These tipped-up lips of wide renown
of the world’s most famous clown
are but pigment and not the man.
We know him not, for no one can.
No one assumes the painful task
of seeing what’s behind the mask.
The cloth that wipes it off each night
brings his true nature into sight,
for painted smiles are thrown away
as truth of night displaces day.
Underneath his painted mask,
he hides the truth we dare not ask.
One more day of tricks and laughter
cannot make up for what comes after.
His face, stripped down to flesh and bone,
reveals that he is all alone.
A painted face, a made-up smile
cannot mend a lover’s guile.
For the dVerse pub prompt.