all they see

when they look at me

is whether my beauty

will bring home a

dulha

all they see

when they look at me

is whether my womb

will carry their legacies

all they see

when they look at me

is whether i know how

to clean, to cook,

to serve

all they see

when they look at me

is the reputation

of all the women before me

and mine

all they see

when they look at me

is the skin

i want to claw out of

but they’ll never know

because all they see

when they look at me

is the little girl

who knows nothing,

who cries, who dreams too big,

who’s not much compared to

the ones around her, especially

the men,

who’s never going to go far

for all i was made to do is

make a home out of my womb

and make a home out of my body

for a man to live on.

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