…And there I sat on the apron of the stage, staring into the empty house, and I knew why I was there, why it was a part of me, and why I was a part of it. I knew that in that moment, even as I scanned the rows of empty seats, that some small child was watching, enthralled, as another like me performed, that some old man was crying as he saw his happy memories brought to life once more, and I knew that this was our purpose, that this was the reason for the existence of The Stage, and I began to speak to the soul of that old house, my voice echoing faintly off the walls, never knowing who might hear…
And so we come
To this place where we become
Something we are not
Where we know that none
Can touch us, for we are
The people who create
What others now and shall ever see.
We are the passionate few—the passionate, brave few--
Who dare to quit the narrow scope
Of worldly life—who dare
To go beyond ourselves in our quests
We are The Stage, The Company, The World,
Who look out from our hollow realm
To see that sea of faces
And know that we—we The Stage—
Know more of life, of love, of war, of peace,
Of all things,
Than any of that mass of man can ever meet.
We, The Stage, do more than
Mere mortals can ever dream.
We perpetuate immortality,
Or we destroy it.
We elevate heroes,
We level villains to the rubble.
We raise empires,
Or we raze them.
We shape events as we see fit, and
We present those events, however we have seen them,
To our helpless audience, who can do nothing
But believe us.
We are The Stage, for we create its brief worlds.
The empty house is never closed,
We are The Stage, for we perpetuate its life.
So tonight, we perform…
And we know
Is the truth
As it will be forever known.
…So I looked once more, upon those empty rows, and I smiled at what was my soul, and I turned, slowly, to (exit, stage right)…
Copyright ©2000 Adam Rutledge