The Mask

Wed, 02/05/2014 - 20:41 -- Emily H

There was one thing

that I couldn’t forget

about him:

his smile. 

It was a contagious disease.

Once you saw it,

your troubles melted away

and you smiled too. 

It was burned into my eyes

like a tattoo on skin.

I couldn’t believe

such a pure smile

was nothing

but a mask

until I heard two words:

he jumped.

It wasn’t an accident. 

He jumped

from the third floor. 

His body was shattered

on the blood stained pavement. 

Not a word could escape his mouth.

Darkness consumed his world. 

Our world.

We cried.

We prayed.

We held each.

We felt rage against

those who joked about him

and the cameras gathering at the gate

like insects to rotting meat

who had no sympathy nor respect

for him, us, or his family.

According to the doctors,

he shouldn’t have survived.

He jumped

from the third floor

onto solid concrete.


A few months later,

I saw him again.

I didn’t recognize him until

his smile burned my eyes once again.


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