The applause is fading into a memoried echo
Theatre lights are extinguished one by one
And in the fading twilight of the dressing room
The actor slowly disclothes his role.
The greasepaint scraped, the costume removed
And hung on the hook behind the door. And for a timeless moment
The once actor, stands there all alone
Naked, empty, between the worlds.
“Was he Hamlet? Did Hamlet exist there on the stage? Where has Hamlet gone?”
Naked he goes to take from the hanger his other garb
The one familiar in his daily world.
Then for a moment, pauses, wondering about that other role,
This self he has learnt to play.
What happens, he wonders, if he leaves this role Hanging on its hook?
And in this moment of freedom Neither being Hamlet nor playing self
Slips free through the crack in time
Out through the fire exit, previously unnoticed Into another world and the free night air.
But who was it that left that night?
And who was left, hanging on the door?