The famous man stood at the podium and began with winsome smile and clever lines

Over and over everyone clapped, their faces slightly turned upward waiting for the genius’ words to seep into their skin.  From afar the classroom resembled a nest and they were little birds waiting for their mother to give them food.

He slathered it on like mayo on a tomato sandwich.  Intentional.   They could not refuse rich and thick and he watched them intellectually drool, and held them captive like a magician at a children’s birthday party.

Long after the lecture was over, he answered question after question, throwing  wood on already raging fires.

Late into the night, the classroom lights were finally turned off.  The last click of heels could be heard echoing in the hallway…He drove home. He climbed the stairs and made his way to bed.  Alone. All alone. As his head was cradled in softness, his eyes bore holes in the blank white of the ceiling.  His mind repeated his clever answers over and over…  If only he could believe them.