My father’s death was what Mr. Vu would call an untimely death. If, at some point during the uneventful fifty years of his life, my father had ever ventured a … Continue reading Threadbare
Dusk was breaking. As the sun fell very slowly, its red light dripped on my hand, soaking my dirty fingernails with its brilliant crimson. I hid my hands in my … Continue reading A Murderer’s Afternoon
There’s nothing like walking down the streets of San Francisco, on a cold morning, when the sodden clouds cluster just enough to shade the sad lives curled up in street … Continue reading A Snippet of a Forgettable Life
You’re really just sitting there doing nothing, except that your mind won’t let you alone and once it gets its way nothing stays the same. Everything starts to go wrong, and even though you’re just sitting there you see your whole world collapses as the intoxicating thoughts kick in, doubting everything there is to doubt. On the train you have anxiety every single minute thinking that you’re going inbound instead of outbound, and when you get off you start to doubt if indeed you’re supposed to go outbound in the first place, because after a year of everyday commute you still can’t trust yourself. Skeptics like you love to learn, because knowing makes you feel at peace. That is, if you really know peace, because what if your peace is an illusion from what is really self-indulgence, pleasure that is temporary and eventually dies out; what if all that you do and everything that you are is a phase and that they were right; what if you love just to make you feel better about yourself; what if that is the way he loves you? You would suddenly realize something, which you would always always regret realizing, that when you look yourself in the eye you see nothing. You don’t see who you are looking into the mirror because that is something you haven’t found, because every time you try to find it you find another reason to give up. You see all these doubts instead and nothing that you know, because perhaps that nothing is how much you really know. You’ll find out that you’re actually okay with not knowing, it’s all the lies that you’re sick of. Political propaganda, congratulations, advertisements, “Everything will be okay”s,… these things that keep telling you you must not believe, as if you don’t already have that problem. And then comes religion. You find religious disciples the most annoying creatures because they can believe, because deep down you envy that ability. They have life easy. Their life follows a pattern that they know, they have reasons for everything that happens and it’s enough that it’s true for them because reality is a relative concept. A skeptic like you can’t have it that way because you assign meaning to things and you strive to explain life your way, and it’s hard. It’s hard figuring things out on your own because you can’t trust anyone else to. It’s hard because more often than not you don’t have an answer. It sure is hard, but believe me one last time when I say that in the end you’ll have it best. Believe, skeptic though you are, that all this thinking amounts to something significant, something that doesn’t have to be an answer. A cynic like you sees the world as the mess that it is, a multifaceted reality, a dark, bottomless hole squirming with hands groping blindly for answers. You see the truth of the future, the only truth: we can see it-our future-right ahead of us, through the immaculate lucidity of our vision-a vast, radiant, impenetrable blankness. Nothing is known in its entirety; all is bound in transcendental complexities, entangled in both the good and the bad. You see the sinful in the luminescent, the benevolent in the perverse. All expectation is nonsense, as is all devotion in any truth, any zealous faith. Don’t long for simplicity or faith, for these are things meant to be shattered. We tire ourselves because reality bothers us, as it’s supposed to, and we keep on grinding our beliefs because we are strong enough to face what we see, and wise enough to know what lies beyond. We refuse to believe what’s given because we choose to transcend it, because the world is worth doubting and we are meant to amend its crooked, shadowed facets. Believe, skeptic though you are, that one day there will be a truth, concrete and simple, sweeping and transparent, that has its proud history in you.
Insecurity is a cycle. Remember that thing you read on Tumblr about how you have to love yourself before anyone else could? That’s bullshit, written by people who were born and raised confident, who know nothing about what self-worth is to someone who doesn’t even trust or even listen to what she herself has to say. How do you tell an insecure person—who speaks quietly, deaf inside to her own voice, whose own breath sounds too loud and whose limbs seem so redundant they might as well be someone else’s, whose own presence bothers her to the point that she is in denial all her life—how do you tell this person to love herself? She would begin to love herself if ever love began with doubt and isolation, of and from her own body, a detachment from a Self lost somewhere along the way. She would begin to love herself if only she could convince herself that love starts from the heart and not the eyes. Every time she tries the cycle repeats itself all over again.
In a way the child slapped the nanny out of the house. No wonder there wasn’t a trace of her, not a single sweaty footprint or her tired shadow, lost … Continue reading Our Way Out
The sunken emptiness between your raspy breath and her broken steps over the vast fields of the unknown you’ve known all your life. Pumped with dust her heart wanders farther … Continue reading Lotus Seed