Submissions open for Wingword Poetry Prize 2020

I'm a Rainbow

Sukhmani Kaur

At ten years old, I learnt what the colors of the rainbow were
At twenty, I know what they mean

Violets were the blossoms she gave me at my window.
I love you, she said. But know can know.

Indigo was the ink that stained on days bleak. Pages and pages of wondering if I was a freak.

Blue were the bruises on me when mother read my diary.
All I could do was cry and say sorry.

Green were the parks where she could hold his hand and he could hers. But if I did it, there were murmurs.

Yellow were the sticky notes left by them to show. I will go to hell. That I must know.

Orange was the flame they used so I could be treated. They were sure it was the cure needed.

Red was the fire of anger and hate in me.
Because my heart was deep in misery

At ten years old I learnt what the colors of the rainbow were.
At twenty, I knew that this is what they mean

Violets are the secrets to keep
Indigo is sadness when I weep

Blue is the punishment given to me
Green is jealousy for how free they could be

Yellow is nothing but shame that I gain
And orange and Red were mere synonyms for pain.


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