SA (28/01/1954 / East Sussex, England)

Behind This Smile

Behind this smile is a host of mixed emotions.
Like a scared rabbit I want to stand stock-still
In the stare of headlight-eyes.

Their interrogating concern
Prompts my reply in cautious terms.
“A little up-hill, one day at a time...how are you? ”

And a brief breathing spell,
Whilst I try to take in
News I’ll certainly forget.

Racing for refuge, making for home,
Ever conscious of quizzing stares.
“Do I have the right shoes on
is my hair a mess
what’s my face doing
is it giving the game away? ”

Behind my solitude-safe door I pant.
Gulping in calming-quiet-air.
I did better last time.

Caffeine stillness takes me over,
And my trembling voice demands,
“Smile, it suits you! ”

by Susan Ashdown

Other poems of ASHDOWN (3)

Comments (5)

I can certainly identify with your poem, Christine. I think it is well-crafted. I like it a great deal. Now I am going on to read more of your poems. I see you are from East Sussex. Whereabouts, I wonder? I was born in Chichester and my brother still lives there. I emigrated to Canada in 1962.
As you know, I fully understand your poem, Sue and relate to it 100 per cent. You express the agony behind the facade, perfectly. Chrissie :)
Very nicely written Susan. Rusty
A nice take on a well-trod subject in poetry. As for the rabbit, usually it's a deer in the headlights, so 2 points for your variation. Another 2 points for not using the word 'mask.'
Nice one Susan I gave you a 10. Hugs Jan