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  • Writer's pictureJo Sutherst

Sustainable Prospects – Shoot Mod4#26 – Behind the Mask – My Mask #3

“Mask Forever Worn

This gilded mask that I wear each day, can only be seen through by those who take their time to inspect it, every crack, every scratch, only then will you understand what lies beneath this mask forever worn, used to show that I’m not so different from you, I wear it each day so I can function, why does it seem so heavy?”

– Michael Tobin (Hello Poetry, 2017)

Applying a gold collagen paper face mask to my face was an interesting experience. I felt very glamorous in it.

Beneath the mask, you can still see my eyes. I could see out but my sight was slightly limited by the mask. This is how wearing my daily mask feels. Dependent on the situation, I deceive myself every time I wear my mask. I do not allow myself to see everything around me; I limit what I can see. If I do not allow myself to see everything; my mask prevents it. If I can’t see something, then I don’t have to deal with it. This makes it easier to cope with life.

The small space for my mouth means that my voice is limited. I cannot speak clearly and you cannot hear me properly. I feel like this sometimes when I speak to others. My daily mask projects confidence and happiness, but you do not hear me suffer and cry. You cannot hear my true message, my mask muffles it.

You can see some emotion when I am wearing this mask, but it looks forced and false and you only see what the mask allows you to see. The true strength and depth of my emotions are not revealed. You look at my face and think you know me and what I am thinking. But do you really you know who I am? Do you know how I feel?

Behind the mask

 We all wear different masks.

The mask of a smile when we’re crying inside.

The mask that we have everything under control when truly our life is out of control.

The mask of being sober when we’re drunk.

The mask of intelligence when the truth is we dropped out of college.

The mask of being wealthy when there is a drawer full of credit card statements waiting to be paid.

The mask of being so busy and popular when in fact we sit alone at night.

Lose the masks. Be vulnerable. Be authentic. Be you.”

– Tanya Kainz (Hello Poetry, 2017)

I still have a way to go with this. I am working on removing my mask. The connection between what I am portraying and what I am feeling needs to be resolved. I need to feel ok about others seeing the emotions that hold my mask to my face. I need to be able to acknowledge my demons and deal with them. This will take time, bear with me.


Hello Poetry. (2017). Mask poems on Hello Poetry. [online] Available at: [Accessed 12 Nov. 2017].

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