Have you forgotten me?

child-abuse1 (1)

By Meera Badmanaban

Have you forgotten me?
I am the boy whose legs turned black.
You saw my amputated legs; didn’t you?
The rubber hose was his form of attack.
I prayed hard for the torture to stop;
But he still continued; and so I died.

Have you forgotten me ?
I am the girl who was raped by granddad.
You read the papers; didn’t you ?
He loved me, he said; his face all sad;
But what he did to me hurt real bad.
I screamed; “Atok ! Jangan ! Tolong ! ”
But he carried on; and so I died.

Have you forgotten me ?
I am the boy who fell asleep in the van.
You heard the story; right ?
The driver forgot me right at the back,
My unconscious body limp and slack;
He realised too late; and so I died.

Have you forgotten me ?
I am the girl at the back of the class.
Did you know they threw acid on me?
I just could not take it anymore;
To another world I had to go.
I hung on a rope; and so I died.

Have you forgotten me?
I am the boy who drank poison;
You don’t believe the gang forced me?
They said they would kill my sister;
Slash with a parang my brother;
Poured it down my throat; and so I died.

Have you forgotten me ?
I am the girl they found in the gym bag.
All tied up; neatly; don’t you remember?
Like a sandwich, my holes were stuffed,
With a brinjal and a cucumber; buffed.
I was only eight; and so I died.

Have you forgotten me ?
I am the girl made famous on Facebook.
“Fat Ugly Bitch” – a friend called me that?
“Cheap Whore”; and a whole lot more.
I slashed my wrists and posted the gore.
The blood spurted and spewed; and so I died.

Have you forgotten me ?
I am the boy in the plastic container.
The triple murder case, do you recall?
Thrown like garbage, with my sister;
I shouted “Come; arrest my mother!”
But you came too late; and so I died.

Have you forgotten me ?
My ghost – do you not see?
While my bones are rotting;
You just sit; doing nothing.
There are others out there;
All around you; everywhere;
Beaten; bullied; tortured;
Neglected; abused; raped;
Why do you turn a blind eye?
While our children slowly die?

Meera Badmanaban is an FMT reader.

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