Once upon a time son,
They used to laugh with their hearts
And laugh with their eyes.
But now they only laugh with their teeth,
While their ice-block-cold eyes
Search behind my shadow.
There was a time indeed
They used to shake hands with their hearts,
but that's gone son.
Now they shake hands without their hearts,
while they left hands search
my empty pockets.
'Feel at home!' 'Come again!'
They say and when I come,
Again and feel
at home, once, twice,
there will be no thrice -
for then I find doors shut on me.
So I have learned many things, son.
I have learned to wear many faces
Like dresses - homeface
officeface, streetface, hostface,
cocktailface, with all their comforting smiles
like a fixed portrait smile.
And I have learned too.
To laugh with only my teeth,
and shake hands without my heart.
I have also learned to say, 'good-bye'
when I mean 'good-riddance.'
To say 'glad to meet you,'
without being glad; and to say, 'it's been
nice talking to you,' after being bored.
But believe me, son,
I want to be what I used to be,
when I was like you. I want
to unlearn all these muting things.
Most of all, I want to relearn
How to laugh, for my laugh in the mirror
shows only my teeth
like a snakes bare fangs!
So show me, son,
how to laugh, show me how.
I used to laugh and smile,
Once upon a time when I was like you.