Faceless

It all started as a game.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been a people-watcher.

As a child, I would watch people for hours before even attempting to talk to them.

I’d scrutinize how you spoke. What you wore. When you laughed. What you liked. Whom you talked to.

I would watch and watch, try to figure out who you were. What you wanted.

And once I put together the pieces of your identity, I would form my own, making sure they clicked.

It was like a puzzle that only I could finish and it amused me to have that sort of power over you: to control exactly what you see.

But under all of that, I’d ensured that I was that girl:

The girl you want to speak to.

The girl you share all your secrets with.

The girl you like.


I flit from one person to the next, as graceful as a butterfly.

Always smiling. Always pleasing.

You come to me when you don’t have anyone else, and it’s my shoulder you cry on, it’s into my ears you whisper your darkest secrets.

I am as smooth as oil, calm as the surface of lifeless water.

I soothe. I comfort. I encourage. I motivate. I charm.

And when I’m finally alone, I laugh.

I laugh at the world, at how gullible you are, to think you know me, to trust me the way you do.

I laugh till I cry and then I cry till I can’t breathe.

The tears never end, it seems, they flow and flow relentlessly, leeching me of everything.

The real joke was on me, all along.

And I’d never realized.


I look in the mirror and don’t recognize the shadow that looks back into my eyes.

I don’t ‘like’ her.

If I was being true to myself, I would say I despise her.

I see myself wrapping my hands around her throat and squeezing until the light slowly fades from her eyes.

And then, I realize the girl is me.

The irony: I’d gained the affection of everyone else, only to realize that I couldn’t win me over too.

Alone, I’m a coward. I’m despicable. Spineless. A doormat. A hypocrite.

I morph myself to suit the people around me. My very identity is built on everyone else’s desires.

I’m no one without someone to please. Nothing without a task to complete.

And there is nothing left of ‘me’ now, of the person I could have been.

Before. Before all the masks.


When I look back, all I see is crushed dreams, and when I look forward, I see an eternity of nothingness.

But it’s what I see when I look within that truly scares me.

Underneath all my masks, I am faceless.


Photo by John Noonan on Unsplash



PS In May 2019, I will be moving to a new web address. I’m shifting to a personal domain and I’m so, so excited for you to see it! Buying my domain is giving me so much more freedom for new features, design, and I can’t wait for you to get started there.

But on the downside, all those of you who’ve subscribed to my blog here WILL NOT be notified of new posts anymore. I’d hate for you to miss out just because I’ve shifted addresses, but WordPress doesn’t offer anything to straighten this out.

So to make sure that the change is as seamless as possible, I’d be so grateful if you’d enter your email ID below so we can stay in touch. You can opt-out any time, no hard feelings. I hate spam and I’ll only be reaching out every two weeks or so for blog updates, I promise.

Thank you so much for all your support. ❤

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.



Advertisements

387 Comments Add yours

  1. I love your style, and I am quite humbled by your follow … thank you so much!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. It was my pleasure. Thank you so much for taking the time to drop by and comment! It really means a lot ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This was amazing, it brought me back to old memories. I am honoured by your follow. Thank you so much! ❤

    Liked by 3 people

    1. It was my pleasure. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment! ❤

      Like

  3. Karel says:

    I’ve started and given up on writing this very poem so many times. Every single line resonates so much and the writing is excellent as well.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Glad you liked it, Karel! Thank you so much! ❤

      Like

  4. Really touching. It is true we are our worst fears

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Glad you liked it, Nathan! Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment! ❤

      Like

  5. That was really awesome. You nailed it !

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you so much, Saksham! Glad you liked it! ❤

      Like

  6. I really enjoy reading your writings. This was a good mix of naivete & realization of actions.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. That really means a lot. Thank you! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

    2. You’re welcome!! Thank you checking mine. 👈

      Liked by 1 person

  7. WB says:

    Wonderful display of self-abuse, and it expressing it. Great writing.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you so much! Glad you liked it! ❤️

      Like

  8. Golden Bird says:

    You wrote beautifully

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much! ❤

      Like

  9. Emerald says:

    t was like a puzzle that only I could finish and it amused me to have that sort of power over you: to control exactly what you see.

