Poetry – Lines – a poem about aging and being true to yourself, wondering who you really are.

I wrote this while looking into a mirror and studying my face. I was wondering just how many of my feelings, views and philosophy was mine and how much was put there by my culture, upbringing, education, social mores and adopted position.

We are all subject to expectations and restrictions. We are all put through the cultural mincer. What comes out the other end is a shredded version.

How much of my philosophy was merely reaction against the pressures on me and how much were my genuine views.

How can you tell?

Is there a real essence of me that makes objective decisions on matters of morality or actions? Or are we pulled back and forth by the forces acting upon us?

I was fortunate that my family did not indoctrinate me with their politics or religion. They left me to discover my own mind. But the school, my friends and society at large had bearing on my thoughts.

Where am I in the midst of those lines on my face? They are familiar and yet the more I stare the more unknown I become. The lines lie.

Am I a product or an essence?


Read between the lines

On my face

That’s where the truth


Down through the years

On my genes

Written in disguise


Drifting through the tides

Of time

Rushing through the dreams

Of space

Wondering at the sense

Of wonder

Gouged deep within

My face.


Opher 25.7.95