One Day

All of a sudden, what happened, they asked?
They didn’t remember the things they had said,
Red lipstick makes you look like a Grant Road prostitute.
Your hair is the only beautiful thing about you.
Why don’t you colour your hair? You’ll look so good.
White makes you look darker than you already are.
Where’s the bindi? What are you, a widow?!
You know, they used to shave the hair of widows. And fallen women and women who trespass their caste, their class, their gender.
It wasn’t sudden. She listened to all of them.
And then, one day.

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