What Lies Beneath by Christopher Queen

Christopher Queen lives in Franklin County and writes with Ruth Flohr’s creative writing group in Wendell. He has taught world religions, served as a university dean of students, and publishes on Buddhist social ethics. He wears his mask in public.

What Lies Beneath 

Some look deeply into eyes
To scan the silted depth
Where the soul lies shining
Beneath currents of care
Nets of tangled engagement
Shadows of hope fulfilled or not.

But I watch the play of lips
To catch a clue of sincerity
Assertion vulnerability or truth
Finding as often layers of retreat
Resistance reticence or hurt
Poorly disguised by smiles or not.

So, if I looked away when you asked
It is because your mouth was masked.