Storming


There’s a delicious storm outside.

the sky is red
the rain falls in torrents
and the wind comes in gusts against the window panes.

if only storms at this hour meant

you could stay up to watch them
forehead pressed against cool glass
untamed rivulets separated from your fingertips by centimeters

when that becomes temptation too much
perhaps even go outside for the full taste
being in the heart of magnificence
feeling pelting drops of water on your skin and in your hair and eyes
getting soaked and chilled to the bone

and not go to work tomorrow.

Instead, I shut my windows tight
so that nothing gets wet.
close my curtains
so I can’t see the lightning.
The thunder is muffled and far away.

and be thankful, I suppose, I can shut out the storm
turn out the lights
snuggle under the covers
warm, dry and oblivious in my modern cave
and try to go to sleep.

Advertisements

Things that make me happy


Things that make me happy:
1.
2.
3.

That’s how I feel right now.

I can’t rightly say that I’m still depressed– I feel fine most of the time, I’m functional, I’m not moping, I’m not moody, I’m not sad or upset or emotional. I go about my day as per normal. I know things can get much worse than this, have been much worse than this, but I’m not in that ditch any more and I don’t ever want to go back.

Yet it isn’t clear where I am. Some barren wasteland? A no man’s land between deep ditches?

There is nothing in my life right now that I can think of that makes me truly happy. Nothing in my life right now gets me excited or motivated. Everything is awash with this blanket of… pointlessness. Emptiness.

It’s not even as if I’m languishing– I’m doing my best to keep myself moderately occupied. It’s important to stay in touch with friends, right? To read books, watch shows, play music, draw, keep up with learning a new language, go out, buy new things, exercise, travel… so yeah, I try to do some of everything. Prove to myself that I’m living and not wasting my life away. Enough to facebook-pretend. I’m not the kind who needs lots of activities to be satisfied, anyway. Yet, all that I do– including getting out of bed in the morning– I do because I’m supposed to, and not because I want to. Sure, I don’t have to drag and force myself out of bed, but neither do I look forward to the day.

I may not need five hundred friends and activities everyday, but I do need something. What? Even when I think I know, how do I get it?

Or is that fallacious thinking– to assume that this one thing is going to miraculously solve your whole life? That this one thing is what will give your life meaning and purpose?

That doesn’t sound like meaning– it sounds like a crutch.

I do not know what I have to do, or what I can do, to end this reign of emptiness. How do I find my way out of this wasteland?

I may not be feeling sad at the moment. But to know that there is nothing right now that can make me happy– truly happy– that’s perhaps one of the saddest things there is.

Honey Lemon Sunshine


You can lie to the world, but you can’t lie to yourself. 

You can dissociate from the world, but you can’t dissociate from yourself. 
~~~

I wish time would stop– just for a little while. Let me live in this moment– and this moment only– just for a little while, without feeling the grains slipping through my fingers, without thinking about what next, without worrying about significance, without worrying about the future or the big picture. 

Just a pause to do nothing but soak in the moment, without it running by and slipping away into oblivion. 

The moment I mean– it feels a pretty colour. Light– like honey lemon rays of sunshine, or crystal turquoise streams of water. But lighter, much lighter than either of that. Just a swash of colour and light enough to float you away. 

~~~

Downstairs someone is shouting, screaming, fighting. 
I really hate it when people fight, when people scream, when people shout. 
When I hear the anger and venom in their voices, I want nothing more than to shrink and shirk and hide away, away, away… 

I feel like shouting back at them (ironic)
take your fight somewhere else
don’t destroy other people’s peace,
other people’s moment
I can hear you from the 40th storey for crying out loud


but while their voices, reflected by the ground, travel up
mine would merely be whipped away by the wind…
whipped away by the wind. 

