Beyond the Surface

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Words: Zein Al-Maha Oweis she/her

Artwork: Monica Tate

Colours have always been a confusing matter

One by one they seep into one another

What is meant to be is not what it seems

Confusion always takes flight

Beyond the surface

Brown is purple, purple is brown

This is what triggered the start of my journey

Into the rabbit hole of colour-blindness

Pink and orange starks confusion

Is it a flower blooming from the Earth’s core? 

Or is it the smell of an orange being peeled on a hot summer’s day

Whereas gold and silver unite as one

Meshing shadows of the moon and sparkles of the stars

Blue and black combined together

Enter a fashion disaster of denim and leather

White and yellow are crystals

Like a glass window you walk into blindsided by sunshine

While patterns overwhelm specks of vision

Like an endless maze of circles and chequered boxes

However, with time, you learn to tame the confusion

You begin to see colours in a different light

Through memory, smell, touch, and sometimes taste

Take red for example,

Red has many meanings

Yet to me

Red is one of the only colours I see

It gives me strength

Feelings of happiness and confidence

Radiate from thy colour

Purple and brown

Two colours

Opposites on the spectrum

Yet, thick as thieves

Brown tastes like chocolate

Melting on the tip of my tongue

Purple smells like lavender

Memories of my grandmother surface

White and yellow

Paper and sun

Smooth and warm

Light and bright

While one is close on earth

The other lightyears away

Blue and black

Calm and chaotic

While one is soothing

The other is troubling

Water running over your body

Crows cawing, death is near

Gold and silver

Always aloof

Wondering whether my watch

Was yellow or white

Or whether the shiny shimmers

Were silver or gold

The only thing that helped

Were the colours of my braces

However, gone, never forgotten

In the end, everyone sees colours

In their own ways

They are never black and white

Colours are a maze

Everyone adventures through this maze

In their own way

Mine is a maze

A colour scheme

One I have created from scratch

A painting that showcases

The way I navigate my life

A world of colours

Meshed together

Hugging one another

Quite a world I have created

Filled with colours that I can

And cannot see

However, not everything is

As it seems

Beyond the surface


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