you cannot change
the core of who you are
you love with fire
and you hate with it too.
your joy sets people’s hearts ablaze
they dance with you, entranced
then run away and never return
when they see your rage
is an inferno.
they ask you to stop your flames
and leave you to weep
in the smoldering remains
you cannot change
the core of who you are.
when will people understand
fire is fire
it will warm them
and it can burn them
it cannot be put out
when all they strike are matches
they will take what they can get
then abandon you,
seek fire
they can control
but you cannot change
the core of who you are:
this burning passion for life
with the power to destroy
everything in its wake



i want my words
to make you laugh
move you to tears
nourish your mind
inspire you
to fight back
and join a

i want my words
to send shivers
down your spine
instill an ache
inside your heart
and between
your legs
make you believe
you know me
as if reading
what i write
is the same as
your fingers
lightly pressing
on my soul

i want my words
to reach the horizon
in endless droves
while i chase them
thanking them
for setting me free


I’m turning 24 soon

why don’t I have my life together

why have I accomplished so little

why am I drowning in college debt

why are there ants crawling all over my bathroom sink

why are Diva Cups so hard to insert

why have I not looked for another job yet

why am I still stuck on my screenplay

why haven’t I revisited the one story that my college advisor said I should publish

why haven’t I gotten laid yet

why won’t boys I like, like me as I am

why do I have to suppress myself in order to be dateable

why do I always have something to say that nobody else wants to hear

why don’t I feel like a woman

why do I feel like a lost little girl

why is it so hard to reach out to people for my birthday

why am I so afraid that people won’t want to celebrate the day of my birth

why am I still terrible at leaving voicemails

why haven’t I opened a retirement account yet

why can’t I understand that honesty is the worst policy

why are you reading this

why is another year just another reminder that I am one step closer to never amounting to anything


Who, Who, Who

At a staff meeting last Friday, our new ED introduced a get-to-know-you exercise for us to do. We had to partner up and take turns asking the following questions:

  • Who are you?
  • Who do you pretend to be?
  • Who are you becoming?

The toughest part was that the answerer had to respond to each question repeatedly, in different ways, and the asker had to keep asking the question without reacting to the answers given, until the minute was up. It was a very difficult, awkward, tense, emotionally unsettling, and introspective game, but I’m glad we did it. I will share what I remember of my answers below, for reasons.

Who are you?

I am a girl.

I am a woman.

I am an intersectional feminist.

I am a slacktivist.

I am a social media narcissist.

I am someone who is still trying to figure out what her life is about.

I am Cambodian American.

Who do you pretend to be?

I pretend to understand love, when I guess I don’t.

I pretend to be someone smaller than I am.

I pretend to know everything about some things.

I pretend to be honest.

Who are you becoming?

I am becoming a woman who doesn’t feel like a girl.

I am becoming a more self-assured, confident person.

I am becoming someone who is realizing that life is a beginning, and not the end.


What’s the point of life? Well whose life do I mean? I’ve always gone by the self-made principle, because really, it’s you who makes your life what it is right, I mean arbitrary circumstances and oppressive systems aside, life is 99% attitude and 1% effort or sorry I forgot how the platitude goes, more like 50% attitude, 50% sweat blood tears, sweaty bloody tears, teary bloody sweat okay that isn’t right either but the point is, there is no point until you make a point which is rendered pointless when you think about it so the point being, don’t think about it? Let’s backtrack here. What is the point of my life? Everyday, every moment seems to trigger some existential crisis. The drive to work, the drive from work, windows cracked, singing off-key at the top of my lungs knowing I’m going to haphazardly park my car in the gutter until the next morning then it’s the drive to work, the drive from work, you know the rest, I’m lying in bed wondering where did I go wrong, or did I go so right that it’s all wrong, am I making any sense, stuck in another cliched mind-trap because no thought I own can ever truly be mine, nothing I say do or think is original, my life isn’t original, but is the point of my life to be original? Or is it to be good, am I good, am I a good person, I’m trying sometimes is that enough, I’m comparing myself to the worst is that enough, if I believed in hell I’d already know where I’m headed once I die, is this life not enough, do I need several lifetimes to prolong my faltering human potential and mediocrity?, no back to the purpose, the purpose, what was the point, what is the point, do I need someone to tell me, does it have to be a He cuz fuck that shit, I define this, my life, but when I’m doing such a shitty job of it can someone take the wheel, Jesus take the wheel?, no I need to fucking take the goddamn wheel and drive, driving again, driving to and from work, 9-5 all day errday, it’s the same thing over and over and yes I’m living but I’ve stopped feeling alive and I’m young and stupid but drugs and boys are not the solution, what is my solution, not this, this monotony, but I need this monotony to live even if I’m not really living, do I need fame, I said I didn’t but why the irrepressible urge to be known, to be admired, to be loved, it’s human, it’s only human, fame is just another medium, people don’t want to die alone, people want to die loved and remembered, can you be loved and remembered for driving to and from work all day errday stuck in the deep rut of monotony don’t answer that, I need to be fulfilled, I need to stop being this lazy fuck and go do something that will make me look back and say I was worth something, to people, to me, but mostly to people because I am defined by people and I’m told not to care what people think but that’s fucking bullshit everyone fucking cares about what everyone thinks why else do we talk about loneliness like it’s the worst thing in the world and love like it’s the best, the point of life is to care about what people think and make people love you and then you die, is that it, yes that’s it