Buried Terracotta Dreams

Image courtesy of: HEandRO

I lost my heart in Xi’an,
slipped it into the suitcase
of a boy I’d met three days ago
before kissing him goodbye.

Strange, how stray words tangle
and lives shaken off trajectory,
suddenly align.

My youth was spent by simple
seaside. Every day, watching the
gentle rise and fall of predictable
tides. Whilst he grew up on the
other side of a different shore line.

I wonder if the same waves would
remind him of when he saw crimson
flow, breathed in the stench of fragile
bodies broken by the warm earth
they were buried under, all the
nameless numbers surrounded by
plaques of rubble and dust while
the sun rose behind him as if
it was just any other day.

Continue reading “Buried Terracotta Dreams”

Heart to Heart

I have always found comfort in the fact that my world is subjective, that it’s my perceived reality.

It has helped me time and time again to recognise my purpose in life and form a value system I can stand by.

In general terms, I would consider myself strongly anti-deterministic and extremely liberal. In other words, I am a strong proponent that everyone chooses their own fate and are allowed to hold their own world views as long as they do not infringe on anyone else’s right to do the same.

That, I have convinced myself over the past few years, is the best way to make everyone happy. I hate to say this, but sometimes, just sometimes, I really wish it wasn’t.

Continue reading “Heart to Heart”

3 Steps to Deal With Failure

In life, sometimes you win and sometimes you lose.

As a student, when your end-of-year results are released and the reality of your mediocre grades is hugely disproportionate to your high expectations, you can’t help but feel like you have lost. There are two extremes you could jump to in this moment or when dealing with any type of failure:

a. Instantaneously brushing it off: ‘lol alg man’

b. Crying a tsunami: ‘this has literally ruined my existence’

I suggest doing neither because it’s unhealthy: you’re not really dealing with the problem.

If it really was ‘lol alg man’ why did your instinctual feelings say differently? Are you sure you’re not delaying the inevitable emotional outburst and stunting your personal growth for the moment being? On the flip side, is over dramatising the issue really going to get you anywhere except into spirals of unhappy thoughts that are blown way out of proportion to the issue at hand?

Rather than trying to escape from your feelings or sinking into the abyss of pain, this is the time to think systematically and logically because of the emotional state you’re already in.

From recent personal experience, I present my 3 steps to recovering and improving from failure. Like all self-help articles, the steps are totally obvious but incredibly difficult to follow in practise. If you are dealing with failure, I challenge you to give it a try no matter how much you would rather numb yourself to forget or intensify the feelings to justify responding irrationality. Continue reading “3 Steps to Deal With Failure”

brave the world

[trigger warning for self harm]

There have been many times in my life where I have felt negative emotions intensely.

This is one of those times. Instead of me trying to paint you a picture of the people and events that led to this point, let’s talk about these crappy feelings in general terms.

Usually, my anger results from dissatisfaction with myself or something so silly and trivial blown way out of proportion. That is the ultimate price I pay for being ‘sensitive’,  ‘an idealist’ and forever ‘romanticising life’. These labels all hint at, but not quite explain, the intensity I put into merely existing.

You understand me, right? In fact, you’re a little bit like me, I’m sure. After all, there’s a little bit of crazy within the best of us. We are not spectators of life – we are life and life consists of more than new beginnings and happy endings.

The critics (which are oftentimes from within) will tell us that we’re being overdramatic, illogical and crazy – this isn’t a situation where I’d tell you to ignore them, instead, I wonder if maybe they’re right.

Just like how horror movies aren’t scary if you don’t imagine yourself in the characters’ shoes, maybe life will be easier if we took a more objective standpoint every so often…if we just paused for a moment and breathed out, pushed away.

When I was a lot younger, I just cried and cried when I felt negative emotions. Then as I grew up, I resorted to punching walls; I liked that sting that blossoms on your knuckles upon impact that fades out into a low hum of pain. Eventually, due to morbid curiosity – it was inevitable really – I experimented with a more stereotypical version of self harm.

p.s. this is when you click away if you don’t want to see imagery of self harm or romanticisation of the practise.

Continue reading “brave the world”

cirque du soleil

Ever since I was a little girl, I have been obsessed with the concept of carnivals and circuses.

There just seems to be some mystique to the concept.

The pretty tickets, the candy floss, the fortune teller…

I remember going to a local circus when I was younger with a very simple set up. I went with my whole family and we were sitting near the back where my vision was partially obscured by the guy with the thinning hair and the woman with too much hair in front of me. We didn’t expect how big of a deal this little travelling group was, to a boring town like mine.

Thinking back, the quality of performance wasn’t that spectacular but in that moment I loved every second of it.

Around that time, I was eating the idea of circuses up everywhere else too. Darren Shan’s Cirque du Freak, The Night Circus…

I don’t know what it is about carnivals. Is it that joyous cheer of escaping the minutiae of life, the way magic overlaps reality and that child-like wonder returns or maybe it’s that underlying sinister feeling that accompanies a trip made after the sun sets and your imagination runs wild about what lurks in the darkness.

So I guess that is why I spent a lot more money than I should have on a ticket to see Totem performed by Cirque Du Soleil, alone.

I am so so so excited.

Although this doesn’t align exactly with my carnival dream, it is the closest I have gotten in almost a decade. That’s very sad, considering I’m not even two decades old.

Why am I going alone you may wonder?

I can assure you that it has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that I am broke and can’t pay for anyone else to accompany me. *shifty eyes*

Seriously though, I genuinely think that what I explained above is so special to me, I don’t think anybody will truly understand and ‘be there’ with me emotionally, over-romanticising every single detail. Not to mention, it’s healthy (and in fact encouraged) to be able to feel comfortable enough to take yourself out on a date once in a while.

I like the idea of being alone in a crowd of people. When we exist in the same time at the same place enjoying the same experience for our different reasons. To leave the stadium with that one section of our lives that are identical but have it affect us in different ways is incredibly exciting to me.

Sometimes people forget that you don’t need to always be with someone to have fun. Being able to enjoy the company of yourself is a skill that many people, including myself, need to develop and so I shall.

The show is in 5 sleeps and I can already see the acrobats fly and tumble in my dreams.