And when I was sitting at a dinner table

surrounded with family,

and we were holding our sides

we were laughing so hard,

and it was eyes closed and smiling

and leaning over the edge of our seats laughing,

it was then that I knew.


I was finally happy.

I was finally new.

-July 2017 and always

String Lights

I’d like to memorize this moment–

how they all were woven together

beneath the twinkling stars.

Their shiny black hair reflected the setting sun,

and their smiles were happy,

springing from deep within– so much contentment,


and so much underlying it.

I can recall the red dress I was wearing,

and the weight I was carrying to be reminded

that I had to leave them in the morning.


But I didn’t need to sulk in that sadness.

I only needed to memorize the moment,

to preserve the more important feeling of

how they each reminded me of what mattered:

I had to get on that plane tomorrow

and finish what I needed to do,

and come back home to them

for the next time, indefinitely true.


There is purpose to these moments we know

we’ll look back on. When we’re living in them,

thinking, I’m going to miss this.

I’m going to remember this.

These are the defining moments

that highlight our meaning,

our life course, and our purpose.


There is so much more to care about beyond ourselves,

more than what is contained within our skin.

These moments tell us what it is.

-October 2017


“are you always this happy?”

“do people even need to tell you to smile?”

“yellow is your favorite color?”

“it would be, you optimist.”


and how can i not be?

if you only knew the thunder and lightning

that rumble in my chest,

the panicked feeling of displacement–

i have to leave i need to leave.

there’s also pangs of sadness and longing

and a clawing need to rest.

i endure dragging fights

of sleepless nights,

with no energy, none at all.

i pace at three in the morning,

terrified to no means end–

no end, no end

that i will never sleep again.

and i cry because i’m tired,

and i cry because i’m sad,

and i cry because i miss and reminisce

the days i used to feel at peace.


i am not always happy,

but i want to be.

because you want to be.

because everyone wants to be.

so i choose to be.


no one tells me to smile.

i just think of my favorite people,

and i think of love.

i think of my loved ones, happy.

and i can’t help but smile,

because i don’t like the feeling when i’m not.


and yellow is my favorite color,

because of the sun.

because the sun is light,

and the sun makes me think of the beach side.

and the sun is the absence of night,

(therefore, the absence of panicked insomnia fights).

and in the daytime,

i can be. i can be.

and i want to be optimistic,

so i choose to be.

because anxiety wants me not to be.

and i really, truthfully, want to be as happy

as i appear to be.

-April 2017