The Color of My Skin

Anamika Dutta

“It’s so exotic”,

“You look like Pocahontas”,

“I love how tanned you are”,

“Oh, your color is so sexy”,

The color of my skin,

It’s not for you to objectify, it’s a part of me.

The color of my skin is who I am!

This golden hue, the wavy black hair,

These gloomy dark eyes, no, they’re not for share!

No, you can’t touch it nor ask how I take care of it,

You mustn’t say “you’re lucky, you don’t burn”

I know the color of my skin makes you curious,

It’s ever so mysterious and sensuous,

The color of my skin isn’t exactly brown, 

You’d say “chestnut” or “almond”,

Or the name of some bizarre food item,

No, I won’t frown, I’m used to it.

“Oh! My God! I love your skin-color”,

That over-excited lady at the make-up counter,

Although she could never match my shade,

But she LOVES my color.

Then why do I feel less than all of you?

If my color is so beautiful,

Why’s it so prejudiced?

Why am I made to feel different?

I don’t count this as discrimination,

I say it’s ignorance.

The pigment of my skin, the melanin I carry,

Has to decide my future?

Is that all I am?

The exotic girl from India! Look at her.

“She’s only here for diversity”

“We’re all inclusive of colors”

“We believe there’s beauty in every shade”

I’m tired! I’m tired of your nonsensical advertisements that make me question.

I’m not the color of my skin,

It’s the color of my skin,

Please understand the difference.

***

Watch my performance of this Spoken Word on YouTube

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