smiling Indian Cute Little Girl
Road to a different look
by Vijaya Gowrisankar

The gentle, soft voice of my grandma
Sharing stories of my mother and aunts
Their lovely tresses, black and thick
Tied in plaits, as tradition expects
Swaying to the gentle winds as they walked
Across the lush fields, to go to school…

Watching the scissors at play in a tailor’s shop
As she cut away the cloth with a snip-snip sound
As I waited for the bus to pick me up for school
A daily fascination at the sound and power
That the scissors held over the colorful cloths
Challenged my curiosity and imagination, till one fine day

When my mother came home from work that evening
She found the scissors on the floor with a trail of hair
From the hall, to the kitchen, to the bedroom floor
My hair was cut at any angle that my hands found fit
In an attempt to make the perfect plait with ribbons, using scissors
I remember my mother’s stunned silence instead of praise

Every barber in the area was tested for suggestions to salvage my hair
My mother’s disappointment when they shook their heads in awe
Their endless looks of disbelief, the barrage of questions they asked
Till finally…My friends saw me sporting a boy cut the next day at school
My mirror as friend, I stood for ages, familiarizing my new look
That became my identity for the coming years, as a result of this           experiment

PHOTO: “Smiling girl, India” by V.R. Murralinath, used by permission.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: From class 1 to 4, I sported short hair due to my need for adventure and attempts to mix two ideas to get interesting results. There are many such stories, this being one of them.


Vijaya Gowrisankar
 released her second book of poems Reflect in December 2015. Her first book, Inspire, published in December 2014, reached the bestseller status. She was announced as one of the winners of Inspire by Gandhi competition, organized by Sampad, a UK organization. She has been announced as the Winner of AZsacra International Poetry Award (Dec. 2015). Her submissions have been published in Forwardian, Triadae Magazine, iWrite India, Taj Mahal Review, along with Silver Birch Press.