my knees are pressed against yours under this oddly shaped table. it feels strangely intimate, the pulse of your skin against mine and i wonder if you can hear the way my heart sings for you. your smile is easy on your face and it makes my breath catch in my throat when the radiance sweeps me off my feet easily.
your eyes are round and panicked, wet the way puppies’ eyes are. your hand is flailing anxiously and your voice is going at hundred miles an hour, words tumbling one after another and it’s almost endearing the way the child in you is still alive. i brush my hand across yours and pull it towards me, and the look of trust in your face makes me feel like i could do this f o r e v e r.
i would hardly ever call myself a damsel in distress except when the walls of the world threaten to snare me in its razor sharp teeth. the way you come up to beside me makes me feel so relieved i could cry. for a moment i feel like i want to grab your hand in mine but the look you send my way is enough to blanket the anxiety rippling through my veins. i settle for walking a little closer to you.
maybe our hands don’t fit right but i feel like i am holding the world in my palm.
dedicated to every person who’s ever loved me. it means the world. thank you.
failing doesn’t get easier even after seventeen years. falling still hurts like fuck, the way the gravel rips my skin raw open and the first gush of blood still nips angrily across my tingling skin and my leg is still as numb as the first time i fell. the pain is still as acute when i come out of the hall with the sinking feeling of i’m going to fail. i already knew i was going to fail but this didn’t make the blank paper and swimming words any better. failing is still lump in my throat that makes swallowing the news so damn difficult. every day is a struggle when instagram feeds and twitter timelines are filled with someone’s else success. i want to be happy for you but your brilliance is a reminder of everything i want to be but will never achieve. i want to be pulled up into honey warm hugs and have a shoulder to cry into and a chest to nuzzle and i want a hand to stroke my matted hair and lips to whisper it will be fine i still love yous into the shell of my ear but it doesn’t happen. i go home to a microwaved muffin and i jump into bed and pull the covers tight over myself even if it is only two fifty in the afternoon. when i come to at seven i am disoriented and the dark sky outside is starless. dead the way i am, not a spark of light within sight. i have my dinner (microwaved again because i don’t trust my trembling fingers to light the gas and i know that my kerosene tears would start to burn if i lit up the stove) and the house is eerily silent. i am left alone with my thoughts so i jump back to bed and scroll through my phone aimlessly. i see my little prince and my heart aches for the way he will always be happy without me.
ping ping ping
1 whatsapp message
1 instagram dm
i ignore the whatsapp message even if it is from s, because i feel like i cannot face her today. my fingers slip into my ig dm and the words that come next draw all the breath out of my throat: at least tuesday is over, right? that’s what you wanted! my heart is pounding sixty miles an hour. you remembered, i want to say, you remembered. the tears are welling up and my heart suddenly feels better.
2 whatsapp messages
3 whatsapp messages
4,5,6 whatsapp messages
i slide open the text from a. it says i found something, venus and i am too tired to say much so i type a ?. the reply that comes is swift: a picture of finger heart with my name on it and i am going crazy because i find it oddly endearing. i laugh.
i open up s’s text and i read it and i cry because it’s been six months since i’ve felt anything. and i cry and cry and cry and cry and
i’m still crying today because
not poetry not prose just word vomit. it’s been what, half an hour and this track already means the world to me. at first i thought that this was going to be inspiration porn 101 you are great and good and loved so don’t be depressed! because when has depression ever meant anything except Easy Mental Health Topic Everyone Talks About But Doesn’t Actually Understand or diversity quota to act like we care for the mentally ill even when we make fucking ableist jokes every day. but i digress. i have been crying at my laptop screen for half an hour because this is something. idk. it’s almost two in the afternoon but i am tired and speechless. give it a listen. oh, and don’t forget the tissues.
i think i am depressed, i whisper, as if speaking louder will make it come t r u e. i don’t want to be depressed, not when it means that i have the urge to cry over everything or if it means that i worry a hole in my lip even when i am too apathetic to do anything on most days.
they say that depression is a war. if the soviet union could make a comeback against the winning blitzkrieg tactics of germany, who is to say that my soul will never be free of depression? winning the war is of no use. some 70 years ago, my people were free from the shackles of colonialism. today i am still haunted by colonialism, and i watch the way colonialism still bounds this great continent to the rock bottom and it hurts to see my people struggle. we need no chains to make slaves of people.
victory is only ever sweet once. the bitter aftertaste never really leaves.
have you really won?
My ancestors were immigrants.
I am here today only because my great grandparents sailed across the great Asian continent. Caught in the storm of the civil war, they left China for a better life. I never met my great grandparents but i know that they are the bravest people to have walked this earth. To risk your life for a fresh start and weather the perilous journey to Singapore takes a fucking lot of courage.
Immigrants are as human as you are. All we ever wanted was somewhere to call home. Is that really too much to ask for?
Today Donald Trump announced that he is ending the DACA. This vicious and conscious decision to rip apart the lives of #Dreamers is an act of systematic racism. But the fight to #DefendDACA is not over. There are so many things to be done.
Dreamers are a vital force in the American economy but their value is beyond just being workers. They are humans the way you and I are. We fight for the Dreamers not solely to save the American economy. We fight for them because we are humans and because the decision to end DACA is an act of child abuse. If you care about the lives of these young immigrants, here is what you can do to help.
- Text Resist to 50409. If you’re not American, all you need in a Facebook account to text Resistbot on Messenger.
- Sign the petition to Resist over here.
- Tweet the AGs who are pressuring the government to end DACA. info is here. alternatively, see this template of things to tweet.
- Make a service call to you senators. see more here.
- Fund the DACA support here. You can also donate to Resistbot.
- Educate yourself. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
- Keep fighting. Tweet #DefendDACA. it doesn’t hurt.
These are 800 000 lives at stake. Please, if you are human, then fight for the Dreamers. They deserve to keep their legal status in the only place they know best. Home.
As a descendant of immigrants, I am begging all of you to help us in this fight. So much of the world has been made possible by immigrants. We are here to help and not to harm. All we ever wanted was somewhere to call home.
Is that really too much to ask for?
THIS, they whisper, is Exhibit A:
- my eyes are glossy from staring at the 50k word document on my laptop, my homework shoved aside but not forgotten. how could i ever forget what killed me? everything that kills me makes me wish i was dead.
- a tear slips out of my eyes as i cook my own dinner. there aren’t any onions on the chop board, just my determination. the microwave timer has never turned slower.
- i am breathing so fucking hard even as my mum is screaming for me to wash the dishes and my hand is a fucking aspen leaf as it trembles but why can’t i die?
- i sleep till twelve on saturdays. i reply 7am messages on whatsapp with a sflr. then i fall back to bed, my eyes shut. the ceiling is still as plain as it was when i was eleven.
- i don’t fuck with racism or ableism the way my classmates do. the teachers smile at them more anyway.
- maybe we should wait till we graduate. so we can focus on our studies. your message flashes through my mind and laughter is bitter on my tongue when i realize that you’re better off without me. sometimes i wish i could hold your hand, but i remember you have your eyes on a girl who isn’t me. am i selfish for wanting you to myself even when we agreed to see how it worked out?
- i was never worth it.
- every romantic encounter was always met with silence. it still kills me to think that i longed for a break up over whatsapp. maybe this is what commitment issues look like.
- i open the fridge every day when i come back home, even if i know mum hasn’t done the grocery shopping.
- i haven’t felt happy in two and a half years.