They brought her in to sit in the audience. They brought her in to listen. They brought

her in to look pretty and keep her mouth shut. They brought her in to laugh at the right

times. They brought her in to pour the wine and eat the crumbs. Do they want her

opinion? Do they want to hear her story? Heavens no, they want her to keep her

opinions and her stories to herself. Or, better yet, not to have any. How is it that they

found her in the first place? She isn’t listed anywhere. She hasn’t joined an agency or

put herself on a website, but somehow they found her. They always find her. But why

did she say yes, and why did she accept the part? She doesn’t know how to act, never

did. She’s always been too real, too hard to take, a pain in the neck/ass/you-name-it. A

headache. When she opens her mouth, something harsh comes out, as if she can’t keep

the bile down, as if she’s been poisoned and she’s trying to choke the poison back up,

trying to save her very life. And maybe she has. Been poisoned, that is, little by little,

sitting in the audience for so long, nodding appreciatively at the monologues, the comic

routines, the confessions, looking pretty night after night, trying to keep her mouth shut

while laughing at the right times. You’ve got to hand it to her, she’s a good audience.

Quite the little listener, as they say. But how can she keep pouring the wine without

spilling, and how long can she survive on crumbs?