Emily’s Poem – short story

Emily loved the idea of poetry, but could never quite master the art. She had so many ideas, but wasn’t sure if they were any good, so she’d never put herself out there. Afraid of rejection, of criticism, of never amounting to anything. Afraid because she had never been called smart, beautiful, special.

She pulled the crumpled piece of paper out of her pocket when her name was called. Her heart was racing; so fast you could see the blood pulsing violently in her neck. She took a step around the small cafe table, but caught her foot on the wrought iron chair and tumbled forward.  Something caught her. Or someone.

Emily glanced up. Their eyes met for only a second before she mumbled “sorry,” brushed off her pride, and continued towards the stage. He followed her, guiding her up the steps, careful to not make her more self conscious.  Grabbing the mic, she cleared her throat. “I’m Emily.”

Blistering heat, clear blue skies 
Sun shining over barren beauty

Without a patient eye
The exquisite views escape
And all wonder is lost

Having failed to appreciate
The delicate balance
Of survival amidst death

When she finished, she stared straight into the stage light, not wanting to make eye contact with anyone.  That’s when she realized for the first time that this poem wasn’t about the desert.  It was about her.

Emily was the desert.

“You were beautiful today,” he said, offering a hand to help her off the stage.


Author’s note:  I know, I’m a hopeless romantic!

Desert – The Daily Prompt



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