Chameleon Mask

I don’t know who I am.    

Behind the scenes,  

a chameleon in costume.

Dresses of armor and eyeliner sharp like a knife,                                            

defend me from tender hands.                                                                                                        

Thorns strangle the rose.                                                                                                                          

Sweet smell turns sour.                                                                                                                             

I would rather cut the flower down,                                                                                                     

Sickly brown and wrinkled in the pages of a tome.


Can I call a rose by another name?                                                                                                         

Paint the petals with Amazonian clay.                                                                                                           

A rose is not a carnation,                                                                                                                                

nor is it simple baby’s breath.                                                                                                                     

Call me gorse.                                                                                                                                              

Despair is my milieu.


I hide behind my walls.                                                                                                                     

Flamboyant neon paints the bricks.                                                                                                              

Too much noise, too much color;                                                                                                                  

It only serves as a distraction from points of weakness.


The citadel within crumbles;                                                                                                                       

the stoic stones litter the ground,                                                                                                                

yet there is elegance in the destruction.                                                                                                  

The cobwebs intricately decorate the darkened corners.


I am not a rose, nor gorse.                                                                                                                              

I am not thorn.                                                                                                                                                     

I am not gaudy décor.                                                                                                                                     

I am not the impenetrable walls.


Am I strong as the winds of a hurricane?                                                                                                    

Am I as warm as a cup of tea?                                                                                                                      

Am I as pretentious as they proclaim?                                                                                                          

Am I as solemn as the raven, whose color matches the blackness of the night sky?                           

Am I just a contradiction?


I do not know who I am.                                                                                                                                  

I am trying to know. 

This poem is about: 


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