maskWhat if I

as a woman of a certain age,
decide to spend a fortune and engage
a surgeon whose expertise in plastic
would make me look just fantastic?

What if I

lying in theatre, trustingly gowned,
ask again before being drowned
in anaesthetic, 'If I submit to the knife,
will it really change my life?'

What if I

looking in the mirror, fail to recognise
the smoothed out skin and youthful eyes,
my life experiences through the years,
my character, all airbrushed up behind my ears?

What if I

think it's better to have lifted eyelids
than take a trip to the pyramids?
Better a firm jawline than to sail down the Nile
outrageously decrepit and lacking in style?

What if I

just don't bother and shout out loud,
show the world I stand unbowed,
I was twenty five in another time, another place,
and I am proud of my collapsing face?

But even so,
I will still ask myself,

'Where did I go?'

©Doreen Hopwood, 2011