Poetry, Tale Africa

What’s in a muscle?

By Vimbai Lole, Zimbabwe:

She is all over you like white on rice.

A year into the past and she would not acknowledge that you existed.

She would not even look your way.

An intense gyming programme later and you are the one,

they talk about when the topic is hot guys

You made it, you, the one they make sure their make-up is perfect for,

So tell me, pray do tell…

How does it feel?

To realise the ones you want to be noticed by only care about what’s outside,

How does it feel when they love the wrapper used to cover the gift inside more than they love the gift because they don’t even open it?

They don’t, they are already taken by the wrapping material.

Does it hurt, does it send a hundred metal cold pins through your heart?

when they disregard all those prayers you make;

Dear Father, please make beautiful what’s inside of me, because you already made my exterior fearfully and wonderfully, so change my character, take me apart and make me again, like you, because you are the potter and I, just the clay, so make me beautiful inside, like you!

Sit there, say something, talk excitedly about your achievements while I stare,

I promise I won't listen to a word, I'm not lying.

I will do nothing but stare at your muscled and toned body.

To make sure you know how it feels when you expect us to be 60cm at the hip, 15cm at the waist, making out chest look like overstuffed cushions.

And when you evaluate us using not the sweat and tears we have invested in building the substance that matters, inside but based on how we look.

Do you understand now, that this light skin, those hazel eyes and that apple bottom are not forever? Sometime you will have to put up with what is inside.

Now go lift weights, you are not worthy till we consider you handsome.

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