The Secret Ingredient

Children tell me that they can smell the cinnamon right off me when they greet me each morning, that they can tell the days my face powder is more flour less castor sugar, the days my hands are swollen from all that kneading. I have been baking for long enough to know the taste that…

Dragon Heartstrings

If it’s true what they say, and Prometheus really did steal fire to hand it over to mankind, he and I could be best friends in every life. You see, I play with fire for a living, watch it dance around my fingertips, as we mend and break objects of all sizes. This welder has…

Sandcastles

Imagine a Lego House, two stories tall, with arched doorways, more playrooms than bedrooms and a garden to fence it off. Now, remove all the Lego pieces. Remove the red bricked slanting roof, the second floor balcony, the extra room for the dog that never existed anyway, and all you’re left with is patchy imagination…

Terms and Conditions

I have already outlived my father, my grandfather, and all the generations that came before them, but I still barely scrape over the average life expectancy in this country. Isn’t it ironic how I can surpass decades worth life quality and still not be good enough? I am an over-achieving warrior in a land full…

KINTSUKUROI

Kept in a little blue box with little engravings of cherry blossoms, I hid memories of you in a part of my mind long forgotten. Nobody knows this but tonight I think you should, That I reopen my box of memories to heal scars that have left me numb. Some scars are shy, you know…

Home

When you spend your life juggling between paper plates and plastic cups, in a world where disposing is easier than preserving, is permanence really a gift or a curse instead? I spend most days building homes. I could call myself an opportunist, because I spend my days looking for broken walls to rebuild in a…

Privilege

I come from privilege, from a people who could read signboards in languages that did not pronounce home in a way that felt welcoming, languages that started from the wrong side of things, as if to only build up halfway, creating a divide no bridge could ever bring together. My father was the first teacher…

Fistful of Dreams

We share a bed, finding new games to decide who sleeps in the middle each night, everything ranging from rocks-paper-scissor to a simple roll of the dice. The winner gets to choose the sleeping positions for all three, and we are yet to learn if this victory comes laced with privilege or irony. The right…

Secret Pockets

There is only so much you can learn by stripping a person down to their naked soul to see what really hides within flesh and bones. Try taking the person out of the clothes for a change, let the folds and creases tell stories of tears and laughter long lost in their wrinkles. You may…

Stagnant Waters

Imagine living life on a treadmill, walking miles only to wipe off the starting line in vain attempts to reach the better life waiting 3 feet away. Imagine each step closer taking you two steps behind, up until a point that you can’t pinpoint a beginning, waiting for a corner in the street to make…

Let’s Rebel a Little

The first time you witness your country at war, you ask yourself whether war is just another game the gladiators left for us to play, and we, with our need to outdo generations, forgot that blood baths are not another name for spa dates. The second time you witness your country at war, you ask…

Thor, You Say?

I call my hammer a paradox, because on the days my arms feel like they will fall off, are the very nights my family falls asleep with their stomach’s full, which is to say, a hard day’s night is more pleasing than painful. Each morning, I pass this poster on the corner of a street,…