Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Faved!: Alana Azlan's Beneath the Layers

During the years I spent teaching literature at the self sustaining mini universe of IIUM, my students have been a constant source of laughter and love. It was the only thing that made me stay on in a place that was too rigid to accept me for who I am. From one semester to another, I watched as  individuals slowly fell in love with poetry, just like I did when I was younger. It was an amazing experience. One of my students, Alana Azlan, slowly found her voice through poetry and she began writing them and performing them. She also cofounded the poetry collective Lip Movement Poetry (tumblr:, whose members can be seen spewing poetry here and there in this city named KL.

It is not just a morning ritual

The makeup she puts on
Helps cover the mistakes of
Of yesterday, of the past
To cushion the blows of the coming day
The slippery creams and liquids
Do well to hide the scars,
The acne, the bruises from crowbars
All the same,
They need to be silenced,
To be matted out
To prevent looks of curiosity and doubt
Concealing blemishes and swollen skin
Doing anything just to fit in
To look the part of perfect Barbie
Almost perfect, but really hardly
She dots on mascara,
Smears on some lipstick
But knows that these layers
Will never really fix it
Practices her poses, her winning smile
Attempting normalcy
Just for a while
And as she daydreams
Of tales only found in books,
She pats on powder to complete the look
Voila. Porcelain.
Like a China Doll that has been
Touched and handled
By too many hands.

One last look in the mirror

This is not just a morning ritual.

0 poetic mutterings: