This life is a book I shudder to read
characters enter and fade from the text
as I turn the pages.
There are fewer characters
fewer friends now
still, I read about myself in the past tense
and realise it had the makings of a Hollywood movie
with special effects and original soundtrack
with the camera panning, from one scene to the next
in a fantasy world that never truly existed
because it never could.
I played the part of numerous characters
none of which looked like me
I was trying to find my place in this big picture
trying to find my face in the crowd
I was taking off costume after costume
peeling back layer after layer
to find myself.
I often forgot my lines, missed my cues
botched the stunts
I was a bad actor.
With every costume I left strewn behind me
the more I exposed of myself
my tough exterior gone, my bravado undone
my confidence and strong words
my health failing, bones aching
my energy to fight falling away.
My past was a sham marriage
between who I was and who I always dreamt I could be
I had nothing to prove to anybody except me
I had big dreams and ambitions
I had curiosities
made bad decisions
I was writing this book for half of my life before I realised
half my life was gone and, I had not yet found myself
I’d never truly lived at all.
In the present tense
I unwrite the book, word for word
I peel the layers down to the bone
I take off my face paints
my glitter and gown
I strip myself down to the soul
and letter by letter
the words fall from my pages.
Chapter one: (Reading)
-The day I was born I was 42 years old
I’m just starting to find my feet now
one day I will stand up on my own.