Laughter for a living

Open mouths and wide smiles,

There’s a tooth missing

Here.

There’s a cavity

There.

Clenched jaws say more than bared ones,

Teeth grind with effort to shut.


Laughter,

Almost perverse,

So easy at another’s misery,

At a fool’s folly,

At an unfortunate accident,

At painful memories.


Have you ever seen the chorus of laughter?

Eyes slyly moving to confirm another’s mirth,

Or staring at me, in vexatious anticipation;

while I make them laugh.

Shining with pleasure,

Screaming -

“It’s not just me, it’s you!

You’re a bungling moron.”

Hahaha.


Convulsions of joy,

Shrieks of manic correlation,

And applause, louder than the deafening laughs,

Loud enough for sound to die it’s unnatural living death.


And there are those with impassive faces,

The eternal jury to the drama of another’s life.

Tentative smiles and haughty derision,

For mirth, like respect,

Has to be manipulated, coerced,

From those too stingy to give to it.


Today they laugh,

Applaud and scream praises.

Come tomorrow,

They may close their infinite mouths,

Into a thin line.

To open them later in discontented contempt.


Is my self worth tied to visions of decaying teeth?

The days I can count the missing teeth,

My job is well done.

On others,

I’m as funny as the fly drowning in the soup:

Mildly interesting to watch,

Easy to forget,

And just as small.


Laughter for a living!

They laugh when I speak.

They SHOULD laugh when I speak.

For till the laughter is at me,

With me,

I win.

Yet, the day the laughter dies,

I won’t have to search for cavities,

To soothe my soul.


The seated view of a stand up comic. So the other day, I was having an intriguing conversation with a very interesting friend and as usual - the conversation turned to a topic as irregular as us: Stand up comedy. Wanting to go beyond ourselves and try to understand where the artists came from. Have you ever wondered what a stand up comic feels like, what they see? For these performers, what they see and hear is a real time measurable score of their skills. Oh, how must their world be then!

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