The Mask

I wrote this poem as part of an activity given by my theatre teacher, Bruce Hanson, during my freshman year of high school. We were discussing the value of masks in performances & he asked us to write about what masks meant to us.  I was struggling with who I really was and who I wanted people to think I was… this is what I came up with.

Everybody wears a mask

It hides mistakes and shields the past

It prevents us from owning faults

And locks our secrets into vaults

Somehow we find the strength to smile

While feeling pain that’s violently vile

Why should people have to know

About the pain we won’t let go

A mask can hide what we feel

And make others think it’s real

We laugh, we joke, we live a lie

And late at night we only cry

The mask keeps us from being true

And covers up whatever we do

But when we have time alone

We sit wishing that the mask was gone

So our true selves we can reveal

And let go of hurts and begin to heal

But unfortunately the hardest task….

Is peeling off the mask.


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