The Crying Game, by Mark Morris

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By Mark Morris, from an entry in a symposium on crying that was published in the Fall 2016 issue of The Threepenny Review. Morris is a dancer and choreographer. His company, the Mark Morris Dance Group, has been performing since 1980.

How to cry onstage:

1. Throw yourself to the floor. While resting forearms and forehead on floor, shudder.

2. With your mouth open in an inverted U shape, grind both fists into both eyes.

3. Cover face with both hands. Slowly shrug one shoulder repeatedly.

4. Cover ears, shake head “No!” Run offstage, accelerating as you near the wings.

5. Sniff, while wiping nose on full length of forearm. Sleeves preferred.

6. Bury head against wall and pound fist weakly.

7. Gaze coldly into middle distance with right index finger against left cheek. Pointing up, flick imaginary tear away in small, sharp outward motion (like a little windshield wiper). Think, “Never again.”

How to stop crying:

1. Look in the mirror.

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