we were above the stage in a corridor
I was due on next to fool my way
through a singing part   I can’t remember
if he worked there     or what his role could have been

I know I wanted him to help me into
the trousers    liked the way his hands smoothed
the leather    maybe the end of the run
made him brave    lets take a look at what you’ve got

he    I don’t want to say asked    requested?
the way an audience can request an encore
pulling it out of you from that deep part
beneath the ribs that doesn’t want to disappoint

when I was sixteen I wanted so much
to please    would steal any scene for laughs
and so I did    pulled down the yfronts my mum
had bought for me    and let it hang like a rope

is that all you’ve got he said    and didn’t ask
for more    and it hung there in the backstage cold
like something already dead    and I bowed
and pulled up    and stepped out    and performed