We talk a lot about that here

Which is good, I think—it must

Be an important theme


I’m not sure why I was talking

Yesterday with my brother

About Guy Fawkes


It’s a strange holiday from my

American look—you know,

“Remember the fifth of

November and such”—but


Then, I have “the eighteenth

Of April, in Seventy-five;/

Hardly a man is now alive”



Remembering, as we should,

That Revere had help from

Other riders, a man and a

Young woman


There—I’ve forgotten about

Masks, like the one on Guy

Fawkes (used in V is for

Vendetta), a definition of

Wry, sardonic looks broadcast

Throughout the realm


Carnivals (pick a nation) wear

Masks, as do some super-

Heroes and, well, bank

Robbers, too


Celebration (okay, maybe

Criminality), impression,

Second plastic skin, the

Need to turn away


But I think we mean the

Masks that hide our feelings,

Even our deeper thoughts—


Things that need concealment

And from which we fear



Do you know who I am? a

Twenty-first century search


Finds sad response: a number

Of YouTubes (Do you know

Who I am? I’m entitled to

Road rage),


Well-known persons in the

Mind, at least, who have

Declared this in a gross

Way—and a book for women


(And, who knows, the book

Might be good)


But for the earnest question,

We don’t perceive the block,

Which is, we cannot ask

The question:


Masks inhibit the seeing of

Another and the hearing of



It’s really a question that

Has beauty; now it needs



To ask and, on the way, taking

Down—relenting—of our

Masks, souls in disguise