10-Line Tuesday

August 13, 2019

the sideliners

They are not taking the stage. They’re shy of microphones, slip like young deer
toward the vicinity of an exit, where they are comforted by the hard shape of a door.
Whoever they meet will immediately forget their name, their line of work, what color 
their eyes are. They will shift imperceptibly when the room crowds, narrowing
their already tidy real estate. They will exhibit an infinitesimal patience as the jostle
of bodies rubs the veneer of jubilance thin. And they will listen. They will pay
delicate attention. They will sense the colliding perfumes of ambition and mishap. 
They will memorize the creases of loss. They will name the gleam in the eyes of lovers.
They will feel the nodular geography of disappointment, the slopy turns of desire.
They will carry these stories home. They will tell them to no one.