love-takes-off-masks-that-we-fear-we-cannot-live-without-and-know-we-cannot-live-within-18I would wear a mask
made of fur or hide
that would mold its outline to mine
until they were fused indistinguishable
you would say
why do you wear a mask?
don’t you want people to see your face?
and I would reply
no not yet
not even afterward
I wish to exist outside of definition
do not mark me with your label
I wish to be and not be
I wish to hide and be seen
in the eclipse we call
no more honest
than compartments
are capable of containing whole facsimile
or props can be used for their pretence
a make-believe globe cannot a world lend
they are hollow beasts, the mounted heads
glaring from faded walls
it seems at night they can
growl but it is merely
a trick of light
like a magician from emptiness
we all of us are conjurers of reality
deciding our avatars with fickle choice
and where lies among our pretending
one brave enough to bare
themselves to elements of judgement
without veil
without succor
they are naked before storm
approbation beating their rendered limbs
like headmaster lifts the cane and repeats
swish, swish, say after me
I am not worthy
who shall stand despite the welt
defy the master
revive our guilt
till truth be told and masks set to flame
we need not hide, we need to regain