Thankful (Even Though Thanksgiving’s Over)

Every once in a while I experience these jolting moments. They go something along the lines of this: I’m living my day-to-day, sitting in a classroom, eating a meal, hugging a loved one, scrolling through my phone – and suddenly it hits me: this is my day-to-day life. Like how crazy is it that here I am living this beautiful, fulfilling existence on a floating rock in the universe? How crazy is it that this has become so normal to me that I don’t even stop to look around and simply appreciate the sheer brilliance of it all?

PC: https://free4kwallpapers.com/uploads/originals/2015/05/26/small-earth-view-from-space.jpg

Aside from the fact that life and humans exist (which is mind-boggling in and of itself), it strikes me that amidst it all, here I am. And I really am so lucky. I’m privileged enough to go to an incredible private school and receive a top-tier education when so many girls my age never even have the opportunity. I can afford to have enough to eat, and more so, nourishing and healthy food, where others don’t. I am fortunate enough to have people in my life who hug, love, and support me (and vice-versa) when many are alone in the world. I’m able to own a phone and access a wide range of technology when this is a luxury for millions.

I take all this for granted. But then, there are these shocks to my system. It’s the same feeling as vertigo at the top of a mountain or a skyscraper: everything zooms out, the fresh perspective leaving me elated and dizzy.

I’m sorry if this sounds like hippy bullshit but it is all sincere. I’m truly so grateful.

Poetry Pt. 4

dear [me],

i love the freckles that dapple your collarbone,

your double-jointed bent-backward elbows

i love the scar under your chin

and your dark unruly eyebrows

i love the blister you wear on your ring finger from holding a pencil wrong

i love your frizzy hair on rainy days

your voice cracks in the chorus of our song

i love how you speak to yourself when no one’s around

how you stumble over words when people are

i love how you sit slouched over at the table

and only ever play taylor swift in the car

i love the way your nose wrinkles when you laugh at your own jokes

but you loving yourself

is the thing i love most.

yours truly,

mine forever,

lulabean.

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i put salt on watermelon

to make it taste sweeter.

i wonder if all these tears

will one day make my happiness taste sweeter too.

starlight

the brightest stars are the closest to burning out.

maybe they already are

but you’re too far from them to know it.

PC: https://i.pinimg.com/564x/54/50/5d/54505ddc465e76fb4dd4797bf971faff.jpg

a curious sensation

they shouldn’t call it falling in love. 

i feel like i’m floating.

the falling part comes later

and some might call it heartbreak.

i hold my poems like a mirror

i read my handwritten stanzas back to myself

and i’ve never felt both so expressive and so understood.

i hear you,

you see me.

i’m staring through my soul with this magic we call poetry.

mess

Life is a beautiful mess. It is full of pain, suffering, joy, and happiness. There is destruction and there is creation. Life is full of ups and downs. It’s beautiful though. It’s knowing that although it is terrible, there is good. It’s knowing that people come together in the hardest times to create something new, to bring hope. It’s sloppy and dirty but is also clean and tidy. Life’s mess inspires inspiration and innovation. It paves a path for the next generations to do more, to be better than their ancestors. To restore the beautiful mess that was given to them, and make something out of it. Life is a mess- a chaotic mess of the good, the bad, and the ughh. A mess that needs to clean up, but also left alone. It’s nothing but a beguiling, convoluted, destructive, amusing thing. It’s beautiful, that’s what life is, a beautiful mess. 

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Car Garage

I don’t like to be a car kid but man cars are awesome. Here are some I love:

e30, e36, e46 bmw 3 series

These three cars are just so pretty (the last one is my car, although admittedly I’d prefer a different one) the e30 is iconic and overdone these days but just such a nice boxy design with that little grill and the two lights. e36: cool and has a really nice interior plus a little more modern still with that retro boxy thing. e46: I love my car

1955-60 Mercedes Benz 300sl gullwing 

I mean this is probably the best-looking car ever made.

