he smiles at me
those perfect ivories 
i try to tickle but
tangle frozen fingers
in careless hair 
anxieties 
coarse with giggling 
notes that mock me 
in dotted dark eyes
with each page 
turn 
sheets of ice 
to sweat 
trickl 
         i
         n
         g 
       into 
       pits 
of an inferno 
under stage lights 
red hot
on my neck. 
rehearsing triad scales 
turn to slithering reptiles 
that spiral into depths 
coiling around 
the songs i knew
in my prison
i mean practice room
whispers to 
withdraw 
run away 
give up
to quit 
when 
a trance of strings 
tune 
me out 
of my nauseous state  
to focus
my wild mind 
on the spotlight 
of the magic wand 
that lifts 
me out. 

By: Katy Claire Funke

The webs we spin and get caught up in can truly hinder us from our passions and our jobs, but we have to let the love of our art overcome. I’ve been a performer since I was four years old and have always suffered with some degree of anxiety. Even after being on a stage hundreds of times. Most days I can harness that nervous energy and turn it into a more exhilarating and authentic performance for myself and the audience. Other days, it gets in the way. Nevertheless, I need to perform because I can’t do life without it (I’ve tried and been miserable), so I take it one performance at a time.

Photo by Jim Arnot on Unsplash

5 thoughts on “performance anxiety

  1. Katy, I commented previously on a post of yours but I got an error message so I was never sure if it went through or not. I just wanted to say how much I like the way you write, itโ€™s very lyrical, it reads like music. You are clearly very talented.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Rachel, thank you so much! That means a lot to me coming from you! I am pretty new to poetry and am greatly enjoying learning from talented writers like yourself! I am in awe of your work! I am trying to write music, so I am very glad that your hear a lyrical flow to my poems ๐Ÿ™‚ Again, so thrilled to have found your blog and look forward to continued reading and sharing!

      Liked by 1 person

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