Skin

Here my life began in a belly- fear of the dark
In a sky not visible, filled with fearful locusts
That comes in swarms, across the snow hills.
The swarms eat up all our grasses in the way.
But woman-insects begin life in the same way,
Afraid of the dark in their own womb houses.

 
I now swim in this my pool, where I had come
Not of my own, my dad being of different skin.
When I come out of these waters into the sun
My skin shall wear all those paints in the sun
So it can please the leathery skins of dad’s class
And I can build my own womb-house to host
A tiny swimming tadpole, with a swaggering tail
That shall never have belly-fears of the dark.
But I only fear that my oxygen will be cut off
Before I open my eyes to the sun in the hills.

 (Female feticide is practiced in some parts of India due to preference for the male offspring, ostensibly to carry on the family lineage)

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