The double-edged s word is staring you in the face.
A simple word. Two syllables, six letters, all making your mind go into overdrive,
Mere pixels, dancing on the screen, teasing you, enticingly singing their siren song.
Weeks spent, compressing, forcing
Your whole existence, your experiences, your LIFE
Into one little document
Skimmed briefly, then tossed aside
The submit button winks, seducing your mouse, drawing the cursor ever closer.
Click and commit. Click and you’re free.
Your mind mulls over the word, turning it over in your head,
Your finger hovers over the mouse, hesitating, fearful of what will come next.
Your life depends on it.
One little word,
A minuscule movement of the finger,
A signal of your submission
To the whim of the faceless men and women,
Waiting, in a featureless room, to judge you.
wicked playwright seething forth
evanescent festivals, processions of the sky.
he extends his arm as if to seize the falling sun
spilling out across a million lands.
with the world his witness,
he clears his throat as if to speak.
the mist stirs, the air shifts
to his resounding cry of love and longing–
swept up by the sounds of the sea, the breath of the stars
and the inhalations of his heart.
- Stephen Suen
robed in lamplight
from rusting steel clothes-hangers
and black lairs
there are cockroaches at your feet.
- Jennifer Hui
I live in a house. The house has a beautiful door, they open it everyday when they go in and out, my parents told me it was not needed for me, and I had to stay in. Sometimes… when I look at the world outside, I see beautiful people, with beautiful hands, I lean my head against the window and listen to their voices, but it never reaches my ears… I never listened to nothing other than my mother’s squeaky voice and my father’s harsh tone.
I live in a house. The window shows me nothing but the skies, the endless skies that stretch endlessly to the void that we called space. I reach with my hands and try touching the skies and I dream about flying in those endless skies, but my wings were clipped and I was an earth-bound creature, like my mom and dad. But they had a car.
Sometimes I dream, I dream about coloring the skies, using my magnificent paintbrush I would fill it with my desires… I would flush the skies with my imagination, of the people outside and the birds that flew, a world where I could trap myself in. I dream a lot.
Why do I stay in the house? Why do I stay in this cage? I never asked myself that question until I was seventeen (or so my parents said), I just asked, it didn’t harm anyone.
My parents were not jailors, they were my nurses. They took care of me and made sure I was me - that was me the day before. I sometimes looked at my parents with love, and they would comment on my huge eyes- telling me it was disturbing. Disturbing… It was a new word at that time and I thought it categorized within the realms of ‘loving, caring, and pure joy’ and continued to look at them with my wide eyes whenever I felt ‘disturbing’.
There was someone else who came through the door, Uncle Jack; he came once a month to visit my mother to, according to my uncle, ‘check on businesses.’ I only remember him as being really, really fat; so fat that he took five minutes to consider using the front door, which was narrower, or the garage; to enter our house. I never liked my uncle because he eyed me with really ‘disturbing’ eyes all the time, I wondered why he always looked at me like that; big, pig-eyed, and full of curiosity. He told me once, “Look, out there I’m a pig, but in here: I’m better than all of you combined” and then added “Look, I’m god, you’re the pig, and pigs feed on god’s shit.” He used to laugh a lot, but he didn’t come back again after he said that.
There were no locks on the door, because my parents knew I would never step outside, I didn’t want to, because I was scared. I was scared that people would start looking at me and talk like Uncle Jack, I was afraid that they would comment on my closeness to the earth- where I still laid my head to rest on…
- John (Yoon Hwan) Kim
Where the stars will lie watching,
I prepare for my greatest performance yet,
Sinning man’s most sinful sin,
Take your seats, it’s now sunset.
Under the darkness of the moon,
The final curtain finally drops,
And as the Sun comes up for noon,
Regardless, the world spins madly on-
- Ho Jae Choi
I am pretending to drown.
I am looking for mermaids,
For their flesh is succulent
And filled with wisdom.
They are horrible creatures,
Shimmering things with blonde flaxen hair
And hefty bosoms,
They giggle and swim in circles around me,
They want to devour my flesh and bone,
I know it.
But I am ready for them,
I have a net.
- Kelly Lo
The soothsayer crooned his wicked tune–
a dirge for the dead and the dying.
In violent throes he read the bones;
none could escape his scrying.
In murmurs of smoke the old man spoke,
of futures past and memories at hand,
of dusk, dawn, and empires long gone–
triumph of the skies and lay of the land.
He told us of men, ‘til now from then:
about their each and every endeavor.
Through each of his scars (as old as the stars)
spilled forth the weight of forever.
Lamenting the world and sanity unfurled
with sorrow, he concluded the séance.
Visions once nigh cleared from his eyes,
burden’d by the weariness of eons.
- Stephen Suen