yes, you. no, not you. their eyes look past me. past me? no, through me. this invisible girl. head down, do your work walk, head down down, down don’t look up meet their eyes they see nothing. wear your education as camouflage hallways, desks, chairs head down. down, down. brown, transparent skin don’t look up. flat nose don’t look up. small eyes don’t look up. fat girl don’t look up. look at your toes see the words on the floor? rising. feel it rising up the strength of your calves wrap themselves around your thighs gain speed on your cunt skip hop jump to your belly your words fueled by anger up. up. look up as they travel to the base of your throat speak. speak up. look up. scream. Dec 7
Recall a time when you did something to get noticed
carolwwu asked: Hi, just wondering as a 1.5 myself, what key moments in your life do you think would define you as a 1.5g that is unique from your peers? Thanks :)
I should preface by saying that I got the term 1.5 from an academic paper and is not something that I actively identify as. It makes it seem like we can quantify these experiences which isn’t really true.
Now, onto your question… I don’t know if these moments are unique but they’re certainly key in my understanding of my own identity. Also these aren’t in any sort of order and there’s so much more that I can write…
1) Attending foodshares with Filipinos who immigrated to Canada past their pre-teen years and feeling realizing that I didn’t have the language or cultural understanding of the Philippines that they did.
2) In my 4th year of uni, I started thinking about this feeling I’ve always had of not fitting in in my mostly white university. Not just because of my race but I didn’t understand most of the experiences of the white friends I had because none of them were immigrants.
3) Listening to friends who were Native and hearing from Native scholars about language, history, culture being stolen and their own resistance to it, made me start to question what history I knew of the Philippines and its colonization. Been trying to trace my roots/ancestry ever since.
4) Watching videos of poets like Kelly Tsai or Yellow Rage and feeling their words so hard!!! And being so amazed that these Asian-American poets can articulate how I’d been feeling.
That’s all I can really think of now. I don’t know if that actually answered your question!
"Some say a little girl fell into the lake that night and nobody’s seen her since.
Some say it was the black sky she ran to, a girl in love with midnight.
Some say if only.
Some say the lake, lonely and hungry, set a trap for winged creatures and the little girl was too lovely for her own good.
Some say they’ve sighted a little figurine, pale as a shirt washed too many times, drifting in lonely places.
Some say when little girls pass, they transform into useful things like lanterns greeting the weary farmers enticed by the rippling lake.
Some say there are no such things.
Some say the lake digests all her daughters and births fireflies.
No one says, I will miss her my whole-long life. I will carve a door in my dream, an entrance that belongs only to her so I can tell her again and again how I wish we never fought over the stars the night she fell out of my life."
- Some Say by Ching-In Chen in
The Heart’s Traffic Aug 25
Something happened to me when you left. Not all at once. But little by little throughout this year. Something happened to me. I started to forget. I forgot the way you looked. I forgot the way you looked past the two-dimensional photos that I hold in my hands. I forgot the way your waist met your hips and how your knees became your calves. I forgot how your hair feels and the sound your laugh made. I started to forget how your shoes squeaked. Or what your jacket smells like after being out in the rain. I can’t remember how the pen moved when you wrote.
But I remember. I remember the sound of her voice when she told me you were gone. I remember riding in the passenger seat, in the dead of night, just to get to where you were. I remember the earth playing tricks. Stealing oxygen from my lungs when I needed it the most. I remember police officers and a chocolate lab. I remember the anger. I think most I remember the anger.
They say you stacked books to reach the proper height. Easy to kick off if it was high enough. Found behind a locked door. That’s the final picture they gave me. Some say they could never look at doors the same way again. The nightmares came too close when they saw the back of closed doors, a ghost of guilt too difficult to accept. But I can never look at books the same way. I blame them for their height. For their poetry. For their inability to speak. Because they were there. They should have said something to you. With all the words in their capacity they remained silent.
So, I’ve started to forget. I’ve forgotten what your voice sounds like over the telephone. I’ve forgotten how to walk around town without thinking of you. I’ve forgotten how to stop worrying about who will be next. And mostly, I’ve forgotten how books felt, how they felt before you were gone. What did they look like when they didn’t hold the memory of you?