A cup of tea 
would be nice.
or honey? 
tea with honey? mm. 
~~~

and you write.
to what purpose? 

we went up, and we went down
we went fast, we went slow
we expanded energy, then we ate
we started at a point, and ended up at another, not too far away. 

to what purpose?

to what purpose, any of it? 

who has the task
of injecting meaning
fashioning purpose
is it god? ourselves? 
or something in between? 

Yearn


and we yearn

to be thought of
to be cared for
to be loved
to matter

we yearn

to make a difference
to have some significance
to have meaning
to be real

we yearn

for so much
but actually, really, the simplest of things

which are the hardest to achieve .

Just one person, just one. To make it real.
Suddenly, it seems the saddest thing to know
That no one is thinking of you at this moment.

How can you be so silly?

Always yearning for more
more than most can give
When?

Life as a Series of Distractions


We hear, without listening.
Speak, without talking.
Interaction, without connection.

Life can be so depressing sometimes, with its bleak realities.
Perhaps that’s why we need to partake in other things
to distract ourselves from the drudgery?

Then life becomes one big game of distraction, to pass the time?

I can’t buy that.

Bored, restless, frustration and dissatisfied.
How do I find and achieve my reality?

For something I’d listen with all my heart to.
For words that aren’t hollow and empty.
For a connection, oh that elusive connection.

With another person, with myself, with the world, with life.

A life worth living.

Full Accountablility


Close an eye or
Turn one blind
Filter out and summarize
Normal natural inevitable
Like the way vision and attention works
Like the way neurons refresh and
Some information gets left behind.

Conveniently forget.
Let it go.

In the big scheme of things
It’s easier to say, ‘Well, it doesn’t really matter.’
‘Don’t sweat the small stuff.’
‘No one will know.’
‘No one will remember by tomorrow.’
And just breeze by
Imaginary blinders on
Carelessly skipping, knocking, stepping
While carefully avoiding eye contact.

Live in the moment, in the present, what’s past is past.
There’s that twinge of guilt, which you crush, and say
I can’t be devoting all my timemoneyeffort to that
Even if I think it’s a good cause or is the right thing to do
It’s a small thing
It doesn’t make a difference
I have other commitments.

Besides
Everyone else does what I’m doing
This is socially acceptable.
I’m doing fine.
It’s not me
Not my job
Not my problem
Not my responsibility
I’ll mind my own business
Do my own thing.

“If you know it’s wrong, why do you still do it?”
I demand of those in my charge.
“If you know this is what you should do,
and you know why you should do it,
why don’t you do it?”
Easy questions, not so easy answers.
Easy to say, easy to think, less easy to do.

But why?
Perhaps it’s just a habit, living carelessly.
Carelessly, thoughtlessly, lazily.
Just a habit.
Perhaps we can break that habit.

It’s kind of true that in the larger scheme of things
A lot of it doesn’t seem to matter
People forget, don’t notice
No one really knows or cares or remembers
You can get by with doing the minimum.
Work smart, ignore the inconsequential.
Relax; y so serious?

Yet every action has its reaction
And every reaction a subsequent reaction
Chain reactions
And every word you say and thing you do
Has the potential
To uplift or cut someone else down
To help make the world a better place
Or not.

Your lack of action seems inconsequential
Only because you neglect
To compare it with
what it could be.

Religion’s got the right idea;
You’re always, all the time
Everywhere and everywhen
Fully accountable to god.
Fully. Accountable.
To someone who will notice and will and can call you out on it.

Let’s be fully accountable to ourselves.
Break that habit.

Let’s go.

Nope, still addicted


Let me put this idea to you:

All that anyone in the whole world throughout all of history ever does… is chase emotions.

We may do it in countless different ways, we may do it with the help of rationalizing and intellect, but at the end of the day, are we not all struggling to find out exactly what will bring us that sense of… happiness? of contentment? of satisfaction? of meaning? of peace?

Chasing emotions.

In secondary school, we studied 12th night for literature and our teacher told us that Orisino was more in love with love than with anyone. He’d put his object of affection up on a pedestal and worshiped it from there. That image and idea struck me and stuck with me, and often I would see myself in a similar light; at that age, I loved getting into crushes. It didn’t matter how improbable my crushes were, how little I actually knew about them or how little interaction I had with them. I enjoyed admiring them from afar and I immensely enjoyed the emotional highs (and lows) that took place only in my own head and heart.

