The Mask

So detached and cool she is

No motion e'er betrays

The secret life within her soul,

The anguish of her days.

She seems to look upon the world

With cold ironic eyes,

To spurn emotion's fevered sway,

To scoff at tears and sighs.

But once a woman with a child

Passed by her on the street,

And once she heard from casual lips

A man's name, bitter-sweet.

Such baffled yearning in her eyes,

Such pain upon her face!

I turned aside until the mask

Was slipped once more in place.

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