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Unmask Your Unreal Self
by Apoorva B. Raj

Masking my days with a smile
Asking myself how long to bear all this
Searching in the mirror
Life spent pleasing others, playing roles, accepting tasks,
challenging fate, and repenting for not daring to be me
Suffocating…
My soul says,
“Unmask your grotesque face
Lift your unimaginable side
Burnish that unpleasant smile
Laugh at your pretentious acts, accept that you are not what others see.
You are the hidden storm and burning fire before that looking glass!”

Photo by PDPics, used by permission

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: The poem tries to give voice to the suppressed voice of many  women who from birth live under under customs and traditions. Here the mask is covering the woman’s real personality. The poem indicates that the action of unmasking the masked face is like revealing the hidden self. For this, women have to act consciously. Thus it stresses the necessity for women’s empowerment all over the world.

Raj 1 copy

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Dr. Apoorva B. Raj is assistant professor, Department of English, Govt First Grade College, Mudigere, Chikamagaluru, Karnataka, India. Her poems and articles have been published in international and national journals. She loves writing poetry, and thinks poetry is the index of one’s  mind (thought).

AUTHOR’S PHOTO CAPTION: Beside my son Dhavan, it’s me Apoorva B. Raj in the mask. The photo was taken when we were traveling by train to Bangalore on a vacation.