The Mask
What have I dared to claim
That you should thus deny?
If I have used your name
My songs to beautify
Mine is the greater fame.
And I have ever sought
But to proclaim your praise,
I have regarded naught
When wandering by your ways
But truth, my only thought.
What favour did I ask
That might constrain your heart
Or heavier make your task?
But now that you depart
Wearing a dreadful mask.
And those accusing eyes
As still as death and cold
Making my soul surmise
My song grown overbold
And all my words unwise—
Now is my claim from thence
That you should hear your heart’s
Pleading in my defence
Before your praise departs
And all your grace goes hence.

Webpage © 2001 ELC
Lane Core Jr. (
Created March 18, 2001; not revised.