layer upon layer of confidence
underneath it all
lay someone vulnerable
presented so rarely
when the occasion comes
all that is exposed
rather than authenticity
is yet another face crafted
from the unseemly materials
of stutter
solemn
and stumble

the downside to the saying
fake it until you make it
is that it takes a certain level
of apathy and self-imposed oblivion
to avoid an unexpected relapse
into this mask of the true self
in the most unexpected
of situations

life goes on
changes in identity follow
but impressions etch themselves so
to make them all ever scarring