Beauty intervention

“Big sister, how do you like my hair?”
She asks sweetly as she touches the puff of hair on the top of her head. Her hair’s chemically treated straight and painted black.
“Looks good dear” I respond.
She gets up and stretches down the tight skirt she’s wearing, as I stare in disbelief. I can’t believe she has the guts to walk down the street wearing that. My aunties are aging and busy caking makeup over their faces in the meanwhile. They’re gonna walk arm in arm with her proudly down the street so that everyone can stare at them. All of a sudden, they divert their attention randomly at me and talk about how horrible I look.

“Wear some makeup! Dress better! Fix your hair! Don’t you want to stand out?”

Those days are gone. I’ve lost that kind of interest. I’m no longer a teenager. I don’t need that type of attention anymore. Everything feels too late. It just feels different nowadays.

I say, “Don’t need to” apathetically and continue to recline on the bed. I feel like a faded, colorless fish. The fancy and glamorous girl in me, dead for years.

My aunty’s large eyes grow massive and she comes to grab me by the arm, “Get over here! I’m not going to let you embarrass us!”

My aunties hold me down and style my hair, smoothe out my eyebrows, and give my clothes a fitting. I enjoy beauty sessions with them. However, I managed to get away with not getting my face caked with makeup.

“Oh my god, look at how pretty she looks now!” they all congratulate themselves. They rave about how much they’ve improved me.

It’s an odd yet a special feeling. Around my young-at-heart aunties, I’ll always be a little kid that needs fixing… no matter how much we all age together…

My aunt grabs me by the waist and makes me sit on her lap like an overgrown baby, and we pose for a picture, with genuine smiles.

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A Plea

Lord help me
I’m changing too fast
And I can’t keep up with my cells
Soon I’ll turn to sand, and I won’t know what to make of myself anymore.
Is there a way I can stay this ripe? Like a fruit that never dries.
Can you turn me into a painting?
Or like the hieroglyphic arts in Egyptian tombs;
to be imprinted for centuries to come,
alongside carvings of painted eyes full of desire
and lips that hold centuries old secret
under cobwebs,
yet never old


My changing hands

Honey, I don’t know what’s happening to me. My hands are hurting… my fingers, my wrists. I’m afraid I may not be able to hold you. I’m getting older, day by day. In a matter of time I may be lying in bed, unable to move. I’m looking at my aching hands, and even gloves can’t stop this change from happening.

You may think I know what my body is doing, but I’m clueless– just like you… and I’m afraid, just like you.

Honey, I’m sorry if I ever become weak and bedridden. Darling, I’m sorry when I turn into dust. But please know that my feeling for you is stronger than life itself. From a universe unknown I will carry you when you’re tired. In a universe unknown I’ll be waiting, and we’ll be free.