    Yea… Exactly who I am

    Please help read and comment on my posts to know your thought

    Liked by 6 people

  10. Anonymous says:

    Beautiful: simply beautiful.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Ohwomaniya says:

    I like your writing style 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  12. Dija says:

    Inspiring ❤️

    Liked by 4 people

  13. malikamai says:

    Wow! That really resonated with me. it was if you were standing directly in the middle of my thoughts. Love it!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Glad you liked it! Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment! ❤️

      Like

  14. urmireads says:

    I’m left with no words, Natalie! You’re awesome and so are your works😍😍😍

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you so much. That really means a lot ❤

      Like

  15. We all wear masks, each and every day. And we change them according to the situation in which we are at the particular moment. The more masks we wear, the more we lose ourselves.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Exactly what I was getting at… thank you so much for taking the time to read and share your thoughts here, Ianus! It means a lot to me ❤

      Like

  16. Harshad Naik says:

    After reading the whole thing I’m left with only one word “Beautiful”..!! It’s so on point.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you so much, Harshad! Glad you liked it! ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Living Waters Blog says:

    This is so me. I am a people watcher as well. My wife thinks it’s strange and calls me a stocker. I enjoy watching people at the mall. It’s as if I’m trying to learn about them just by watching. Sometimes, I’m right. Sometimes I’m wrong.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Mmm I can relate. Especially with the creep factor 😉

      Like

  18. This sadly is really true for so many of us… I actually am going through this phase right now.. like.. almost everyone around me.. they claim that I am predictable and categorize me based on the version of me I am around them.. which is irritating but at the same time its not their complete fault either.. I mean is it? 7

    Liked by 2 people

  19. HealthyVeganLife says:

    This is beautifully written, resonates well with my soul actually. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. this poem is a mirror, reflecting back, pushing us pass the surface… a truth that should and will convict. This is the type of poetry that won’t be easily forgotten… well articulated, expressed and transparent.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much. I’m so glad you thought so! ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Shiva says:

    Nicely done! 🙂
    This post reminded me of a quote that I had come across some time back and it got stuck in my head since then-

    “But to be liked, you must never disagree. And if you never disagree, it’s like only breathing in and never breathing out! A man can suffocate on courtesy”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s such an intruiging thought. I simply love the analogy. The idea that air itself can kill you seems perfect for this. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and share this here! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you liked it. ❤

      Like

  22. rebellove says:

    Thanks for sharing your inner thoughts. We all judge, from the must kindest of people to the meanest of people. It doesn’t make you a bad person. Love your self first and that love shall spill over to those around you.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s a beautiful thought. Thank you for taking the time to read and share this here. It really means a lot ❤

      Like

  23. Sanket Rasal says:

    It’s the truth about our very human existence. It’s not just a small part of life, it’s is the entire process of human upbringing. We grow on peoples desire, expectations & social norms; it becomes a mask on each one of us. Mask of fallacy world. And when we peek inside. ‘We’ the unmasked, unconventional and utterly real but empty as nothing. Loved the thought.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That was so beautifully expressed, Sanket. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and leave such a lovely comment. It means a lot. Hope you have an amazing 2019! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  24. “The girl you like.
    I flit from one person to the next, as graceful as a butterfly.” Hmm

    Liked by 2 people

  25. KT says:

    So metamorphosis – oh so beautiful – has an evil? No surprise. Lovely writing.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you. I’m glad you enjoyed it ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  26. My favourite so far. I see myself reflected back looking out from my own ivory tower. Writers wear many masks and pose and pout before the mirror of souls. We watch, we look, we write. We are scribes of the ridiculous and markers of make believe. A writer can touch the heart of others and grasp the core of a life yet we struggle to know ourselves. We are faceless so we can wear the faces of others so we may tell their tale. For that is our purpose, to wear the mask of others.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. That was so beautifully said. Thank you for taking the time to read and share such a stunning piece ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  27. illusionaire says:

