No one here knows my real name. I move among them like a phantom, speaking only through him. He is up there yet again, waving his absurd gyan mudra, conducting his rabid tribe, in another song of sorrow. The many camera lenses are drawn like moths to his strange, orange glow. His words, a few to them mine, hang above them, a dark cloud of anger, retribution, and unrepentant preening. The usual party talking points are, by decree, to be avoided. He will not be contained. He is larger than life, breathing fire, seething bluster, bellicose bombast. He is a wrecking ball, handing out torches. I anticipated this would end badly. But I had gifts for hyperbole and the theater of the absurd that had yet to be fully leveraged. Assignments were scarce, and for a middling scribe like me. Months of regular work is nothing to be scoffed at. What the hell do I have to lose? We connected instantly, I made sure of that. He saw in me himself. I can afford no apologies. Offstage he wallows in zeitgeist banter, mining bombs he can ignite whenever the spirit hits him. I don’t so much write his speeches as seed them. He loves the sound of the rallies’ white roar. Watching his people take him in is my favorite part. He says all the things they’re thinking, but were once too polite to say. Those days are over, folks, the gloves are off for good. Near the front of the dais, perched on her father’s shoulders Is a girl, star-struck and smiling, a little trumpette. Surely she knows nothing of the art of rhetoric? I slip out of the arena Into the dark concourse. He’s likely lost. Perhaps we all have. Perhaps we all are. At the far end a door is open, beckoning. They are chanting now, his name seeping through concrete: drumpf drumpf drumpf. I drift back toward the arena where I can hear him more clearly: “I am your voice! Your voice!” At least no one here knows my real name.