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Rachel Talley Mar 2012
Strolling along in Venice
With a shopping cart as home
Traveling through the city’s streets
Not homeless alone.

“This is it, Jerry!”
Then a shot rang loud
Our shock was spoken
Then we looked around

Our shopping cart was stolen
Our little turned to none
With little arguing or discussion
The chase had now begun

Running through the streets of Venice
Without a shopping cart or home
Frenzy in the city’s streets
Shopping cart-less alone.
Written in 7th grade and recently rediscovered.

Copyright © Rachel Talley
Rachel Talley Mar 2012
The crimson curtain climbs.
Everyone stares.
Expectations shatter the silence.
Pressure mounts.
I know what I must do.
I have a script.
It must be followed.
It is what they want.
It is what I must do.
I crave tears,
But I must wear a smile.
It is written in the script.
Smile, it pleads –
The brown skirt, the director dictates.
That’s what he wants.
I am expected to follow.
I like the yellow one better.
But I’ll pretend otherwise.
I hope they don’t notice my moment of
Escaping the role-
Impossible feat.
Risky –
Too risky.
Shunned –
The obvious outcome.
So here I’ll stand frozen:
My bones aching for growth,
Tentacles of self irking for change,
Blood boiling for new vision.
My fears show my consequences,
The consequences outweigh the rewards.
I am an actor on a stage
Wanting so much more for myself
But stuck on this dusty wood floor
Waiting for my curtain to go down.
The title is an allusion to Shakespeare's *As You Like It* where Jacques utters the famous phrase: "All the world's a stage, and all the men and women merely players"

— The End —