Living Confidently With Vitiligo

When I was ten,
white depigmented patches hit
my tropically tanned skin,
Doctors diagnosed it as Vitiligo –
A disorder whose causes and treatments
were still obscure
but it was the ongoing subject
of medical research for sure

Though I was prescribed medicines
that could safeguard the remaining melanin
and my condition didn’t harm anybody else
the society gripped my surroundings
in its claws cruelly,
Many thought my condition to be ugly and scary,
Others called my life a disgrace to feminine beauty
They deliberately at all cost shunned my company

But determined was I not to bow
at the ignorant arrows of injustice,
I kept on walking fearlessly
amidst the serene greenery,
I looked up at the blue sky
and could feel God hugging me securely,
I listened to the musicality of the waves
and as they touched my bare feet they whispered
“ True beauty lies in the immortal soul,
Physical beauty tarnishes,
It never embraces eternity.”

Thus, for years, Nature has remained
my true companion,
Its divine solitude
has taught me to be emotionally independent,
It has taught me
to be myself,
It has given me my own voice –
my voice flowing in Poetry

I have discovered my true self,
I have learnt to live,
live freely, with no psychological blocks or complexes
live wisely by being immune to the negative mentality
live confidently with my disorder –
the non-segmental Vitiligo.

Vatsala Radhakeesoon is an author of various poetry books and an experimental abstract artist from Mauritius. She writes poetry in English, French, Mauritian Kroel and Hindu, and she has been selected as one of the poets for Guidi Gozzano Poetry contest from 2016 to 2020. She is a representative of Immagine and Poesia, an Italy-based literary movement uniting artists and poets’ works, and is one of the interview editors of the bi-annual online journal, Asian Signature. She lives in Mauritius where she works as a literary translator. Some of her books are available on her Amazon author page. Read other articles by Vatsala.