Poem: The Provincetown Theatre


The Provincetown Theatre

Old stones mark the place the theater once stood.

You can tell, once, it was a special place
and you imagine stages, almost vaudevillian,
A macabre mix of Shakespeare and burlesque,
lurid lights coloring washing each character,
more caricature than human.

And these few stones are all that remain.
at least of the original.

There is, I am sure, a newer version,
clean and sharp, far more respectable,
a product less of my imagination than reality.
A place you can take your children,
a noble effort of aspiration to be something more.
Safe on Saturday night.

Some of us though, grow uneasy with safe.
It is the place we stagnate and die like flotsam on the beach.
We live, at times in our imaginations,
at times in the moment,
on the edge of something deadly and vibrant
feeling more alive on the precipice, in the dark corners,
willing to take the risk of failure,
of being reduced to cryptic ruins on the beach
than being stone cold dead,
even while we breathe.

About this poem

It just came. I still haven’t wrestled out where it came from.

The picture was taken in Provincetown, MA, at the end of Cape Cod. I know absolutely nothing about the real story of the theater. I prefer my own image than what I am sure, is a more prosaic reality.


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