The Bird Cage Theatre
Historic doors, propped open.
An invitation to walk the dusty boards
Once graced by boots and fancy slippers.
Worn steps lead to private boxes
Where soiled doves once entertained.
Now, only mannequins and specters watch
The on-going show of visitors below.
Weathered faces peer from antiquated frames.
And curiosities hide within glass cases
That reflect past splendors in eerie distortion.
Camera flashes illumine the gallery
And hint at bright lights that once grace the stage.
But they can’t capture the unearthly feel
And powdery gloom of the crumbling hall.
Shadowy figures sway among the draperies
That fall in solemn remembrance,
Of actors caught in love’s revenge.
Spirits move and sing with dusty voices.
Piano keys ring and glasses clink
For those who take the time
To stop and listen.
Rita Ackerman, 2008.