88 – High Wired

Poem number 88
.
High Wired
.
He glided across the High Wire. Tiny confident step after tiny confident step
Tunic gleaming in the spots, tight trousers, gloves of white
Sculpted body and the face of Johnny Depp
The audience loved him. Eyes sparkling they sat in silent delight
.
Until someone sneezed. A small wobble. His concentration wrecked.
A bigger wobbling step. Another. Desperate arms flung to the side
And a plunge. Down. Down. To an end he could hardly expect
As the net broke. His head hit the floor. He died
.
In a flash, a baby bird fallen forever from its tree
And shattered. Never to return to the skies above.
The audience inhaled. Screamed in terror, or was it glee
At the end of one for whom they’d declared their love?
.
For what is the High Wire but an invitation to the feast?
The promise of tragedy. An opportunity. The slightest chance
To witness disaster, or misfortune at least
For the demigod. Up there on a wire and paid to dance.
.
So the women screamed. Peeking through loosely woven fingers
At the blood. The bone. The end
Of it all. And for them the memory lingers
Through taxi rides home and stiff gins before they embark on a night they will spend
.
In bed. With a lover. Re-enacting the plunge in their mind
As they succumb to ecstasy. Sex is death is sex once more
And in all the world what else could they find
But the High Wire, to sate them. And endure.

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