A Thousand Masks One Face

She sat in front of the mirror
A thousand lights blazing
Reflecting, refracting light
From her makeup-less face

She examined the skin
The contours, the dimples
The wrinkles, the age spots
The laughter lines, the ravages

A face that usually wore
Many layers of pancake
Foundation, mascara, eyeliners
Highlighters, lipstick and rouge

The face that launched in public
A thousand ads, products
A million lights, camera angles
Multitudes of frames per second

A face that adorned in colour
Many cinema halls, hoardings
Public posters, teenage walls
And arrow pierced hearts

A face that fairly presented
To the world different masks
Of thousand characters
Donning many parts, roles

A mask of a face reflecting
Myriad emotions, situations
Of characters in interaction
In the business of life

The navarasas in plastic
A face that reverberated
From within and without
Feelings, hurts and happiness

A face that forgot the inner mirror
A true born self, dual persona
I, the body, the eternal soul
A person lost under thousand masks

Who am I asked the questioning face
In the mirror, a woman, daughter
A wife, mother, friend, professional
Foe, colleague, socialite, activist

Somewhere lurks a lost girl
Who indulged in simple pleasures
Delighting in the trivial
Joyful at the wonder of being

In the dark of the night
She wakes up with a start
The thousand faces streaming
In a never ending loop of masks

Who am I
Where do I come from
Where am I going
What have I achieved

The masks laugh, weep
Snigger and shriek, crying
You need a face transplant
To find that one lost soul


About padmum

You could call me Dame Quixote! I tilt at windmills. I have an opinion on most matters. What I don't have, my husband Raju has in plenty. Writer and story teller, columnist and contributer of articles, blogs, poems, travelogues and essays to Chennai newspapers, national magazines and websites, I review and edit books for publishers and have specialized as a Culinary Editor and contributed content, edited and collaborated on Cookbooks. My other major interest is acting on Tamil and English stage, Indian cinema and TV. I am a wordsmith, a voracious reader, crossword buff and write about India's heritage, culture and traditions. I am interested in Vedanta nowadays.
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6 Responses to A Thousand Masks One Face

  1. Grannymar says:

    Wow! You are really talented. I love it.


  2. rummuser says:

    That’s my girl alright. Fabulous.


  3. Anupama says:

    Brilliant I would say!


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