You don't forget


The energy is fierce and flush with
earth and wind, fire and water
footprints and breath, heart and sweat.

Once you've been here, you don't forget.

Crouch in the wings,
whirled whispers
Stand under spotlight,
bouncing bright from voice to voice
as you've done over and over and over again,
because practice makes
no, not quite perfect,
but comfy, and jokey, and more than that bubbles under
the surface, even as the crowd chuckles fresh.

Every scene and song has a story
that you built through these countless hours,
a root system that is yours alone,
even as you take joy in sharing the blooms.

When harmonies blend,
when moments meld
it's as if
you hold up the world,
and it's not at all a heavy thing
(as it sometimes seems outside these walls),
but instead ripe with wholeness--
See! I am doing a new thing, says the Lord.

See! we are doing a new thing,
and yet it's older than you or I
this energy, this space,
the depth and breadth of why we show up.

As a child in the crowd, this stage held my idols,
watching them made me ache for my turn--
which came and went so quickly,
every curtain call both a buzz and a breakdown
Maybe you watched us, maybe you didn't, but somehow
you got here, somehow it turned into your turn
and you've taken it and made it, this new old thing, your own.

That's what makes me laugh and cry,
yearn and rejoice, because I know--
The children who gazed wonderingly up at you today
will be tomorrow's energy, fizz and pop
they will make this old stage new again
and again
and again
because today they watched you hold up the world

And you will return and understand
we each made our own but we're in it as one
hot bright hope and pounding hearts and quick breaths

Once you've been here, you don't forget