My self or not

I believed I knew myself
every line mapped, every vein marked
the bumps and the dips, all accounted for
burnished and buffed for the world to see
then you came into my life
the “I” you showed me
is so different
I look into the mirror again
and trace the contours of my face
trying to find what you see in me
your fingertips, as they trail over my soul,
reveal facets unknown
your lingering gaze
unravelling all my resolves
your words peep into my future
showing me a different vista
the person I see in the mirror now is not me,
it hurts that I’ve lived with this stranger for so long
as I stare at my likeness dispassionately
I see dark corners deftly disguised
the luminosity is also just reflected glory
I now notice a shoddily tied bundle of fake positivity
the inklings of chaos cleverly concealed
everything shifting and sliding like sand 
a reflection so distorted that I cringe
the one who gazes at me at present
with narrowed eyes from behind the mirror
smiles at my bewilderment and disappears
with a sigh I embark on the journey of self discovery
this time to acknowledge my true self.


71 thoughts on “My self or not

  1. So perceptive and insightful Punam. The way in which you have written it takes us, at a slow pace, almost like a caress, to an understanding of how one person might arrive, through pain, at an understanding of their true self. Something that we all have to do. You are an outstanding poet Punam.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. I am enamored by your words and taken on this journey of finding self. I love that the journey is followable and relatable and so raw in its beauty as in these lines: “I now notice a shoddily tied bundle of fake positivity
    the inklings of chaos cleverly concealed . . .”

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Totally loved the poem.
    It is interesting how we see some people who come into our lives to motivate us and support us and others as those who make us feel less or ugly or not enough.
    In fact, each one of the people we come across has been provided to us by the universe to ‘grow’.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. While I do believe it is possible to learn and discover new things about ourselves – I did truly dislike the times that my parents said they knew me better than I knew myself. I do think it is different if you have a partner who is willing to gently learn with you about yourself as well as take some constructive comments from you to them. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  5. A perceptive, thought-provoking poem. So relatable, Punam! ❤ Part of the challenge with self-exploration is that we are not static. Our perspective is constantly changing and who we are is constantly evolving. Writing is a way to explore the many facets of experience, emotion, and belief.

    Liked by 2 people

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