Watching The Tightrope Walker


the charade is over
the riddle of the highwire act
is b-r-o-k-e-n
when the girl in the red tight pants
kisses the ground and bows to the crowd
applause here, whistle there
no safety net to catch the joie de vivre  

she knows the feeling very well

she looks up and sees
three vultures circling the Arizona sky
they glide as if they are riding the air
but she knows they have their eyes on her

this is a close call
she is throwing her balance a la fortuna
the tattered shoe, the arthritic knee
and a resolve eroding like light snow

the fine line between
breathing and not breathing
as she spans the length to the platform
she wonders if the devil will push her
she wonders if she is a fake somnambulist
she wonders if an angel is desensitizing her nerves

life is smaller
among forebodings and silences
each lonely step to fulfillment
is as drab as a momentary farce
the bigger picture will be
when she falls eighty feet down
and be a living memory
to the gasps of long-faced witnesses

for now she lives
like a wild flower hiding on a crease of fear
and she hates the part
when she has to beg the audience
to donate to the circus emergency fund.

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About Jay Coral


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Bio Jay Coral writes poems and stories. He has been published online and on print by small presses. He lives in Arizona where he drinks a lot of sun and daydreams about the ocean.
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