Sunday, July 24, 2011

the place that stays

this is home. And strange as it may sound to me,  i miss it. 

"The place where love and feeling good don't ever cost a thing."
— Daughtry

This are all photos from long ago. I have been digging up the pretty ones that I had never got the chance to share. 
I'll be back there for a while, and that's the way it would be.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

If I should have a daughter by Sarah Kay

“If I should have a daughter, 
instead of Mom, 
she’s gonna call me Point B, 
because that way she knows that no matter what happens, 
at least she can always find her way to me. 

And I’m going to paint solar systems 
on the backs of her hands, 
so she has to learn the entire universe 
before she can say, 
‘Oh, I know that like the back of my hand.’

And she’s going to learn 
that this life will hit you 
hard in the face, 
wait for you to get back up 
just so it can kick you in the stomach. 

But getting the wind knocked out of you 
is the only way to remind your lungs
how much they like the taste of air. 
There is hurt here 
that cannot be fixed by Band-Aids or poetry. 
So the first time she realizes that Wonder Woman isn’t coming, 
I’ll make sure she knows she doesn’t have to wear the cape all by herself. 
Because no matter how wide you stretch your fingers, 
your hands will always be too small to catch all the pain you want to heal. 
Believe me, I’ve tried.

And, baby, I’ll tell her, 
don’t keep your nose up in the air like that. 
I know that trick; 
I’ve done it a million times. 
You’re just smelling for smoke 
so you can follow the trail back to a burning house, 
so you can find the boy who lost everything in the fire to see if you can save him. 
Or else find the boy who lit the fire in the first place, to see if you can change him.” 

But I know she will anyway, 
so instead I’ll always keep an extra supply of chocolate and rain boots nearby, 
because there is no heartbreak that chocolate can’t fix. 
Okay, there’s a few heartbreaks that chocolate can’t fix. 
But that’s what the rain boots are for. 
Because rain will wash away everything, 
if you let it.

I want her to look at the world through the underside of a glass-bottom boat, 
to look through a microscope at the galaxies that exist on the pinpoint of a human mind, 
because that’s the way my mom taught me. 
That there’ll be days like this. 
♫ There’ll be days like this, my momma said. ♫ 
When you open your hands to catch 
and wind up with only blisters and bruises; 
when you step out of the phone booth and try to fly 
and the very people you want to save are the ones standing on your cape; 
when your boots will fill with rain, 
and you’ll be up to your knees in disappointment.

And those are the very days you have all the more reason to say thank you. 
Because there’s nothing more beautiful 
than the way the ocean refuses to stop kissing the shoreline, 
no matter how many times it’s swept away. 
You will put the wind in winsome, 
lose some. 
You will put the star in starting over, 
and over. 
And no matter how many land mines erupt in a minute, 
be sure your mind lands on the beauty 
of this funny place called life.

And yes, on a scale from one to over-trusting, 
I am pretty damn naive. 
But I want her to know that this world is made out of sugar. 
It can crumble so easily, 
but don’t be afraid to stick your tongue out and taste it. 
“Baby,” I’ll tell her, 
“remember, your momma is a worrier, 
and your poppa is a warrior, 
and you are the girl with small hands and big eyes 
who never stops asking for more.” 
Remember that good things come in threes 
and so do bad things. 
And always apologize when you’ve done something wrong. 
But don’t you ever apologize for the way your eyes refuse to stop shining.

Your voice is small, 
but don’t ever stop singing. 
And when they finally hand you heartache, 
when they slip war and hatred under your door 
and offer you handouts on street-corners of cynicism and defeat, 
you tell them that they really ought to meet your mother”

— Sarah Kay

*hardly anything in this post belongs to me, but they were really inspirational to me and I just felt like I needed to share them :)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

how do you care for someone without hurting as well?

There is something I'd like to tell you, and that is
'I admire your ability to love'
It's so tough seeing you hurt
when love evaporated from 
the very grasp of your palms
Slipped through your fingers, unnoticed
Till you turn them up and saw emptiness.

Watching you cry,
     Witnessing you hurt
          I have always wished I could 
                take it all away,
                     take it all away.

But sometimes, maybe you needed that to feel.
And maybe it was me who was unfeeling.
The only emotions I could
     and have ever felt
          were mostly those of others
               through others.

I'm thinking maybe I should leave you all
before I render you all to statues of unfeelingness.



lost you somewhere along the way when I learnt how to fly
I turned back to see you struggling by
crouched in a pit, surrounded with sighs
widened shocked eyes to which you said, 'leave me to die'

stretched out a hand, let down a ladder
but you shook your head, heart growing harder
I dipped right down, reaching further
my balance at stake,
told myself you were worth it.

