SST9 Draft 1: Afrah Yafai

1 Jun

Hey guys, so my idea has shifted slightly. It’s inspired by a moment my younger sister had and what it was like for me being the older sister. I’ve written this to be performed by two people (speaker one is me, and speaker two is the voice of my sister). I’ve never really written anything like this before but I have ideas for performance/staging/tech. I’ll see how it goes.


Speaker 1:

The mask clings onto her skin and solidifies her features,

And she swore the jarring words didn’t torment her –

Speaker 2:

– They don’t

Speaker 1:

–  when I know they did.

And I understand first-hand how to plaster on a distraction.

And masks,

they do a good job of hiding smudged eyeliner, and dried mascara

But they suffocate laugh lines and convert them into indentations of worry,

sinking further into the pores like a titanic of hope.

I’ve been there.

Tiptoed along the borders of my personality because I was never sure of who I wanted to be.

And I can see how she battles with her conscience trying to find the most painless way of integrating herself into adulthood

and the carnival that follows.

Speaker 2:


“You’re so pretty and tall, you could be a model!”

“I wish I had your body.”

“Oh my gosh, you have beautiful hair.”


Speaker 1:

But every compliment was drenched in petrol,

So they exploded every time a fire breather came near,

But she cannot comprehend that they never intended warm words to scald her skin or drive scars into her chest

Where the inferno tongues of adolescence tore her open,

Peaked a closer look at a heart pumping life into a body that saw the word UGLY scribbled over the mirror every time…

Speaker 2:

…Every time, I stand a little closer to my reflection,

I swipe fingerprints on the glass, and rub my eyes until a kaleidoscope appears,

Waiting, always waiting, for the image to become distorted and it’s hard to decipher.

She used to say that bra size reflected grades,

So she could justify that being small was okay,

And they could keep their D’s and E’s…

Speaker 1:

…whilst I held onto those A’s

And I have to listen to her tell me that C cups are unacceptable,

Speaker 2:

And she doesn’t understand why I want to be bigger…

Speaker 1:

Like really?

But I know she fears walking too close by my side,

in case she is engulfed by my shadow

assembled when I have my moments in the sun.

Speaker 2:

And shadows are great for hiding,

But I can’t breathe when the shade devours my lungs.

But it’s better than my imperfections being up on display for my eager audience to enjoy.

Speaker 1:

But masks,

They don’t conceal the magic behind your eyelids,

Instead they highlight it.

Each framed with decorations that make the iris twinkle,

But stars don’t shine when the sky clings onto clouds.

Speaker 2:

And at fifteen,

Getting past acne, back stabbers and severe cases of the GCSE blues is priority

Speaker 1:

And no amount of advice will guard her from flashes that will soon come to haunt her.

I can only be there to hold her when shivers pierce her spine,

And to collect the segments of her spirit that roll down her cheeks in perpetual rainfall.

I’ll trap each drop in a mason jar,

and promise to show her that even roses can bloom from within the deepest roots of her anguish,

And I will tear off each petal until she swears that she believes me.

Speaker 2:

And I do,

but a ghost train occupies my heart.

Identity running off the tracks into thick clouds of fog,

And the echoes of laughter ricochet within,

But I can’t tell if they are laughing with me, or at me.

Speaker 1:          

I tell her,

some people wear masks to conceal betrayal, and twist a grimace into a smile that you swear you can trust.

But some only want to touch the surface,

graze the delicate skin with hands dipped in gold to make you feel like you are worth something,

when in their palms,

they clutch every ounce of magic that defined you.

And you will discover the people who will never admire your evolution from a lump of unsteady coal made up of insults, doubts and lack of self-love into a picture perfect jewel.

Speaker 2:

or appreciate the attempts to contort my soul to fit into a box that everyone tells me to climb into,

even if my bones shatter in the process.

Speaker 1:

They will bargain your spark for fun and justify their tricks as ‘banter’

But find the ones who will never fool you with their charm.

And it may well feel like an endless search.

Speaker 2:

I wear a mask for protection.

Speaker 1:

But a story exists in her eyes.

And I will be waiting for the day, she decides she no longer wants to hide.


One Response to “SST9 Draft 1: Afrah Yafai”

  1. MouthyPoets June 2, 2015 at 9:56 am #

    Hey afrah .this is a great opening only thing is I’m getting Abit confused who is your sister speaking too is it you or is she thinking ? Neal

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