    So relatable. So beautifully written. Love all your posts. 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much. That means a lot ❤

      Like

    1. Thank you for the reblog. It truly means a lot ❤

      Like

  28. Stuff that matters says:

    This was sooo powerful! Thank you so much for this.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m glad it resonated. Thank you for taking the time to read and comment, Anila. That means a lot ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  29. bukesbunny says:

    You really, do have a great site and an obviously awesome Talent💞 The world can’t hold you anymore sometime to come… Keep it up! I’m intrigued

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! This means a lot.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. bukesbunny says:

      We help each other grow Don’t we?

      Liked by 1 person

  30. Wow. Wow. Wow. The muse was forever with you on this. Truth in this too. What a villain. Yet a face is just another mask one wears for long term. Keep enthralling us.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much. I’m delighted to hear that ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  31. mywritings21 says:

    Loved reading Faceless. But saddened when you said, “But under all of …ensured…girl you like.”
    It is often so hard to differentiate between the necessity and indecency of wearing a mask. There is hardly anyone who likes when you live faceless (bare) and not wear a mask on. I think it will be difficult to name a person who hasn’t worn any sort of mask ever. Call it an irony of existence or whatever, everything has a mask, a disguise, a pretension at some point, if you agree. Your innocent and a sad tone suggest an attitude society demands; a tension between what you ought to be and what you want, both requiring masks of their own.
    This is what I think, and wanted to share with you. When is your new post coming?

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I agree. And I love what you’ve said here: a tension between what you ought to be and what you want, both requiring masks of their own. It’s ironic that what I am is not relevant at all. It reminds me of something I read today, that in Japanese, there are multiple personal pronouns instead of the single ‘I’ of English, to denote multiple relationships and facets of the personality. Language is always highly suggestive of culture. What if the self is just an accumulation of masks? What if we’re all faceless underneath the masks because a solitary human just might not exist? Every single action we take is always relevant to someone else, whether we know it or not. That being the case, at the end of the day, all we are is the sum of our relationships, and by extension, the sum of all the people we’re known to be, the sum of our masks.
      Thoughts?

      Oh, and my new post is coming up tomorrow, hopefully. My new site, on the other hand, is taking longer than I thought it would, so maybe a month or so.

      Liked by 2 people

  32. mywritings21 says:

    Thank you so much, Shreya.
    I completely agree with your questions. I think we may also visualize ourselves as nothing but a play of energy. Now that energy is invisible to our naked eyes, it becomes visible only when it (pretends to) assume(s) some kind of form. What form it will assume depends upon different conditions and situations that prevail. And each of these forms is a kind of mask.
    Am I irrelevant?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No, not at all.
      I love the analogy.
      It makes sense to look at the soul as raw energy, and it’s a comforting thought, to believe that masks aren’t an extension of insecurities, only facets of an intangible whole.

      Liked by 1 person

  33. Its just beyond any praises!💘
    You capture the subtleties, the thoughts that we usually get in our mind but we ignore them finding them unimportant and you just hold them and arrange them strikingly!
    One more thing, Natalie Swift is your pen name?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much, Bhavya! This means so much to me. ❤
      And yes, Natalie Swift was my pen-name, but I only go by Shreya Vikram today.

      Liked by 1 person

  34. What an amazing title and a beautiful write up.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Pritha.

      Like

  35. machiavellianstreak says:

    This is a crucial question! Many people don’t seem to know how not to be their masks. Then, there are psychopaths, who are a collection of masks they wear, depending on the occasion. Thank you for writing this blog!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Glad you enjoyed it! Thank you for taking the time to read and comment<3

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the reblog, Ora.<3

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Ora says:

      you are welcome

      Like

  36. Magesh Pandurangan says:

    Very Impressive blog.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply to BlackJack in Bali Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s