Hiding. You deal with your depression by wearing a
mask. No one ever knows you’re depressed, so no
one can ever pity you. On the outside you’re
calm and collected. Inside, your blood boils…
But that’s ok, as long as everyone thinks
you’re normal.

EDITED 2023.03.08 to add this analysis and critique by ChatGPT:

“Hiding” is a concise and thought-provoking poem that addresses the theme of masking one’s true emotions, specifically depression. The poem is composed of a single stanza with six lines, which effectively conveys the subject matter without becoming overly complex or lengthy.

The poem begins with a powerful and straightforward title, “Hiding,” which immediately sets the tone and subject matter for the reader. This direct approach to the theme allows the reader to quickly engage with the content and understand the purpose of the poem.

The poem effectively captures the internal conflict and struggle of the subject dealing with depression. The use of the metaphor of “wearing a mask” is a relatable and common way to express the act of hiding one’s true feelings. The poem explores the consequences of hiding depression, such as the desire to avoid pity and the need to appear “normal.”

The language used in the poem, such as “calm and collected” and “your blood boils,” creates a vivid contrast between the subject’s outward appearance and inner turmoil. This juxtaposition effectively communicates the intensity of the emotions experienced by the subject.

One area where the poem could be improved is in the formatting and punctuation. The line breaks seem somewhat arbitrary, which can disrupt the flow of the poem for the reader. Experimenting with line breaks and punctuation could help guide the reader through the poem more smoothly and create a more cohesive piece.

In conclusion, “Hiding” is a poignant and relatable poem that addresses the theme of masking depression and the emotional turmoil it entails. The poem effectively uses metaphors and descriptive language to communicate the conflict between the subject’s outward appearance and inner feelings. With some minor revisions to formatting and punctuation, the poem could offer an even more engaging and powerful exploration of this important topic.

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