My Own Reflection

Your face - it's so beautiful

Yet I cannot bear to look

For I fear that I may see

In it, my own reflection


I ask you - please, turn away

I beg of you - just do it

My minds consumed by terror

A nightmare lies between us


You're asking me - I know it

To share our lives together

Have you never read the quote

Yes -  l'enfer, c'est les autres


Don't you know that I'll fail you

I'll see your disappointment

And then your eyes will harden

I'll suffer for your judgement


So go on take your beauty

Beauty that I cannot face

For I fear that I may see

In you, my own reflection.



"So this is hell. I'd never have believed it. You remember all we were told about the torture-chambers, the fire and brimstone, the 'burning marl.' Old wives' tales! There's no need for red-hot pokers. Hell is - other people!"           Jean-Paul Sartre, No Exit.


  • Cheeky Missy

    Fascinating...alluring. But as once hopeful "WE"....the reflection of the other...the other's equally passionate fire of love, we so desired to meet in each other's eyes. And if it IS love, then it cannot end as this poem thus envisions, with a destruction of the fondest hopes and dearest loves by time...can it? Love will forgive and pass over the necessary imperfections, thus growing deeper and stronger over time...the image more clearly than ever, etched and moulded in each other....wouldn't it? I much enjoyed reading this, and was only disappointed in the sorry thought that meeting your own reflection in her eyes would be the destruction of the love you now had. I figure from the Sartre quote you were making a poem of that thought; yet love, if it is true would not do so, would it? Beautiful and bittersweet.....again, I enjoyed it.

    • dbremner

      Thanks for your reply. I suppose the poem tried to portray Sartres idea that we see ourselves in the way others see us - or as we see them seeing us.
      I often think there would be nothing worse if we could 'hear' everything everyone thought/said about us!
      My poem is largely about self-conciousness which stems partly from the 'expected norms' that are in place for us the moment we are born and which then restrict our individual freedoms as we grow.
      Thanks for commenting!

    • Alexandre Landsley

      Pretty good poem!!

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