The Bay of Bengal crashed behind her and she didn’t even notice.

Even to a little girl, glorious things can lose their entrancing power

under the dull weight of daily life.

Her eyes were the shade of fertile soil, rich and endless with potential life and hope

and her hair held the wind and salt from the sea.

She was Beauty.

She pressed her fingers together and touched them to her lips, the sign for hunger.

Her eyes held back a smile for me, the stranger in her land.

Windswept, weathered poverty circled her bare feet and ruffled her dress

while she walked the soft and dirty sand of Marina Beach.

I held her in my memory, loved her, and watched her turn away–

looking for the next stranger,

as wave after defeated wave fell upon the sand.

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