Performance Anxiety

Written by: James Ph. Kotsybar

The Bard questioned whether to be or not,
and Keats gave us all that we need to know,
but do you think either would be called hot
were they to read at a poetry show?

What would Wordsworth ‘s words be worth,
performed at poetry slams, would he find
at any popular event on Earth
the external world fitted to his mind?

If Emily overcame her stage-fright,
her passions might give her audience pause,
but isn’t  it just as likely she might 
bomb in silence as be drowned in applause?

Sometimes it seems the old saying’s absurd
that poetry’s always meant to be heard.