Jimmy tried not to let the nerves show. The crowd was enthusiastic but had not wandered into total drunkenness yet. This was the opportunity he was waiting for, had waited for all night.
(more) Earlier, when the first act come on he sat at the back of the club. There weren't many people there at that stage and they treated her like background noise. He felt sorry for her, and them. She was very good. Her nerves did get the better of her a few times. She hid it well and he didn't think anyone noticed. Well, wouldn't have noticed it they were listening.
Her songs were bitter sweet ballads about lost love and lost innocence. She had a few uptempo songs thrown in and these did manage to get some feet tapping.
The second act got more attention. This was largely due to him coming on and hurling a serious amount of abuse at the crowd for ignoring Lydia. He suggested that they all fuck off if they didn't want to listen to the music. One or two people laughed thinking he was some sort of alternative comic but a stare that splurged pure evil in their direction corrected their mistake.
Not unexpectedly his songs were angry, even his love songs. It was actually quite interesting to see someone singing about total and utter devotion to another human being while being vein pulsingly red faced from the effort of reaching maximum force and volume.
Now it was his turn. He liked to think of it as the headline slot but it wasn't really. He was the guy who just got lucky. Well to be honest it was act two who got lucky and made his choice first, then Lydia, then he got the last slot.
Anna and I met mis en scene, already in love. All we- the audience/protagonists- had to do was catch up with the story. Those first nights were long and expository histories, at first filled with our best stories and moments and then with our darker hours. All of those(more) stories had led us here, to each other, so they were all good stories. We absorbed and ignored each other's faults.
After five months Anna's lease was up on her apartment. That fact hovered between us for a few days before the serious conversations began. We talked about how soon it was, how our lives were, and, eventually, how much sense it made. She moved in.
And now, a year later, I once again find myself head-swimmingly placed in the middle of the action for dramatic effect, with no idea of what was really going on. We are arguing, but it's not the usualy fatigued late-night argument. It seems obscene and garish to be arguing like this in the kitchen with daylight streaming through the windows.
"You said you could change it. You said you could make it work!" Anna is yelling at me.
"Don't throw that back at me like I was taking the blame! We were both going to do things differently, remember?"
"Then maybe it's just not worth the effort!"
And then, right away: "Maybe it's not!"
The daylight is obnoxious now, exposing everything. There's no place for this climax to hide. Somewhere here, at the end of Act II, we know that the action is over.
We stay together a while longer, the heat simmers down. We stop seeing the same friends and we separate our things over the following weeks. That was all we had left after that moment: the closing act.(less)
Its amazing how we got this far,
feels like we spent our whole lives chasing,
the dream, the wish, the goal.
I never thought we would actually make it,
now that we have, I have my doubts,
I have my reservations.
(more) You see, I spent my whole life chasing and now I'm here,
the problem is I never imagined what I would do now,
how I would carry forth this voyage,
how to reach the final page.
His breathing had become laboured. As I sat beside him, I could see him deteriorate. He was failing, and fast. For so long now I had been bracing myself, preparing, psyching myself up and now that it was upon us, I all of a sudden felt so rushed. It was as if all(more) I had planned to do and say had got trapped in the funnel of my emotions and I found I couldn't bring myself to do or say anything. His hand felt both cold and clammy at the same time. I could hear my own heart beating in my throat. It seemed the stronger mine sounded, the weaker he looked. I had so many unspoken words to say to this man. How could I thank him and also forgive him for the so many rights and wrongs he had done to me in my life. The room was heavy with the scent of hopelessness. The frame that could strike terror in me as a small boy was now diminished. It barely caused a lump under the bedclothes. This was the end. "Father....." I faltered, encountering an unfamiliar obstruction in my throat. Was this the elusive lump in the throat that people spoke of? "Father..." I tried again. "Spit it out boy", rasped the old man, losing none of his impatience in the face of death. He dissolved into a fit of coughing. "Father, I'll keep the business going, after, you know, after.....". His shrewd eyes cleared for a moment, it was as if for the first time he was looking me and really seeing me with clarity. "Behind safe in the store room, find the secret stow shelf, take the letters, never let them be found". At this the light faded from his eyes. The curtain came down.(less)
Everyone was in position. The Corilino brothers had the stage manager tied up in his office. Simon had the Girl and James was all set up by the stage lights. Three months of planning and the night was finally here. This was it. Tonight we ether live or we(more) die. It's the closing act.(less)
“Dammit man, close his eyes! He is staring right through me!” Jonathan clenched his pocket watch through his three-piece suit. The doctor pulled the eyelids down, but the corpse’s face remained menacing.
(more) “Silly Jonathan,” he said in his deep European accent, “the true effect of the theater is not experienced during the play … it only creeps into your heart in the dark silence after the curtain falls.”