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The girl steps onstage.
She picks up the microphone,
looking at the hundreds of people sitting
in front of her.


The music plays
softly in the background.
The young girl opens her mouth,
her heart.


She sends a message,
her words drifting sweetly through the auditorium,
to the hundreds of people sitting
in front of her.


The girl steps into school.
She looks around at the hundreds of people walking
in front of her.

She runs a hand
through her
dark, inky hair,
smoothing it out.


She remembers
checking her outfit,
her hair,
her smile.


Scared,
that she wasn’t good
enough,
pretty
enough
for the hundreds of people walking in front of her.


The girls steps into her room.
She is alone.
She doesn’t have to pretend
for the hundreds of people who were
in front of her.


The girl steps into her kitchen.
Her mother looks at her disapprovingly.
The young girl sighs,
aware of her mistakes.
The hundreds of expectations her mother has for her
are too much.
Is she a disappointment?


The girls stands in
the shadows of
her older sister.


Her beautiful,
talented,
older sister.


The girl tries
to step out of
the shadows,
but everytime,
she gets
engulfed again.


The girl steps outside,
gazing at the hundreds of stars spread
out in front of her.


She closes her eyes,
wishing for the hundredth time,
hoping
that this time,
her wish will come true.


The girl steps into school again.
She looks around at the hundreds of people walking
in front of her.


She stands with her hundreds of friends,
holding on tightly.
She is not ready to let go.
She will never be ready to let go.


The girl walks with her crush.
She gazes up at him
the way she gazes up at
the hundreds of stars.


She opens her journal
and flips to an empty page.
Her pencil bursts on the paper,
as she writes about
the hundreds of people,
hundreds of stars,
hundreds of friends,
one love.


The girls smiles for the hundredth time.
She knows the smile is fake,
but nobody else does.
She tries to stay happy,
because her friends happiness
is more important
than hers.


The girl is like a
balloon.
Once somebody lets go
of the string,
she drifts
farther and farther
until she is
gone.


She needs her hundreds of friends
to hold tightly to
her string,
so she doesn’t
float away.


The girls steps outside of the schools.
She waits
for her mother to come,
gripping a test
with 90% written
in red ink.


She smiles excitedly,
hoping her mother will be proud.
One of her hundreds of expectation.


The girl reaches home
and sits in her room,
alone again.
She wishes for her hundreds of friends
that she isn’t ready to let go of.


The girl decides to do what she does best.
She pulls out a pencil
and opens her journal to a fresh page,
and begins to write:


“The girl steps onstage.
She picks up the microphone,
looking at the hundreds of people sitting
in front of her.”




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