Monday, 8 August 2016

Serious #16 too late

You tell me I'm pretty,
you tell me I'm fair,
you tell me I'm okay;
that my eyes look better once bare.

You tell me my hair is soft,
and that it looks better when it's down.
You tell me my nose is sharp,
and my face, slightly round.

You tell me you like my fat arms,
"They give great hugs", you say;
My tanned tomato-potato face is constantly met by,
"Have you put blush on today?"

My smile "one in a million",
my skin apparently smooth,
then why, oh why ma,
Do I look ugly in the photo-booth?

Why do my nice hugging arms look so amplified?
Why does this tooth look crooked here?
Why do the bags underneath my eyes 
look tired, and tried?

"Maybe she's born with it, 
maybe it's make up", 
is what I get to hear now.
"If a mid-thirties woman has no self confidence, 
I should take a bow."

They sneer, they stare
when I go out to the market,
because I'm dressed like I'm going for the prince's ball
and not just gotten out of my blanket.

If only you'd said all that you say now ma,
let's say, ten years back?
I'd not be standing here in front of you,
With my mascara that I can't do without now,
streaming down my face,
my mascara, dark black.

- Ragini Zutshi Anand

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