It's what's beneath that matters most

hands holding wires with lights

You don’t see the struggle behind these walls

You don’t hear the rushing blood or feel the stringy sinews

You don’t see the space within, closed off from the world

Or smell the sweating madness, dripping with passion

I’ve heard others have this, too

Their own private battles

Behind their own armored walls

That they wage hidden wars

Much like I fight my own

The world is a harsh canvas

Aggressive brushstrokes across a page

Arcs already chosen, Colors predetermined

So much paint caked on

That it takes years for it to to flake off

And reveal what’s underneath

You may comment on my colors

Admire the highlights in my tapestry

Inside this portrait that we share

The one on which I know — and you know — the flaking off

Of paint chips

The fleeing of prismatic flecks

Is not a flaw in the design

It’s a revealing, an unleashing

Of what was there all along, telling you

It’s what’s beneath that matters most