Nerves electricity
Crackling under my skin
Looking out into the darkness
The people before me, their voices
Still humming in my ear
Fluid movement between words and body
And I am a brick wall of fear
Feet, a part of the floor
As I no longer feel my legs
Careful step up and I rest hands
Upon podium, gripping for stability
And the electricity under my skin
Snaps and dances, and the storm
Growling deep inside holds me hostage
I look out into the darkness
With a deep breath, I hold on
I begin my speech
Listening as the words crash against the shadows
My body wants to retreat, but I grip
Holding on to the podium
As each word roars and takes flight
Seven minutes or ten
The final word charging from my mouth
Striking out, snarling
My body snaps back and the electricity settles
I let go, retreating
From the thunder of applause


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