The Daily Masquerade


The Daily Masquerade

Each morning, when I wake up to
The sparrows’ serenade
I knit the stark of light and dark
For the masquerade

Some day as I walk out the door
I’m lit with painted smiles
Another, with my lashes curled
Its all coy wiles and guiles.

One day I will attempt to be
Cheery despite the cold,
Pretend to be a child for you
When really, wrinkled, old..

Or happiness, for someone’s sake
Rarely, even my own,
But soon enough that mask will slip
The minute I’m alone.

A time I will mellowness yield
To peace, unchecked, uncaught
And let my face reckless emerge
In joy, unmarked, unfraught..

But when storms stir up within
No masks can fully hide
The darkness simmers, glimmers, and
my eyes show what’s inside

Between the real, the ethereal,
The many faces played
Twirled with everyone I know
In this masquerade

I struggle to erase the lie
All said and done we’ve strayed
And life has ceased to be, but
A daily masquerade..


Anyone who’s seen Jim Carrey’s The Mask will remember , “we all wear masks every day, metaphorically speaking”. A surprisingly subtle epiphany, isn’t it? Especially coming from so loud a movie. How come I only noticed it the fifteenth or twentieth time it came on tv?

We all wear masks on a daily basis. A different face for some people, a different tone of voice for some, a different attitude towards yet some more. And no, it’s not hypocrisy or being double faced. God, those are altogether separate things. Our masks, yours and mine, are part of of the survival strategy on a daily basis.

We’re different people at home and at work. With acquaintances and friends. Heck, sometimes we’re different people alone and in company. To think of it, we’re such an almost unnecessarily complicated species!
I mean, this is a mock up of a daily schedule. Get up in the morning as Person one (the base line, since this is usually the real us). Get dressed and leave for work, slipping into Person number two, the you in the crowd.

Reach school/college/work, flip over to Person number three, the professional, detached and clinical you. Work your way through the day. Make it to the evening slot where you enter Person four, with friends, or back to Person one, with family. Cycle complete, sleep and repeat.

Okay so maybe I’m being a little extra critical and cynical today. I’m just noticing though, that we shift through so many different personas during the day. Some of us revel in them, others hide behind them. Batman would say that it’s not who you are, but what you do that defines you. I beg to differ. I think it’s not what you do, but what you do regardless of time, place, or person that defines you. Sure you have to work behind different masks, clinical one moment and compassionate the other, but the thread of connectivity, of you behind both of them, will define you, make you stand out as hey, that’s the guy!

Our behavior and our conduct is just as intricately webbed as our interactions. Layer by layer, we build and shed a part of our personality in different places, different times. What we need to realize is the risk of quickly becoming jaded. Character on, character off. Letting our routine define our role instead of us defining our role in that routine. That’s the part of the masquerade we control. In essence, we are who we want to be, despite what we have to be. Just need to step in and grab the reins on that.

So what are you waiting for? Are you going to stand in the sidelines when the lead character in your play is you? Will you hide behind a mask and shuffle through apathy every day? Or will you use that inertia to strengthen you, and shine through in every role you play?

Because you can. You can let your unceasing glow illuminate every facet of your day, of who you come in contact with. And you can bask in that radiance, a warmth like no other.

Its your mask, and it’s your masquerade.

Love and light,

Cookie ❤

Show and tell –

36 thoughts on “The Daily Masquerade

  1. purple says:

    I am not sure which I liked better, the awesome poem or the awesome commentary after it. Can I just say I loved BOTH? This is an almost infinite subject, full of so many paths, truths, and opinions. Thanks for sharing just a glimpse into yours. 🙂


    • Thank you Purple! True, there’s a veritable maze of roads to pursue when it comes to this topic, and I’d like to think I’m going down the one less traveled by. (Love that poem, can quote it all day lol).

      Glad you liked it! Woot woot! 🙂


  2. […] The Daily Masquerade | calliopes lyre […]


  3. Beautifully constructed, strong message, and the line ‘the darkness simmers, glimmers’ is truly haunting. Bravo!! 🙂 Plus, I agree entirely on your premise about masks we all wear every day. 🙂


  4. […] The Daily Masquerade | calliopes lyre […]


  5. Madsies says:

    Love this! 🙂 Great work Cookie!


  6. PapaBear says:

    As you said, Cookie, we all wear masks appropriate to the moment, the environment we’re in at the time. It’s an unavoidably human frailty that we accept as part of “the process”. You covered this so very well that there’s nothing left to say except…, Well Done !!!


  7. Bill Shultz says:

    I had a comment almost finished and it went poof….so I’ll start again…. This poem really got to me…and fits me so well. I spent the better part of my life being someone else. I don’t think I even knew who I was…so I took on may personalities, whatever was necessary to meet the current situation. I had to please today’s peer group. For a long time I played the roll of a bad ass give no quarter soldier. Had I not I’d probably be dead. I don’t think I began to learn who I really was till long after those days were past. I’m not sure when I climbed out of my shell…but it did happen. I would not love nor would I allow anyone to love me. There are reasons…You know some of them Cookie…but that was my life.

    Now I just am who I am, I don’t try to be anybody nor do I try to impress anyone. Is someone doesn’t like me, they can go and like someone else. I get excited at beautiful things, I cry and don’t care who knows it…I feel sad and glad…I’m just me…Yes, I want to be liked, but not at the expense of changing who I am…and who am I? I’ve grown from a man who hated himself and all he represented into someone I kind of like. I don’t have to nor do I want to impress anyone. In other words “what you see is what you get.” I love people and I love life, but at the same time I do not fear death. I just am. And all my masks are hidden away in the attic….Hope I never see them again…

    Now who was that guy who just wrote this novella?

