A few weeks ago, my school’s Latino Heritage Club sent out an email inviting students to perform in the next Spoken Word Night, which would be on the topic of social justice. For the past year I’ve contemplated performing in one, but I’ve never had the courage to actually do it. As I read through the email, however I started to seriously consider performing, and when they said the topic was social justice, it cinched the deal. For better or for worse, I was in! And I immediately knew that I needed to write my piece for the three little girls I met in a village in Nepal. So without further ado, here’s the written version of my spoken word piece.
Three Little Girls
made of nothing more than stones and mud
unable to withstand the quaking that occurred.
Young children with ripped pants
climb the trees like mischievous little monkeys
while women work the water spigot.
Most schoolchildren have already marched down the mountain
in their light blue uniforms
but three young girls linger.
They’re 8, 10, 12 at the most.
Slender bodies, undernourished.
Bright undereducated minds.
Underappreciated beautiful souls.
The epitome of vulnerable.
10,000 girls are shuffled across the porous border between Nepal and India,
And you could be 1 in 10,000.
Your parents are desperate.
The vistas may be stunning
but you can’t eat the view.
“See that man over there?
He’s a friend of your uncle, and he says he can give you a job in India.
Be a good girl and go with him.
You may be a bit young to work,
but at least you’ll have food in your belly.”
It’s a way out,
no wait, it’s a trap!
10,000 girls per year?
That’s nearly 30 a day!
Numbers don’t have faces.
But girls do.
And I can’t seem to erase your face from my mind.
So little sisters, please listen.
Your body is not a commodity.
That man with the job in India
is a fake.
The stranger who wants to marry you,
he’s a sham.
To the pimp
you’re just property. And if you die,
it’s nothing more than a bad day on the job.
They will measure your value
by what your body can do for a man.
And in selling your body,
they’re stealing your soul.
But you were not made to be bought and sold
used and abused.
And at the end of the day,
money can’t buy happiness,
and it shouldn’t be able to buy you either.