Behind this Curtain

Location

Behind this curtain I stand

Holding my hands out

Palms up

Asking silently for help

But the words won’t escape my lips

And the thought of asking slips my mind

As the curtain rises.

Behind the mask

I wear upon my face like armor

My face is wavering

Holding onto the words I wish

So desperately to say

A deep breath pushes the thoughts away

And instead

Love and laughter pour out of my heart

And my hands open to the sky

In wordless praise

Not wondering why there is suffering and pain

I share only what is safe

The little things

My favorite colors

But not my dreams

Not the reality of what I want to be

And when the curtain falls

And the mask slips from my face

I am back in a place

Of utter relaxation

When the sensations of the world

Are left behind and for a time

I am me

Again

But when I rise early tomorrow

I put a new mask on

To cover the sorrow

Buried deep within myself

I know it’s not healthy to hold it in

But I fear so much that I will be left alone

That I carry on the struggle inside

But it is a losing battle

The strength to lift the mask to my face is

Dwindling

The curtains have turned to

Moth-balls and kindling

And I am left naked

Baring my soul for the world to see

Hiding the shame of my disability

No more

I begin to speak

And the words come out softly

Like a rose petal falling to the floor

On a wedding day

But soon my voice fills the room

And people are finally listening

To the pain and the hurt

And lifting me up

With the kindest of words

Behind the curtain I could be me

And now my soul

Is finally free.

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