Skepticism drips like rotten milk perspired between my fingers,

Dripping, melting into the pool of this concoction;

A makeshift mix of miscellaneous things,

This recipe that will soon be the mask I will lather on my lips,

A liquid filter,

A cream-based shield

To protect myself from my words.


It catches “BE YOURSELF” before soundwaves are formed,

Absorbs abnormality before its distorted rays

Reach the ears of its recipient,

Before judgements are made

That will crust and crack and shatter the other shields

I have labored to construct.


And then there’s the silence.

The quiet that, for the duration of one moment,

My lips dissect into layers

By virtue of being still.


A layer of lavender relief for the destruction I have evaded;

A layer of chilli-pepper tension for the silence that will soon be

Mushroomed from existence;

A layer of paralyzing, peppermint awareness of

The ground that hums beneath my feet,

Singing, with pride, the words I had not allowed my lips to form.


And here we are,

Trapped for the duration of one moment,

Between layers of silence

That are more honest than our lips will ever be.