The Mask


I wear the mask so others will see
What I think they expect of me
I wear a different mask for each
And keep myself out of reach
I wear the mask as others do
Mask to mask who is who?

I wear the mask so you will see
Not what I am but want to be
I wear the mask I wear it well
Face or mask who can tell?
I wear a mask that wears me too
As I forget who is who

Published by


Troydon Wainwright is a philosopher and Reiki Master based in Cape Town. Born with mild cerebral palsy and dyslexia, Toydon learnt to write as a way to overcome the barriers his dyslexia placed in front of him. “I wrote my way out of dyslexia,” said Troydon, “or at least to the point where reading and writing aren’t a problem anymore.” During the day he works as an educational facilitator (someone who helps special needs students cope academically and become more independent). At night he dedicates his time to writing. He has won a Nova award for his short story, The Sangoma’s Storm, and been a feature poet at the Off the Wall poetry readings in Cape Town and at Cape Town Central Library. Three of his poems were also included in the anthology Africa’s Best New Poets. He has also been published in the South African Literary journal, New Contrast. One of his Facebook posts, in which he took a stand against racism, has gone viral (

2 thoughts on “The Mask”

  1. Hi Troydon
    I hope you are well. I like your style of writing, it’s as if every word on every line is treated delicately, yet it is the skillful control of tone the words command, which ultimately make the poem memorable. I like The Mask in particular. I like the poem’s simplicity and it’s use of language, and even with some cliched expected rhymes, the movement of the words in each line carry a heavy, layered tone, and show a lot of sincerity. i liked this poem very much, it says so much without saying a lot. thanks.

    Mak Manaka

    1. Thank you for the feedback, Mak Manaka. I appreciate it. Your comment was the first that anybody has ever made on this site. It’s nice to know that someone out there is reading.

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