Honda nsx 1991 

Just look at those tail lights

Porsche safari 911 

It’s an off-road 911. What’s not to love.

Lancia delta

Iconic in rally racing, similar to MKI gti but just super unique widebody on this car.

Porsche rwb 

911 but like PHAT

1986 mr2 

My dad had this car in 1986, it is so cool looking and has pop-up headlights and with the stock wing just is a very cool mid-engine Toyota

Detomaso Pantera GTS 

He made a new one recently but those old ones are just so nice, really stunning from every angle.

Lowered Toyota hilux (1969) or Datsun 

These trucks are so cute my old ceramics teacher had a Datsun in baby blue, awesome car

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300sl, pc: i dont know ive had this photo on my computer a while

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Pantera, pc: Shannons Auctions

The Woman in the Window

When I was the age of 9, or maybe 10, I lived in a little bungalow on Montgomery St. It had wooden floors, no AC, and a backyard littered with spiky oak leaves. I would sweep these leaves off my trampoline before jumping to the sky. Bounce, squeak, bounce, squeak. Flinging my limbs into various shapes, I would flip and glide through the air.

One day, one bounce, I spotted a face. Over the fence, in the window of the old people’s home next door, a woman sat watching. She was old with a face creased like tissue paper and a fierce black mane of hair. We held eye contact for the second I hung suspended in the air. Bounce, I smiled. Squeak. Bounce, I waved. Squeak. Bounce, she smiled back. Squeak.

PC: https://www.westend61.de/images/0001194761pw/pensive-mixed-race-older-woman-looking-out-window-BLEF05671.jpg

Her eyes remained sad though, and even as I lay in my bed that night with trampoline-skinned knees, I couldn’t stop thinking about the woman in the window.

The following morning, I got out a thick black sharpie and several sheets of blank paper. I headed outside and, with resolve, started tracing out big letters. “Hello,” I wrote. “My name is…” I climbed up the ledge of the fence, and sure enough, the woman in the window spotted my paper messages.

I felt as if I had made a friend.

I don’t remember when it was that I first noticed the blind in the next-door window had been drawn. I was used to regular ambulance sirens outside the old people’s homes, but when my friend’s room was left empty, it affected me personally. Wherever she was now, I hoped her sad eyes had regained a spark of joy.

3 things I treasure

The world is constantly changing. When I’m older it will be a lot different than it is now. No matter what though, I will always cherish these.

1.) The rain. I already wrote a whole blog post about it but I love the way the sky looks when it’s cloudy. I love the smell outside. The music sounds better and the mountains look better.

2.) Sitting on the beach and looking out at the ocean at night. Watching the boats or lack of. And of course watching the night sky, if I can see it. (Far from light pollution).

3.) What is really special to me, uniquely me, are the numerous points in Southern China where I can see these beautiful vistas every Summer. My special spots in Hunan where the flora is incredible. And there’s this unforgettable temple too- it’s high in the mountains with very few people. It’s enormous- it has a whole lake, completely flat and silver as the sky. Long, winding stairs carve across the entire temple surrounded by fog. So you’re just walking around from breathtaking building to building, it’s incredible. I can’t believe somewhere like that actually exists.

PC me swimming in Wangling

Love

I love love. I love the little things like the post-its I use in stats or how I can recognize moon phases thanks to astronomy. I love how drawers close after one push and it’s silent. I love how big my new water bottle is. I also love the big stuff like how my dad texts me every morning or how my grandparents drive up to Ojai on the weekend to pick me up. I love how the earth smells after it rains or when the sun peaks through the clouds. I love when my earbuds are at the perfect volume- not too loud but not too quiet. I love how my family prays to my grandpa every time we eat together because we know he is watching over us. I love how my friends who are miles away send me photos of their days.  I love how my family plays hand and foot for hours and we just laugh and shuffle decks of cards. I love my collection of cards from my loved ones that I’ve hoarded since I was younger. I love my summer memories of driving through Ojai with my favorite person. I love listening to a new song and adding it immediately to a playlist. I love my mom, even though we have our troubles, she is there for me even when she cannot be there physically. I love my sister, she is my best friend and greatest rival. I love cats, and how they are so particular about people. I love the feeling of a nice hot shower after a cold day. there is so much to love. I love dancing in the mirror to 2000s pop music. I love flowers and how beautiful they smell. I love my friends. I love reading and crying about the characters. I love talking about love and all there is to love.

