Our hearts are drunk with beauty our eyes could never see.

December 2, 2013


“Our hearts are drunk with beauty; our eyes could never see.” – George W. Russell

It was about two years since we saw last and even though she was dark in complexion; her skin colour has in no way affected her beauty. She was in fact gorgeous, indeed an African Queen and nothing better to describe her.

Seeing her for the first time in those years was something that totally shocked and confused me. It took a long time for me to realize that the figure that stood in front of me was actually the Asabe I knew for more than ten years.

Now she’s white! Or yellow, is she?

My mouth continued to remain wide open, expressing how surprised I was, until when Rabi, a friend of mine, tapped my shoulder and said; “Fulani, with mouth open like this, you’ll swallow a fly.”

I spent a long time looking at Asabe from head to toe, analyzing the new creature she transformed into. I tried so hard to believe that it was her and that the light was not creating some illuminations.

She’s now fair in complexion, but one thing caught my attention; two skin colours in one body!

Were her legs amputated and replaced with those black legs? I asked myself while trying to come out of the state of shock I was in.

At this moment, I won’t blame you if you laugh because I did and she was crossed, just that she may not know the reason why I was laughing and couldn’t gather enough courage to ask.

If you are seeing her for the first time, you’ll think the tone on her upper part is perfect but what….! Her legs really needed to be reworked as the black dots couldn’t betray her old complexion, the signs were visible.

She has toned to a “Fanta face, Coca-Cola legs”, the old slang we used back then to tease people at the initial stage of bleaching their skin.

A few years back Asabe was so passionate about fair complexion, and that was her definition of beauty, but I never imagined she could go to this extent.

Asabe’s perception of fairness as beauty really affected her psychologically. Now it has lowered her self-esteem, making her think that she could only be beautiful when she’s fair.

She may be fair, but is she gorgeous?


British actress and fashion icon Audrey Hepburn once said; “the beauty of a woman is not in a facial mode, but the true beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul.”

Nowadays, in the name of beauty or fashion as the new trend suggests, women and even some men, go through all sorts of transformation ranging from changing their complexion, facial appearance, modifying their body structure, dressing in nudity, carrying crazy wigs or braids and all kinds of madness.

I was flipping over some pages of a magazine one day when I saw something disgusting. At first, I thought the woman that poses on one of the pages was actually a dummy as she was wearing next to nothing, but beneath the rags she wore, the ugly stretch marks on her abdomen explained that she is in fact human. I’ve never seen a model with so much abdominal fat like that.

Talking about facial makeups, yes a simple one is so fine and okay, but I sometimes wonder why some women put on a heavy one. I also wonder if they are actually in their senses when they do that, as they look so scary, so non-human, more like the witches we see in foreign movies, but hey… that’s the beauty to them, so don’t blame them too.

Yes, I am a fan of anything beautiful, and yes am a fan of fashion, but not a fan of the madness that is trending today.

I agree that beauty is indeed functional and we all crave for beauty and beautiful things, but the question is; what is beauty?

American essayist, lecturer, and poet Ralph Waldo Emerson said; “beauty is God’s handwriting”. On the other hand, Gabriela Mistral said; “beauty is the shadow of God on the universe”.

Scott Westerfeld gave a more comprehensive perception of what beauty is or should be. He was specific on the individual’s thoughts towards the concept of beauty, and he said; “the way you think, makes you beautiful.” So if you think you are beautiful, you really are.

While Scott emphasized individual thoughts, William Shakespeare views it from the perspective of an individual’s sight. His definition is; “Beauty is bought by judgment of the eye.” So whatever the eye defines as beauty, that’s it.

Perhaps reasons, why some people consider fairness, white or light as a symbol of beauty, could be proved in the definition given by Lebanese artist, poet, and writer Kahlil Gibran. He said; “Beauty is not in the face; beauty is a LIGHT in the heart.

I think Asabe belongs to the category of people that gave “light” so much emphasis to mean “light in complexion”.

Indeed looks matter but definitely not always in the ways you think. So whatever your definition of beauty is or should be, just put it at the back of your mind that you are indeed BEAUTIFUL.


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