Look, they told me
He is the servant’s son
Don’t play with dirt

His mother washed our dirty uniforms
cleaned out those reminders of being muckily human-
food, mud, body fluids and odors
Our floors she wiped till they shone
Our grime, we transferred to her body
to her caste, her occupation, her name

Look, they said
He collects cow dung with his mother
His shorts show more skin yet no shame
He doesn’t bathe, doesn’t go to school
Don’t play with him

We buy manure for our flowers from them
Those shorts were mine till they frayed
How come they became an abomination
for someone who had none?

Look, she is muslim, he a pentecostal
the other one a bong, a turbaned guy
a midget, a hirsute, a eunuch
dark as night, yellow, too white,

I went away and  played with everyone
who wasn’t a man-eater and
who wanted to play with me
Couldn’t see what they kept pointing at
I was born blind I think
©Reena Prasad


3 thoughts on “Blinded

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