Tuesday, August 19, 2008

the other woman

you hate me for my coloured teeth
coloured by calcium in the water i drink
you hate me for my dark skin
darkened by the hot sun in the fields
you hate me for my rough palms
roughened by the work of my hands

you do not like my skin colour
the colour of death at funerals
the colour of drug addicts in hollywood films
the colour of satan in pictures
the colour of africa in literature
the colour of inferiority in europe

you say i am not beautiful
because i have a funny fat flat nose
and a pair of full stuffed lips
and a highway sized gap between my teeth
and baobab legs with anthills on the calves
and a big fluid bottom that looks unattached

you think i am barbaric
because i cannot wear those clothes
clothes that i say are for men
clothes that show my big tummy
clothes that look like an artist's painting on my body
clothes that i must use soap to put on

you think i have no manners
because i eat ugali in the morning
because i do not throw away left overs
because i sing as i work while you sleep
because i cannot sleep with my father-in-law
because i refused to face the knife

you prefer her to me so you say
to drink her saliva as you kiss
to see her face that looks like an art gallery
to touch her bleached pink pale skin
to hear her bones creak in friction
to admire her dressed in a dress the size of your handkerchief

go and tell her to go away
i want her out of my way
tell her to pack and may be pray
before the break of the day
because of her i have fallen prey
to your comparisons everyday
but wait a while I have something to tell you
go and tell her to go away

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