Dark blue night

In these dark blue hours of night

We lie in a gentle ball of quiet

I listen to you breathe

Your skin glows moon-white

Still as a cold lake

Your arm – a tree root – finds its home on my skin

In my skin

My heart is tied to the end of a shoestring

You are the shoe

It’s these perfect hours

The night’s melodies all but faint

We are two

And none else

That I wish would stretch and curl

A perfect 8

Unending

Curse

If I could claw out of my flesh

Shed my skin

Leave my ribcage behind

This prison assigned

Without a question asked

If I could be free

Of these eyes, this nose,

These cheeks, this mouth

This hurricane mind

This lava chest

There’s nothing I hate more

Than this nodding, plodding non-choice

I did not ask to be born

And if you will not let me fly

Then

Let me die

#GrowingUpAsian

Maybe it’s in the slant of my eyes

My skin the colour of rain-soaked soil

That hides a bruise so well

Maybe it’s in my cheekbones

Two mountains tall round balls

That make good targets so

Maybe it’s in my thick black hair

That seems to absorb your stares

Your curious glares, your poison

Maybe it’s in my size

That makes you feel more wise

To teach me my history

Maybe it’s in my lips

Taught to stay small, sealed

As the cut heals

Designed for biting stopping

Words from pouring out

Pouring out

When you say

I’ve got yellow fever How much did she cost You speak good English You’re only here because you earn more here than Thailand Do you send money back home Tight Asian school girls Go back to China Town I love Asian girls Oh I know Thailand it’s lady boys and prostitutes Do you ride elephants to school You’re so short and cute Fucking immigrants no but you’re the good kind Can you hook me up with some of your Asian friends You should be grateful my country lets you stay here Do you eat dogs You’re Thai do you speak Taiwanese Love you long time

Maybe

But maybe it’s in my blood my bones

That this earth is my home my throne

And after your poison your cut your bruise your lies

My eyes are wide and my chin kept high

I will not roll over and die

I will not roll over and die

A tribute to Jan

He came to me,

suddenly, unapologetically,

said, ‘You’re mine.’

There was no courting,

no flirtatious glances

across the room.

Sounds were sucked

out of the world,

colours dimmed.

.

My insides wept,

pleaded and begged,

‘Not me. Why not

the next girl in

the next room,

the redhead down

the hall? Why me?’

.

But I looked in his

blackhole eyes,

stared into his

sunstorm grin,

said, ‘Fuck off.’

He only smiled,

terrifyingly,

charmingly.

.

The first thing

he took

was my strength.

A step out of bed,

the floor pulled out

from under,

an endless fall,

time seemed to linger

to watch me fall.

I broke a hip.

.

The next

he took

was my hair.

Locks like

wavy autumn leaves

littered the bathtub

the pillowcase

the kitchen floor.

.

Then

he took

my time.

Brunches with my

daughters, dinners

with my lover,

afternoons in the golden sun,

Christmases, weddings,

birthdays.

.

He then became bold.

Moved on

to my plans, my hopes,

my appetite

for flavours and for life,

my dreams

became shattered

reflections, harvested

through fragmented

hours of the night,

my smile,

damn how I missed my smile.

.

But for all that he took,

he knew I wasn’t his,

not yet,

not truly,

he knew I wasn’t his

until I decided so,

and I hadn’t decided so,

until I finally decided so.

Until I finally

took his hand

and let go of my lover’s,

my daughters’, my life’s.

.

But I sure as hell made him wait.

One dark night

Her face is perfection

Imprinted on my eyelids when all I want is darkness

Her face is poison

And thorns that I drink and lie on again, again, again

Her face is that ghost

That hovers when I look in the mirror

My face

Then her face

What I could have been

But am not

Her face is hatred

A ball of fire

Heat that expands

Rises from the inside

My gut burns with this hate

It fills my throat, my head

I slap, I slap

This face that I hate

(My ears ring)

It’s not that I want hers instead

I just hate

Purely

I will burst with this hate

I will kill with this hate

I hold, I hold

I slap, I slap

Until, finally, it flows

The drips start off slow

But it flows in red and white

The fight is no more

I let my hate flow

I help my hate flow

Furiosa Fever

furiosa

So. I love Mad Max: Fury Road.

Or more precisely I love Imperator Furiosa.

The one-armed, kickass goddess.

For the first time in my life, I leave the movie theatre feeling empowered.

Empowered by an action movie!

And I wonder, is this what I’ve been missing out on?

Are men constantly empowered by action movies with strong male leads (aka 99% of all action movies)?

Is this how it feels to be a man?

So I do my research. I ask my male companion the question.

To my surprise, he says no.

No. Because it’s normal. He’s used to it.

So that’s when it hits me.

Could it be?

That the privileged are unable to feel empowered?

Because they are already powered. Naturally. All the fucking time.

Maybe.

Anyway. I love Imperator Furiosa so much I drew her.

Enjoy.

Immigrants

Immigrants.

Three syllables that divide.

Us. Them.

First. Second.

Human. Less so.

Immigrants.

Faceless, hooded demons crossing invisible lines at the mid of night.

One day we’re just us. The next: Us. Them.

Ancient myth worshippers, lusting for pure blood. Ours. Angry. Angry. Greedy. Swooping down like an army of crows.

One minute we’re just us. The next: Us. Them.

Seeping like ink, silent, unseen, leeching, thieving. Starving rats in our sewage system.

One night we’re just us. Morning: Us. Them.

Immigrants.

Immigrants.

They are not a child. Beaten. Raped. Running for her life.

They are not a mother. Maths teacher. PhD.

They are not a lover. Full of music. Colours. Plans.

They are not a person. A house in the country. Full of books. Smells of spiced beauties. Terrible singer. Part-time astronomer. Full-time heart broken.

They aren’t.

They can’t be.

How else can we say:

Immigrants.

Immigrants.

One day we’re us. Them.

The next:

We’re just us.