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pc: me

crying

There is something so relieving about crying. Something about breaking down, being able to let all the floodgates open, it is just so satisfying. You no longer have to be an atlas, finally able to put down the weight of the world. Being able to release all the negative energy and take a breath of fresh air.  There is something about the beautiful essence of the silent tears rolling down your face, crying in solitude. It’s a time of reflection. A time to look back at what made you cry in the first place and see if it was worth the tears. And sometimes it’s just a cry, with no rhyme or reason. 

I love the feeling of being able to listen to music, or the rain and cry. The deep breaths, the salty tears, and closed eyes are something so mundane but yet so beautiful. The streaks on your face show that you’ve worked through something, and the red eyes show that you were able to see through the thing at hand and put it into perspective. The final tremble in your voice and body shows that you are finally at peace. The selfies in your camera roll show that you made light of something that just seemed so detrimental. 

The final wipe is a triumph. You made it through the journey. You are ready to go on with your day, you might cry again later, but for now, you are okay. The cry was beautiful, you let down your shield for a little bit, and now you have to put your armor back up and brave the day. 

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pc: me

Poetry Pt. 3

another batch of poems:

unitled iv

it’s time i stop waiting on you

just think how many dandelion wishes

i’ve wasted on you

womanhood

i thought ‘womanhood’ meant

blood spilling between my thighs,

lipstick the same shade of crimson,

boyfriends and sparkling champagne.

but now,

i hurry home before it gets too dark,

i clutch keys between my knuckles.

[remember to use the public restroom in a pair, 

just in case, just in case.]

now,

i report accounts daily for unwanted dick pics,

i bite my tongue as a catcaller whistles,

daring the older man across the street

to look me in the eyes.

now,

i find imperfection in every inch of my skin,

i am told it is my stomach is a distraction, 

because, “boys will be boys”.

now,

it means

glancing over one shoulder and

eating disorders and

snide comments,

pervy math substitutes,

catcalls and 

cramps and-

on my 13th birthday,

my mother bought me pepper spray.

this is womanhood.

light

At the end of each day, when I get out of the shower and brush my hair in the reflection of my steam-coated mirror, I contemplate quite possibly every decision I’ve ever made. I feel the water trickle down the arch of my spine and across my lower back. I let it drape over my shoulders, forcing together flexibility with stillness. I look at myself and no longer criticize. My head turns to the right side as I study the curvature that makes up my exterior. Every night a light seeps into me, it gives me the ability to feel and describe. I feel everything, every drop of water or word spoken. They mean something to me, my mind feeds off of the ability to experience a sensation. My vertebrae twist and my chest crawls outwards, My feet no longer touch the ground and I levitate upwards, the light carries me. My fingertips fall numb and the air expands. A million particles and breaths fill the vastness of the atmosphere. I am nothing and everything all at once. The light swarms me and slithers across my surface. It intertwines with my fingers and the crooks of my neck. It mangles my hair, stretches my skin. It opens my eyes and locks my jaw. It wrenches my shoulders back and opens my throat. I am not me, not without my light. I can’t control her, she flows within me. Her essence seethes through my bones and brings life to my nerves. Her glow leaks out of my mouth and ears, dripping off the tip of my tongue. The layer that separates the world from my organs melts away and leaves me with only a soul. My body means nothing, the only truth I know is my mind and soul. She festers within me. At the end of each night, I look into her hollowed eyes, and thank my tired light. She lets me feel.

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pc:me