exposure

by hiraeth   Jun 22, 2020


my skin drinks in the sun, turning a
shade or two darker – a homage to our
sun-kissed ancestors, but my aunt
suggests covering up, and bleaching
skin creams, as if there’s something
inherently wrong with a darker shade
of brown. in the moment, i hesitate to
respond; the village mindset is small,
poisoned over the years, how is there
supposed to be organic growth when
her grandmother chastised her mother
for not being fair enough? as if the same
Krishna she holds dear to hear heart, isn’t
blacker than a starless night sky?
i ask her,
what’s wrong with being dark?

after a moment of internally grasping
at straws, some vague reason to
backtrack to, she says ‘nothing’
and her voice trails off into
uncomfortable silence.

3


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