Based off the poem ‘Pretty Ugly’ by Abdullah Shoaib

My melanin is ugly

So don’t try to convince me 

My ancestors were strong and beautiful

Because at the end of the day

I wish I matched the “skin coloured” crayons

And I’m not going to tell myself

There is beauty inside this skin of mine

I will tell you the honest truth 

That it is ugly, weird, and scares my classmates

And no matter how much you try to make me believe

My people deserve love

I don’t agree.

That is what society tells me-

That I am not good enough to be loved

And sure, some people say 

Dark skin is beautiful too

But when I see myself I think

Society hates the way I look

My mother once told me

That the white man will never like us

Therefore I don’t believe

Racism can be fought against 

If we try and try

Things will only get worse

But if we don’t try

We can relax and accept the way things are

Can melanin ever be respected too?

Is my melanin as ugly as colourism’s view?

Now, read it backwards.