Did I Sound OK?

Fifty people at the meeting—
I want to say something,
but is it relevant,
and is it pertinent?
And, is this the time?
Or should I wait?
Perhaps it is dumb.
Or has it been said?
I wish it were not so important
for me to sound clever
and original
whenever I talk,
wanting every time
to make an important contribution
to the goings-on.
I hate wanting others
to respect me.
I hate caring so much
that I should be liked.
Why should it matter?
But it does,
damn it, it does!
So with pounding heart
I say it—

Was it OK?
Tell me—how did I sound?

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