Oftentimes we let our fear of a possible outcomes hinder us from attempting anything at all. My poem is about a student’s fear of participation, stemming from self-doubt and a paralyzing fixation on the worst case scenario. As a fellow introvert, this poem represents some of my fears about speaking in front of others, irrational as they may seem.
My hand peeks tentatively past rows of heads. Students turn and stare; anticipation (or boredom, I can’t tell) emanates from their eyes.
I’m sure I know. The silence grows, the students wait. My hand sinks. I might know.
I don’t know.
Because what if
What if they laugh
What if it’s another mistake
Among my infinite blunders
What if the sky falls
Pulled down by broken expectations
What if the world shines her unforgiving light
On my failure
To answer a simple question
“You have an answer?”
“I was just stretching.”