I hurt for you, then decided that I would hurt no more
I'll return to heaven, and wait for you by the border
taking a chance, having the faith
that resonance might occur one day with what I had said

bring a horse to the water, but you couldn't make it drink
you were the bird who'd forgotten how to sing

what I knew was the song was still in you
patience was all that mattered in lieu
I could drag you to where I lived in a flourishing garden
yet all you'd see was the old hunched warden

one fine bright mid-day
I recognised your silhouette against those sun rays
you embraced me and recounted how you had found your way


Wednesday, July 6, 2011

On differences.

  We live in a world of perceptions, it's true. To you, an ant is tiny. But to something, say, a virus, the ant would be enormous beyond believe. (For visuals, view this.)
  In all ways, this is how we live. We adore some people because of the way we see them, and dislike some because we give our own reasons as to do so. We learn to create some of our own perceptions as we are lead through experiences in life, but many were also put into our minds by others -some intentionally as well as some subconsciously.

  We were having a discussion/debate once in class, and that touched upon the subject of skin colour, race and appearances. Now, I feel really really fortunate to have the opportunity to be in a class with multinational people, all from different countries scattered across the very surface of our earth. I realised that if I had once thought myself to be open-minded, I had not known the possibilities of how much wider my mind could stretch, and now, I just keep learning. It is interesting to learn so much, and it truly is wonderful how each person can show us new ways of thinking because even if in minimal levels, our original cultures from the environments we once lived in have at least influenced us a little.

  So, we were asked to brainstorm reasons why a 'white' security guard might have had the certain amount of prejudice against a 'black' customer, and although I believe that we in that class might not have such a discrimination, we did agree that the customer's appearances would probably have been one of the factors. Now, you see. The problem with this is what the masses have a tendency to do -stereotyping. My whole life, I've been trying to break away from that so for anyone who tries that on me, would soon find out that they were wrong -if they actually do bother to find out. However, I realised just a little while back how this works. It was a pretty sad realisation, though I was suddenly aware of the fact that it is actually because society has moulded so many people into cliches that stereotyping have seemed to work.

  In the end, my friend stood up and demanded, "So, what you are saying is that they are judging that man because of his appearances (and indirectly, 'skin colour')? Is that right for them to do that?!" To which I knew I had an answer to so I spoke up, "It isn't right, but people still do it." I had interrupted, but I had to, and my friend fell silent for a second. Among all the voices, my teacher had heard me, and she requested that I repeat it. "It isn't right," I said, "but people still do it."

  I have never understood why and how people could judge and discriminate other people just because of the pigments in their skin. The way those layers of colours that wrap and protect our internals, that were passed down from generations and which one has never had any control over. I remember one of Bob Proctor's talks from the set of motivational audiobooks which I had purchased, and he was talking about something of this sort. He said something along the lines of, "Do you know that we actually look through our eyes? Not with. Through. We see with our minds. How we see a thing is actually the end result of the light reflected off the object, which travels through the tunnels of our iris until they reach the nerve endings in our brain. That is where the image is 'seen'."
  He quoted an example: "I was pointing out at a seminar yesterday, there was a person that we would refer to as a black person in the front row. I had black shoes on and a white shirt, and I said so, 'People refer to you as black, and me as white. You're not black, and I'm not white. My shirt is white, but I'm not the colour of my shirt. My shoes are black, but I'm not the colour of my shoes. Why do we say that you're black and I'm white? It's because we've been programmed so it gets those reflectors working, goes into our memory. How did it get into our memory? Someone put it there! That man or woman is not black and this man is not white. So we not only see through our eyes, we're seeing things that aren't true, that are programmed into our mind."
  "It is with this inner eyes of understanding that we see. And so if we believed in the testimony of our eyes, we would accept many conditions that are not true. For example, if we looked down a railroad track and observed that at a certain distance, the two tracks converge at one point, we know that that's not true. So our eyes deceive us. Don't be deceived."

  What he's saying is that we see with the amount and capability of our understanding; what we have already known. It is required, to make the most out of this thing we call life, to expand our understandings, and by this very way, ourselves.

  Before coming to the UK, I'd thought that I didn't belong to 'my' country. After living here for a bit, and having such a magnificent blend of internationality as social peers, I realised something. That is, I don't belong anywhere. Which if you are able to believe in paradoxes, it also means that I belong everywhere. Or at the very least, I could.

