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I was six years old,

Out on the playground running jumping playing tag, on the swings

Not a care in the world, smelling the roses observing the baby blue of the neverending sky,

Until i felt it

a  bee stung me, bees, the ones that were dancing on the flowers like some sort of ballet, stinging me, making me cry with the poisonous venom it injected

It seemed as my ideal view of the rosy rainbow world came crashing down like when you pull out the wrong jenga block

Later that day I walked into school and I hear

“Look it’s the terrorist” “She has a bomb” “She’s Osama” - said the little girls suddenly and with no warning                                                                                                                 

I’d never heard what these meant

I wondered what these foreign terms were and soon as I find out that it was me who was foreign

Foreign because I looked different

Foreign because my brown skin was just as different to them as a zebra in a room full of horses

These kids spoke to me as if I didn’t understand English but then assumed that I was being forced to become an engineer

They called me the “curry girl” but it was them who couldn’t take the spice

6 year old me looked at myself in the mirror that night

As I was staring all I could see looking back at me was someone “foreign”

And once again it felt like being stung by a bee

Once I again, it seemed as this rosy rainbow world came crashing down like when you pull out the wrong jenga block                                                                  

People call me naive because I have this idealistic

view of what the world could be one day

Every human being accepted no matter the color of their skin

Every human being treated as if they were human not like an exhibit at the zoo

Every human being seen not at face value or skin value or body type value but at mind value

When people say that my view of the world is a fantasy I think about the Jenga blocks


Ya a few mean girls knocked down my jenga block tower but I built it back up again

A bee stung me and it hurt but I put some neosporin and a band aid on it and I picked myself up again

So no. My view of the jenga block tower world that gets knocked down and built up countless times isn't naive

It's just how progress is made  

By: Tarina Ahuja
Tarina is currently a student at Harvard University majoring in Government.

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