The stage is bare; void of life, void of music, void of specifics. Only possibilities remain.
I don’t like it: the empty floor, its vital tape – marking the difference between perfection and burning feathers – gone, tossed away, unneeded. The blank backdrop, the spotlights hanging limply in their places, the costumes, lying flat and unamusing in a pile of unwashed glory.
I hear a whispered cue and spin around, my eyes huge with wonder, but it’s just the wind through the open door. Just a memory of things past, of a summer over, a season complete.
My heart aches with the emptiness of that which ought to be filled.
Yes, it’s time to say goodbye to the theater for another year. Time to shut off the lights. To pull the curtains. To wave a final goodbye from the wings.
It’s time to retire my blue eye shadow. To throw my granny boots back into the closet. To eat my raisins rather than sing about them.
I remember other goodbyes. Other unworn costumes, empty playgrounds, bully pulpits void of bully preachers. I remember the wrongness of summer camp when the campers have all gone home, the echoes of laughter through the cabins, the mournful music of the swings set to rocking by the autumn winds.
Or what about empty hallways at the end of the school day, or rusting airplanes – their wheels held down by blackberry brambles – never again taking to the air, to the wild blue, to misty lands filled with musky scents and seductive offers? I have seen broken bicycles, torn sails, dusty dollhouses, unread books, that have set my heart yearning for their glory days.
Even empty flowerpots set my mind racing with the possibilities.
Possibilities. Potential. Undiscovered countries.
Who knew that I could do the things I have done? Who knows what lies ahead?
There will be more opportunities. More heart-wrenching conclusions. More empty hands, reaching for something to hold.
There will be more.
There will be.