  I know of many people, especially back home, who have these ideas of 'a country of perfection', where there are technological advances, everyone is 'smart', and basically, an almost 'heavenly'-like place which they would take for the Western countries. I have known since the very beginning, that that couldn't be true. And now I can tell them for sure that I was right -if they still hold such beliefs. I am still able to be satisfied, and to say out loud that I am truly satisfied, that this was the right choice, coming here because I have one thing that overrides all these itty-bitty imperfections like the streets which aren't always littered free. And that thing is language. English, to be precise.

  Maybe at first sight, many would 'mistaken' me as being 'non-English'. And I wouldn't really want to say that I resemble one or something like that. However, I believe that deep inside my heart, it is all these words that fabricate the worthiness and the soul of my being. This isn't, as well, to 'boast' about the 'greatness' of this particular language. Nevertheless, it is the most beautiful one to me, personally, for it is my first language and when these words are produced through me, I know that they are the truth of what I know. This was the reason, a really really significant reason, that I knew that I had to live in an English speaking country.

  Going back to the idea concept of what you see is what you believe, I would say that I have not felt that I have faced discrimination here, despite the appearances that my ancestors have bestowed upon me.

  Having said that, there was one occasion, which I would like to share here.
  It was five in the afternoon, and me and two Chinese friends of mine were walking back from an early dinner. Along the way, I noticed three figures from afar, who looked barely like they were in their teens. Two were sitting on the ground, the other, on the dented road divider. Nothing really that suspicious, I thought.

  However, when we walked right past them, the boy sitting on the divider started calling out, 'Ni hao!', which basically means 'hello' in mandarin, in this derogatory manner and the other two started following suit. Unsure how to react, I tried to maintain some degree of friendliness towards them, smiling wryly, not wanting to offend people of such. It wasn't till all three of us had finally passed them all by, when the boy shouted, 'You're Chinese, bastards!'

  To be honest, I was a little stunned. However, I kept walking. If I should have been offended, I wasn't. Couldn't. Instead, it set me thinking, the wheels of my mind swivelling, and whatever emotion I had in me very quickly turned into pity. Pity towards them. I had never for once, even for a fraction of a second, felt like a victim. No. Instead, I pitied them because it was rather clear that they hadn't really been taught to respect others. They had not been taught to it doesn't matter what race you are, how you look like, and what is important is the sense of respect and dignity you have for all of life. They lacked that, and all I could do then was to hope that they might learn one day or that may the society improve for the better. No, they were the ones at the losing end. Not me. I knew who I was and I understood things. I could have a wonderful life. Would have a wonderful life. Is having a wonderful life. Society could definitely do without those kind of attitudes; and this makes me wish so hard that it could be that people learn to understand and be responsible before they become parents, seeing as how absolutely vital it is to the passing down of 'sights' and perceptions.

  I think I've read somewhere before, that nothing else really matters except for having respect towards all things in this universe. Showing them kindness, understanding them and if possible, assisting them to be the best that they can be.
  Also, give without the expectation of a direct return. That's one of the best things you can be. I have learnt to know how much better it feels to give and in return, accept the satisfaction of the pleasure of giving. Being able to lend a hand in times of need and in turn, inspire others, has been truly amazing.

  Maybe this sounds crazy right now, but I dream of a world one day where all the races have been mixed in all ways -places that they live in with no more countries with concentrated, homogenous races; genes, where children all have bits of various DNA in them; and friends. Friends who love one another because of each others souls. Which are the threads that weave the whole universe into its existence.

"If you're lucky enough to be different from everybody else, never change to be the same."
— Taylor Swift

*all images belong to others except for the last one. :)

Lots of love,

Sunday, July 3, 2011

walk among roses (part II)

   You might have already seen part I (and if you haven't scroll down or go to the previous post). These are some photos I'd taken when I took a short trip on foot to the botanic gardens to escape the mundanity of everyday homework-assignment-presentation school life. Having the knowledge that there were roses in the park in summer was inspiration, to which I set out to.

  I had a pleasant time. Ever was in my hands, or while shooting, before my face. The sun was rather kind that day and gave me glorious light to work with.

  After shooting, I sat among the gorgeous roses. Just sat there, watching the silence around me that was occasionally interrupted by teenagers' chatter or childrens' carefree wonder.

  When I felt that it was time, I got up and dusted my back. Setting everything right, I prepared myself to return to reality where it waited for me.

  Here are all the wonderful scenes of paradise I brought back with me. They keep my memory of the beauty that I'd once seen and I am sharing them with you so that we may never forget that somewhere out there, is a beautiful place worth living for.

parent and stroller among the colours.

a stranger reading.


what's left of me.


rose bush.



...especially to yourself.

soaring in brilliance.

on the way back.

cafe beneath sun rays.

leftover cigarette among pines.