    Dynamite poetry Cookie, loved it to pieces… You grow with every word you write. I love what you do with words. You are special…


    • I think I’ll disagree with you on that, Bill. It’s you who is special. Not only does it take almost impossible strength and courage to deal with the situations you’ve been in, but to top it off, a soldier as well. I have tremendous respect and affection for the armed forces. I’ve never had any family members in the army ever, but a very good friend of mine, almost an elder brother, is a vet. And when I think of him out in the open, facing gunfire and being shot at, my mind’s almost ready for shut down.

      Don’t get me wrong, I’m not one of your pansies who faint at the site of blood. I’m very inured to the blood and gore aspect of things. But the very idea of you boys and what you do, it’s staggering. And the reasons, your reasons… I mean.. You go out there and fight for your country, fight for all of us. You boys live patriotism every day more than anyone can talk about it for.
      Added to that, I know what force of will it mustve taken you to get to there as well.. And you can’t disagree with me there. You’re a very special person. =)

      See? Told you I never shut up! =P and I have to confess, as much as I talk nonstop, there are days when the words I say out loud are a mask as well. A lot of days. That’s one good thing about my Facebook and this blog, that I can be barefacedly honest and say what I’m thinking, instead of what I’m required to say. And what I will say is, I’m glad you don’t wear any masks anymore. It takes tremendous resolve not to hide within oneself, and I’m happy that you don’t, and hopefully never ever will need to! =)

      Cookie ❤


      • Sight* ye gads, what a mire of mistakes autocorrect leads me into!


      • Bill Shultz says:

        I had to read this again…but because I had to read this again…I don’t need any other reason…just because you are also a very special person. 🙂

        Goodnight Mrs. Calabash, where ever you are….and thank you Jimmy….for all the laughs of my youth.

        And if I don’t make sense, well, that’s okay too…


      • Not everything needs to make sense, or have a reason, or have an answer. Somethings just are, and that’s perfectly fine. =)

        What’s also perfectly fine is you being sweet enough to come by and read again. Thank you!! =)


  8. […] The Daily Masquerade | calliopes lyre […]


  9. […] The Daily Masquerade | calliopes lyre […]


  10. tester says:


    Thanks for composing this. I truly feel as though I understand so much more about this than I did in the past. Your blog truly brought some things to light that I never ever would have thought about in the past reviewing it. You ought to continue this,…


  11. Horus says:

    …and they say its just the Geminis who have dual personalities !

    I guess its human adaptation to survive in the world that is full of lies !


    • Haha yes. I never really bought that, truth be told. I suppose the zodiacs might influence some of the more sentient and aware people, but for the most part we just run around the place, don’t we? In chicken with its head off style.

      Also, your blog name is magical! I’m hurrying over as we speak!


  12. andy1076 says:

    Beautiful written, Indeed we all wear masks of sorts one way or another. The only question is, who do we reveal what’s behind the mask to right?


  13. […] The Daily Masquerade | calliopes lyre […]


  14. Correct, we all wear masks dependent on the person or situation of the moment. Hopefully, one can remove those masks when facing ourselves in the mirror!


  15. mmtread says:

    The topic (and the one before it, oddly enough) put me in mind of TS Eliot. “There will be time, there will be time
    To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet”

    And indeed there will be time
    For the yellow smoke that slides along the street,
    Rubbing its back upon the window-panes;
    There will be time, there will be time
    To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet;
    There will be time to murder and create,
    And time for all the works and days of hands
    That lift and drop a question on your plate;
    Time for you and time for me,
    And time yet for a hundred indecisions
    And for a hundred visions and revisions
    Before the taking of a toast and tea.

    Nicely done!


    • Thank you so much, Mmtread! Even if vaguely reminded you of TS Eliot, that is a tremendous compliment! Thanks ever so much! =D

      Funnily enough another person I know told me the same thing. Personally, my poem feels merely like a little rant compared to his poem (obviously lol). =P In any case, I’m happy you liked it. Thank you for commenting! =)


  16. Sand says:

    This is a topic I’ve considered and discussed many times. It boils down to trust, who you give it to and how much you give them. And that comes in many degrees. The person who cuts your hair isn’t granted the same amount of trust you give a coworker who isn’t granted the same amount as a friend who gets less than a sister who gets maybe too much. And all those pale next to how much a spouse gets because for them we tend to completely bare our souls. And if we’re lucky they’ll love us in spite of and perhaps even BECAUSE of who we are underneath all that grease paint.

    Over time we learn who will stab us, who will steal from us, who will enjoy us and who will support us when things get rough. It takes time and experience (and getting stabbed, robbed and shored up) to know how much to give and to whom. And often those lessons are painful and costly. So the masks have different visages and different thicknesses. They serve their purposes and as long as we don’t lose who we are when the last one comes off before sleep, there’s nothing wrong with wearing them. You simply cannot trust everyone to the same degree. It would be incredibly foolish.

    It’s an excellent and well-thought-out poem with a sound philosophy behind it. You do wonderful work and are a pleasure to read both in verse and in prose.


    • Thank you so, so much Sand! I’m really happy you liked it! =) you have right down exact, you know. Wearing masks isn’t a bad thing, just the where an when and why, that’s more important than the fact that we wear them.. Thanks so much for commenting! Much love to you, dear Sand! ❤


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