fashion
being called Shakespeare or Charlie Chaplin
by strangers
street-wise on cue since you were eight
or shrouded from whispers of secret gossips
covering up the tell-tale poet of our time

Copyright © 2012 by B. Z. Niditch

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