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Sukanya’s Love Song

Posted: April 18, 2021

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Join Sukanya as she takes a liberating journey of self-discovery and empowerment, challenging societal norms and shaking off its expectations. Along the way, she learns where the magic truly lies.

I’m Sukanya
And I’m one lucky girl
For I’ve found a magic potion!
I’ll slather my face with it
Morn and night,
Every day of every season,
To be my loveliest self.

Deeper than skin-deep,
My potion will penetrate
Each pore and every cell.
It’ll lighten and whiten and brighten
The without from within.
It’ll banish all my blemishes
And polish me to perfection.

And voila!
The magic will be mine.
My brown swept away, my tan cast out,
Luminous as the moon, radiant as the sun,
I’ll become my fairest best.
True to my name, I’ll become,
Su-kanya: Beautiful-girl

And I’ll be more, much more.
Not a mark or a blemish to hold me back,
Not a freckle or a flaw to deter,
Unburdened and unfettered,
I’ll soar on wings of grit and gumption.
I’ll touch lofty dreams,
And show the world my mettle.

With bated breath, I apply my potion
Morn and night,
Every day,
Of every week,
For weeks on end.
And voila!
I stare at an ashen me.

One day, the question tugs at me
From a place deep inside of me:
why do my flaws stand taller,
Pointing fingers at me,
Declaring: “You’re less than”
Ever since the magic potion found its way to me
More questions spring up fast and strong:

Can a colour assign (assume?) a trait?
If ivory is impeccable, can brown brave be?
Can a tint impart a virtue?
If porcelain is pure, can tan trailblazing be?
Can a shade endow a gift?
If fair is lovely, can dark dauntless be?
NO! I declare.

For I know.
I forgot but briefly
That my face and my colour
Are mine,
But not by me.
Both a random draw
From crisscrossing bloodlines going back in time.

But my world
Is wont to tie my worth
To my face and my colour.
Not to the road I tread, or the stand I take, or the battles I pick
All mine,
And by me.
All children of my designs and my decisions.

And my world
Sets the same one colour of beauty
For me, and her and her.
Turns a blind eye
To the mixed shades all around.
Each so different,
And so perfect in itself.

The powers that be,
Knowing well my world’s leanings,
Declare what’s beautiful with pomp and flair.
Then decree: That beauty is power,
And tag me, and her and her
As lacking and powerless
As that beauty we weren’t born with.

The powers that be,
Well-heeled and well-armed,
Rope in celebrities and “experts”
To peddle promises and dole out dreams
Wrapped in wares cheaply bought;
Wares that’ll deftly hide
The shade I was born in.

The powers that be,
Hungry for more power and pelf
Claim to empower and embolden me,
While they limit my very imprint
To my face and my colour
And sow seeds of doubt deep within me
For being born as me.

The powers that be,
It’s for me to clip their wings,
By reclaiming what’s mine
By letting myself be, that who I am:
Deeper than my colour, wider than my face.
By owning my tussles with me to be my better self
But always ⎯ my own self.

My brown is just a color
It doesn’t debase me in this world
Or exalt me in a different one.
My flaws don’t fetter me,
My imperfections don’t impair me.
Perfecting them is the road to nowhere
That I choose not to take.

And I am more, much more.
My colour, my code, my creed
My spirit, my song, my story
My flaws, my fears, my fantasies,
My thoughts, my words, my deeds
My whole self is mine
Mine to love and call my own.

I’m Sukanya
And I’m one lucky girl
For I’ve found my way back to me!
I own what’s mine; I sing my love song to me
Morn and night,
Every day of every season.
To be my best self.

Deeper than skin-deep,
I know in each pore and every cell
The freedom and power
Of defying the limits
The world sets for me
For being born
As me.

And voila!
I’ve made magic.
My doubts swept away, my fears cast out
At home and in love
With my whole self.
True to my name, I am,
Su-kanya: Beautiful-Girl

Image credits: Scopio, via Canva Pro

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