Behind the Facade

Don't be fooled by me
Don't be fooled by the face I wear
for I wear a thousand masks,
masks that I'm afraid to take off,
and none of them are me.
Pretending is an art that's second nature with me
but don't be fooled.
For God's sake, don't be fooled.
I give the impression that I'm secure,
that all is sunny and unruffled with me...
within as well as without...
that confidence is my name,
and coolness is my game.
That the water's calm and I'm in command,
and that I need no one...
but don't believe me...Please.

My surface may seem smooth
but my surface is my mask.
Beneath this lies no complacence,
beneath dwells the real me in confusion,
in fear and aloneness.
But I hide this. I don't want anybody to know it.
I panic at the thought of my weakness,
and fear of being exposed.
That's why I frantically create a mask to hide behind...
a nonchalant, sophisticated facade...
to help me pretend,
to shield me from the glance that knows.

But such a glance is precisely my salvation,
and I know it.
That is - if it is followed by acceptance...
if it is followed by love.
It's the only thing that will assure me
of what I can't assure myself...
that I am worth something.
But I don't tell you this. I don't dare.
I'm afraid to.
I'm afraid your glance will not be followed by
acceptance and love.
I'm afraid you'll think less of me...
that you'll laugh at me and
your laugh would kill me.

I'm afraid that deep down I'm nothing—
that I'm no good,
and that you will see this and reject me,
So I play my game--my desperate game
with a facade of assurance without,
and a trembling child within.
And so begins the parade of masks,
and my life becomes a front.


Unknown Author

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