I have to watch the road and look away
I know what it says if I choose to stay
Desperation suits all people ill
But damn if I’m not desperate still
I like to fancy that I know you well
The danger does not harm the sell
I feel less alone when I’m with you
And I wonder if you aren’t lonely too
Ah, the holes we like to dig
I know you’re a wolf with a sheepish wig
But I still wonder if in your wolfish heart
All you really are is torn apart.
I’m not pretty when I cry:
No slow and somber tears;
My nose is never dry.
Just a pouring out of all my fears,
Or so I stutteringly try;
And it turns out, for all my preening
I’m just a human being
And it’s not worth the effort I make to try to lie.
There’s a face you’re used to seeing
And I’m not sure that it’s mine;
My own is always fleeting
And you don’t catch it quite in time.
You only see what I am showing —
But you never seem to mind,
Or see what I most fear you knowing,
Or what I most wish for you to find.
Instead you shout for a beginning…
But for me the show is always on;
And as the act begins you think you’re winning
But if you looked, you’d find the actor gone.
What became of us I do not know.
Were we buried beneath the dirt, or snow?
Did we drown beneath the waves so low,
We thought there was noplace underneath to go?
Did we walk the walk right off a cliff?
Did we stay still until the ground would shift?
Did we our spirits try to lift,
Only to fall, or remain adrift?
Did we try to fix the dissonance
With a simple shift of countenance,
Believing that a road paved with pretense
Might be the path to happiness?
Did we wave as the real thing passed us by,
Seeing only a stranger in our eye,
But wondering still if we should stop and lie
And talk about the weather with a sigh?
I suppose we just walked on instead,
Admiring roses black instead of red,
Not bothering to note where this road always led.
Perhaps that is why we lie here dead.
My weak disguise is wearing thin;
I wonder what we’ll find within?
If what’s there is worth setting free;
And if what I sometimes was will someday be.
You tell me I’m no fun,
But I think I’ve overdosed on it:
Years spent laughing, joking;
Often feeling none of it.
You tell me I should talk some more,
But what have I to say?
Nothing you would like to hear,
So I think it best I stay away.
You tell me there’s a world out there;
Well, what is that to me?
I am not you, my dear,
Nor will I ever be.
You suggest I should be happy,
That to speak to me you deign;
But if we’re to talk about the weather,
I think I’d rather speak of rain.
Is this what I am,
A child of lowly aspirations?
Never being what I can;
Always changing faces
To hide from all my others,
Never sure just what they are,
And whether they are simply covers
While the real one’s somewhere far.
And if it is, how can I reach it?
How can I define “myself,”
When I don’t know if I can see it,
Or if I’ll ever get it off the shelf?
My mask is a shifting face,
Grafted to my skin;
And I can’t tell where it ends,
Or whether I begin.
Beyond my shield of glass:
I see you standing there.
But you will never feel my presence;
Never know how much I care.
I thought that I could save you
If I just kept myself away.
How hard to maintain distance
From the one you live for every day.
I know what it means to you;
I know it doesn’t mean a thing.
I know every word I speak
Might say that I’m insane.
But I know what it means,
And I know I’m not alone;
I can’t be the only one
Speaking the same code.