Smiles Behind Your Mask /
Little White Lies

Sharon Lask Munson

Smiles Behind Your Mask

Laughs are infectious,

smiling a natural response.


Smile as the family

gathers on Zoom

for your father’s 95th birthday.


Smiling is good for your heart.


Smile often.

Your eyes will show pleasure,

private amusement, or simple happiness.


Smile behind your mask.

A smile elevates your mood,

lowers blood pressure.


Smiling feels good.


Smile on your daily walks.

Wave to neighbors!

They’ll wave back.


Smile at the line of cars

honking up and down the boulevard.

Someone is graduating or having a birthday.


Wave, even if you don’t know that person.


Smiling makes you look younger.

Keep that secret behind your mask.

Little White Lies


The dress looks lovely on you,

beige is definitely your color.


Regretfully, I never got your message.

My cell phone went out with the trash.

Wish I could have made the conference.


No, you weren’t too surly

at Beverly’s party Friday night.

Everyone was glad to see you.


Hardly anyone gossiped about your divorce.

Of course it wasn’t your fault.


I didn’t mind your little rant.

You have a right to your opinion.


Really, you weren’t that drunk at the party.

Just having a good time.

No, I didn’t see anyone take photos

when you landed in the punch bowl.


Yes, we should get together more often.


Next Thursday won’t work,

or the Thursday after,

but I’ll give you a buzz when I’m free.


It will be good to see you again.

Of course, I mean it.

Sharon Lask Munson is a retired teacher, poet, old movie enthusiast, lover of road trips—with many published poems, two chapbooks, and two full-length books of poetry. She says many things motivate her to write: a mood, a memory, the smell of cooking, burning leaves, a windy day, rain, fog, something observed or overheard—and of course, imagination. She lives and writes in Eugene, Oregon.

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