by Craig Kurtz












Every day I take the stage,
performing sundry characters
to harmonize with friends
and make peace with motley strangers.

I wake up without makeup,
the script is virgin paper;
my closet’s full of costumes
and the world is in rehearsal.
I’m a youngster to my father
and a sage around my daughter;
I’m a farceur with my brother
and the lover of my wife.
I’m a bon vivant at dinner
and a clergyman at lunch;
I’m a crosspatch over breakfast
and a rascal after midnight.
I’m a subject to the King
and a sovereign to my servants;
I’m a fool to common wights
and a peer to rival wits.
I’m a rogue around the pious
and a saint to criminals;
I’m a scamp next to the pompous
and a coxcomb to the dull.
I’m a jester for the churl
and a misanthrope to fops;
I’m a libertine compared to bores
and a pedant to the cyprian.
I play the scholar in the village
and a rustic when at court;
I’m just a number on a payroll
then a cynosure at home.
I’m a villain to the evil
and a hero to the just;
I’m the opposite of sensible
when the dialogue goes bust.
To many, I’m a silhouette,
mere fantoccini at stage rear,
and yet at times I thrust the plot
when fate invents, extempore.

Every day I take the stage, performing impromptu;
whether tragic roles or the burlesque,
the spectator, not the actor,
there anent may choose.

Category: Poetry