In love with love. To be even more specific– in love with the emotional highs associated with love? Love is a drug, an addiction.

When fans go crazy over their idols, when fandom obsesses over characters and pairings… If you’re not a part of it, it may look crazy to you. But it’s the same for everyone– you have your own method of chasing that emotional high, I’m sure you do. Be it through a sport, a art, your career, shopping, clubbing, alcohol… Intellectually, you may think your method is superior– more meaningful?– but emotionally its similar, is it not?

When I say I’m addicted to escapism, part of it comes from needing that high, and not finding it in real life, and so you run elsewhere in search of it.

When I had my first super-serious crush, my first infatuation, my first ‘love’, when I moved beyond being happy with fangirl-ing people from afar to genuinely wanting more, I think that upped the ante of emotional high enough to end all frivolous crushes.

When I had my first relationship… well. That emotional high, that fulfillment, felt like all I would ever need. As much as the intellectual side of me cringes and rolls its eyes at this naivety and superficiality… being in love made my world realer than real, it gave my days meaning and added colour everywhere.

To me, being able to share my life with someone else and share their world in turn compound the joy of everything beauty in life and made every pain bearable.

To me, a relationship is something I can pour my heart and soul into, make a deep emotional investment and get back exponentially high returns.

I got home today badly craving another shot of escapism.

What I really want is to have something really mesmerizing, something really captivating. A really good story (or something, anything) that will pull me in, and consume my world, at least for a while. Something touching, something moving, something that will tug on all your heartstrings and make you go awwww!!!<333 ;_; something that makes the world feel more real, more saturated, have more kick.

I search for that high in stories because there is nothing in real life right now, nothing that I can go awwww<333 over.

But stories, in whatever form they take, can no longer deliver the high I crave…
They just can’t. I just can’t. I can’t get emotionally invested enough. Stories don’t cut it anymore. How could they? You need a higher and higher dosage each time…

Even so, I still can’t stop chasing the little highs, just for a taste, a drop…

It’s been almost two years. I stare at the date and realize with a start that our anniversary date, which was yesterday, has faded in my mind and replaced with our break-up date, which I had been unconsciously counting down towards.

It’s truly amazing how time passes; I can’t believe it’s been this long. I still think of her just about everyday. Perhaps it’s more accurate to say that I think of a time, of a feeling, of an emotional high.

Everyday I miss it, and most days I seem to chase after it in all the wrong places for lack of knowing what else to do…

A Bubble Floating Through Emptiness


To reality hop.
Can I hop through different realities, please?
I really don’t want to be here.

Be in an anime, or a movie, a fantasy world. To come and go and leave and as you please.
Put me under, into the dream world, go down the rabbit hole, escape.

When I think about you, the world flips inside out and nothing makes sense. I want to run away.
In to psychedelic colours, grunge textures and linkin park songs. I lose touch with reality– this can’t be real, what is real? This is not my reality, I reject it. I don’t want to be here.

There must be somewhere else I can go. How can this be all there is? How can this be my life? It’s not mine, I reject it. I want to go back to there– that felt real, that’s where I want to be. No, that’s where I am. Who closed the door, the door to narnia, to nivarna, to bliss, to home? Why am I stuck in this place, in this shell, in this meaninglessness, in this emptiness?

I feel no attachment to this world, this realm, this reality– it’s not reality. No attachment, no bond, no relation, no investment. It’s not so much that I don’t want to be here as how much I want to be somewhere else– I’m lost. There’s a taste of reality, a taste of home– no, Home– a taste of heaven, I remember. I’ve been there before. Why did it go, where did it go? Who stole my keys and shut me out, threw me out?

