Don't be fooled by me.
Don't be fooled by the face I wear.
For I wear a mask, a thousand masks, masks that I'm afraid to take off, and
none of them is me.
Pretending is an art that's second nature to me, but don't be fooled.
For God's sake don't be fooled.
I give you the impression that I'm secure,
that confidence is my name and coolness is my game,
and that I need no one.
But don't believe me.
My surface may seem smooth but my surface is my mask,
ever-varying and ever-concealing.
Beneath lies no complacence.
Beneath lies confusion and fear and aloneness.
But I hide this. I don't want anybody to know it.
I panic at the though of my
weakness and fear 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.
My only hope, and I know it.
That is, if it's followed by acceptance,
if it's followed by love.
It's the only thing that can liberate me from myself,
from my own self-built prison walls,
from the barriers I so painstakingly erect.
It's the only thing that will assure me
of what I can't assure myself,
that I'm really worth something.
I don't like to hide.
I don't like to play superficial phony games.
I want to stop playing them.
I want to be genuine and spontaneous and me,
but you've got to help me.
You've got to hold out your hand
even when that's the last thing I seem to want.
Only you can wipe away from my eyes
the bland stare of the breathing dead.
Only you can call me into aliveness.
Each time you're kind and
gentle and encouraging,
each time you try to understand because you really care,
my heart begins to grow wings, very small wings,
With your power to touch me into feeling
you can breathe life into me
I want you to know that.
Who am I, you may wonder.
I am someone you know very well.
For I am every man you meet,
and I am every woman you meet.