I am supposed to be Anne Frank
But I just feel like myself, pretending
I did not think that I would have been able to feel all of these eyes on me when I signed up for this.
It was much easier to write down my name on the list
Pick up one of the monologues from the table
Say “Yeah, I can read that,”
Than actually read it.
The words shook almost as much as my hands as they
Tumbled from my mouth fading into nothing before they could touch the floor
I did not know this monologue was about Anne Frank before I had to stand up in front of all these people and
The tears blurred the words on the page and I do not know how I could see to make it back to my seat
It was like drowning.
I walked out of that room swearing to myself I would never do that again.
Only one year later, I did it again
I stood up on a different stage, feeling different eyes lasering into my skin
And I was not Anne Frank
But this time I was not myself either.
This time my words fly out of my mouth fill the room.
I feel myself leave my body for just a split second
And the director sees it too.
I am cast in the play
And two months later I stand on the stage
A thousand eyes are watching,
Not me but someone else.
I am speaking someone else’s words
But they feel Iike mine
I give a little light to everyone watching
And this time I walk off stage swearing to myself I will never stop.