I spied you standing in the wings

With your hand on the lever,

Hair thick with dust clumps and splinters.

They thought you one of their own,

But I knew different.


In the night I could hear

That inner asylum of shrieks and contortions —

Your world in renovation only half complete.

Wild eyes and bared teeth,

Ready to pounce at any moment.


Strapped into the harness of insanity.

Not yours. Borrowed.

Stuck, like a test pilot in a flight gone wrong.

The single rotating axle of an intemperate smile

Drenched in fear.