#188: Blackheath Nights

You wonder what she is made of if it isn’t glitter and stars.
She shines brightly onstage: incomplete but always giving everything she’s got.
It’s a fusion of solidarity and abstinence, soldered together with motherly love and granola bars.

She stands so far from the crowd.
She’s worked so hard to stand so tall and sing so loud.
It’s like nothing they’ve seen before.
They’ve seen it from far away, but never this up close and, at the same time, so small.

Her make up crumbles under the lights.
And her face knows the smell of tiredness.

We don’t know who looks on but they can’t see any of this.
This anguish.
This strength.
It’s a fragmenting beautiful terrible picture of youthful prime and musical energy.

She’s demanded a platter of vegan sandwiches which she’s barely even touched.
The olive and baba ganoush didn’t quite sit right in her mouth so she’s given up.
Not for lack of trying.
Her mother had urged her along, sorting her nutrition and filing every rider she’s ever needed.
She’s always hungry when she gets on stage, never before.
She should have snacked earlier in the day.

Her voice breaks during the second number. This is part of her charm.

They clap and they sweep and they see.
They swoon

She is a speck in the distance, but she is their speck, who they have paid the megabucks to see.