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The Circus – 3

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The acrobats and the trapeze people eye each other up.
It never abates, their competitiveness.
The acrobats wonder how complex it is to do gymastics on a swing.
The trapeze people wonder why there’s a fuss over some jumping around on the ground.
With training they could do each other’s jobs. Neither are inclined.
The acrobats build pyramids, temples with their bodies.
They fly around the big ring, battling gravity.
They do a graceful job of it.
Acrobats are supple, lithe. They can fold themselves in half.
They don’t have margin for error. Too much rides on each grip.
They don’t suffer from pressure for a perfect performance.
Usually, theirs’ is.
If there is a miscalculation, a moment of uncertainty, it shows.
That showing does not earn the acrobats a wage-cut.
Why does it earn the wild animals a slap?

It is time the ringmaster laid down his whip, think the tigers.
Their great minds think alike.
Why he holds so desperately to his voice of reason is not hard to see.
He is not in charge of anything without it.
The big cats are tired of it all. The cages, the show, the people.
They hold a referendum. Kill the ringmaster.
Their views are extremist, built up of fresh resentment.
The tigers have every right to be resentful.
They haven’t bred in centuries.
Something about circus policy.
Not that a tiger would want a cub under circus conditions.
The tiger does not want a circus under circus conditions.
The elephants voted last time to kill a person from the audience.
They were certain that method of communication would work.
They heard of their cousins trying that in India. It worked.
They got the bullet.

The acrobats believe there is a way to teach a flying clown to land
– something about a somersault, a roll –
for when the net set to catch his fall is removed.
There is talk about an acrobat doing the act dressed as a clown.
The talk is ignored.
What about the Two-Headed Polio Twins, the hairy Ape Lady?
The fun really begins when the Dwarves come out, all cartwheels.
Their dimensions are an optical illusion for normal eyes.
I suppose some might say that the likes of Dwarves and Ape Ladies
are not fair game for a show-and-tell?
That the Two-Headed Polio Twins have feelings, too?
The Twins can articulate their feelings.
That is the only difference between them and the tigers.
I suspect there are many sane freaks on this planet
who would gladly take money to be stared at by curious people.
Just pay them well.
Capitalism is an industry, after all.
And that trap, celebrity, appears to be everything.
But the capitalists these days do not quibble.
They want what they want.
Money is no object.

 

 

 

 

 

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The Circus: Part Two – Blog No. 77

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If you think the acrobats have time to consider their state of mind before they fly,
you are underestimating the freedom they find in flight.
They do not need to consider such things. They understand trust.
If you think like an acrobat you will find that your head stays silent, awed, whilst you work.
It knows its place.
If you feel like an acrobat, that is your business. Your body – your trained senses – are your business.
Trust the bearings your body gives you.
Trust your senses to tell you one side of the story.
Let your perception tell you a second.
Trust instinct – the Knowing – to show you a third.
That way, your performance will be flawless.
Acrobats are made for flawless performances.

The tiger is sick of sitting in his own piss and stink. That is no way to treat majesty.
And when does the stupid act he does buy him back the wild?
It had better be soon. He is tired of sitting in a small cage measuring man’s promise.
He is bored of wowing ignorant children
for the sake of their careless parents.
The flaming-hoop story is old.  Tired.  It passes the time.
The tiger is so bored it could die.
It accepts – and hates – in equal measure.
Who dares put the grizzly bear in a ruffled pink skirt on a tricycle, and then laugh, invite laughter?
Who does that for his living? The tiger smiles.
The same man who chases the elephants around in little hats. The tiger chuckles.
It is not wise to push the elephants.

The time is coming to shoot the clown out of the cannon.
He has a safety net. No one is scared.
Perhaps it would be funnier another way.
The clowns fight behind the scenes. They suffer petty jealousies and hangovers, from before.
The clowns hold grudges. They play favourites; poker.
None of them are good losers.
It is time for the clowns to get new clothes.
Their uniforms are worn.
The budget was cut last year. Again.
Clowns’ outfits are not a priority in the new one.
They grumble at the pecking order.
No one cares about the clowns.
They are right.
Their act would not be missed, were it axed.
Think about it.
They are a distraction to the main event, a time-filler.
Hardly an act.

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