I looked in the crowd from a lonely stage. They sat their waiting to decide if I am great enough for them to put their hands together. Somehow I care about what these strangers think. My palms are sweaty, heart beating against my rib cage, and my mouth is dry. I take a sip of water before I approach the mic. I don’t picture anyone naked because I don’t have that great of an imagination. I choose not to focus on that beautiful woman smiling in the front row. Instead I find the old man crossing his legs waiting for me to be just another act. We catch I contact and I start to speak to him. I watch the angry creases soften in his face. I smile! He knows I caught him enjoying himself so he sits upright in his chair. He doesn’t realize I am just going to take credit for correcting his posture. I continue! I watch his chest now beating the same pace as mine. Mine has slowed and his has increased. We are forming a connection.  I pause! He shows disappointment wanting me to continue. I start again! Sighing in relief his intrigue intensifies. My tone elevates. He jumps, his eyes widen, and he laughs at himself. My voice softens. Tears invade his pupils and attack his cheeks. I finish! He is the first one out his seat to applaud. He was a victim of inspiration….


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