Recently I've been exploring.
December, in a way, is a closure. It signals the ending of the year, while unleashing countless travels, weaving in and out of time. A month of reflection, a month of gratitude. Although this year took on a more diverse route than the past, there is still space to hold thanks to.
The reality of a hiatus is hovering within a tranquil bubble of contemplation.
Natalie by Keana Aguila Labra explores a journey of grief, longing, reminiscence, regret. The aftermath of a loved one’s departure leaves the narrator reflecting on the vulnerable collection of memories they have left of them.
Take a second, and breathe.
In through your nose, out through your mouth.
In and out.
In and out.
In elementary, we used to do little reflection exercises towards the end of the school year. Along the lines of "what did you enjoy doing this year, what did you least enjoy, what can you improve on...", they were the same little snippets pasted in the summary section of our report cards. As we age, time flies out of our hands and we seldom have the time to reflect and think about what's passed or soon to come. A period in high school was emphasized on constructing and achieving SMART goals, and being in that mindset, it's easy to dismiss everything else around us.
In hopes that I'm not too late, here are some of the homes I'd like to give thanks to for the past two years:
The /tƐmz/ Review: Whom I had my very first publication with. I'm always grateful for Aaron and Amy of The /tƐmz/ Review in opening that first door for me. I hadn't known a lot of about the literary world, and I was carrying a piece of guilt and grief in me. Thank you for lending me that first hand.
Marías at Sampaguitas: I took my first stab at writing creative nonfiction. It was daunting because I was used to writing poetry. Weaving together a personal narrative while making sure it flowed was hard. Thank you to Keana for believing in me, and gave a home to my debut CNF piece. Later, I applied to be a reader and got position offer to be poetry editor. Marías truly uplifts the voices of marginalized individuals.
Kissing Dynamite: I wrote a poem about a friend whom I met in elementary that passed away. This was my first acquaintance to death of someone I knew. It's never easy to get past. Thank you to Christine for giving a home to it.
a walk after work by the Yaletown Ferry Dock
the evening glow a warm hue around the stony waters
sweet tinge of sea salt in the Vancouver air
I want to fly, tiny legs gallop into the air
like dreams we had when we were young
land back on earth
Canadian geese waddle on one corner to the other
circling back on paths already taken
I watch in fascination