Poetry: Talent by Carol Ann Duffy

Talent

This is the word tightrope. Now imagine
a man, inching across it in the space
between our thoughts. He holds our breath.

There is no word net.

You want him to fall, don’t you?
I guessed as much; he teeters but succeeds.
The word applause is written all over him.

Could this more aptly sum up our feelings toward people with skill or talent? Especially when famous. As if we are just waiting for them to fall, and if they happen to succeed we praise them for meeting our expectations.

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