How do I get back to reality?
How do I get back home?

Must I stay here, in this prison without walls, bidding my time, and waiting, hoping hopelessly that one day I will escape, one day I will be home again, and reality will be real?

Which is the reality? Is the reality I crave but a dream, a drug, an escapist’s delusion? Am I binded and intoxicated by a dreamy haze? How can things be so contrary– why does my definition of reality differ from yours, is reality relative?

Seeing you, meeting you turns my world (what world?) topsy turvey.

I don’t understand that, but I don’t understand anything.

I am a bubble, floating through emptiness, waiting desperately to

pop.

When the discriminated discriminate


I just read this piece from Thought Catalogue, “The Queer Community has to Stop Being Transphobic” and I couldn’t agree more with the sentiments of the author.

I used to be a transphobic gay man.
….
“I know I’m supposed to get it because I’m gay,” I said, “but I just don’t understand the whole trans* thing at all. It makes me feel so weird.”

That’s exactly how I felt. You would think that being gay would make it easier to understand what being trans is like, but on the contrary, I think it made it harder.

I would think to myself, yeah, I can totally understand not wanting to follow these stupid gender norms that society sticks by. I can understand being a girl and preferring to do guy things, preferring to wear guys clothes. I can even relate to the feeling of wanting to be a guy, or be more guy-like in appearance. Yet it’s because I could identify with all that so closely, I couldn’t understand why they needed to go one more step to actually become the other gender.

I mean, I would ideally prefer it too, if I were taller, more muscular, more masculine… but I can accept that this is how I was born, this is my body. I can learn to accept my body for its good points and ‘bad’ points, why can’t they? Don’t they realize that being a girl doesn’t mean you need to follow society’s stupid rules for girls? You can still wear pants, you can still do whatever you want to do. Why should the physical body matter so much? 

Why should it matter so much indeed.
To throw the question back at myself: why should clothes matter so much? Surely clothes matter even less than your body. Surely a colour would matter less. Surely… all these little stereotypically girl activities and accessories… what’s the big deal? Why can’t you just accept them? They are just things.

And yet I would feel so uncomfortable and out of place in a dress. Like a fish out of water. I wouldn’t feel like myself. Probably as uncomfortable as an average guy would be, if he were forced to wear a dress. Okay, admittedly slightly less since I’ve inevitably been ‘forced’ to wear dresses in my life time.

The other day I watched ‘These Ears Have Walls 2‘. It follows three separate story lines about lesbian couples, in different time periods, all set in the same house.

The first story was thoroughly depressing and the last story was positively uplifting and happifying (helllo Ellen Degeneres and Sharon Stone!). It’s really heartening to see just how far we’ve come and how different things are (in some places), from 1961 to 2001. But it was the second story, set in 1972, that was the most intriguing and thought provoking to me.

(spoilers!)

The story focusses on Linda, a young student who shares the house with a few friends, all lesbians. They are also part of a feminist group, but are being kicked out as the group doesn’t want to be associated with or thought of by others as a ‘lesbian group’ and want to be taken seriously as feminist.

The interesting tension comes when the friends go to a dyke bar and are disappointed and disapproving of how the lesbians in the bar fulfill traditional butch and femme roles. Linda, however, is charmed by and falls for Amy, a butch in a shirt and tie who rides a motorbike. Despite Linda’s efforts to get her friends to be accepting and open, they continually make fun of Amy.

It feels so ironic to me when people turn into exactly what they are fighting against. Like anti-gay religious people claiming that they are all about love, acceptance, forgiveness. This case is worse than that though; you’re clearly part of the same outcasted group, and yet you still discriminated against each other?

It reminds of that that scene from the L Word when the main L Word characters make fun of Moria for being ‘butch’ and for categorizing lesbians into those traditional roles. As though that’s something backward and old fashioned, something to be laughed at. Shouldn’t being part of the same out-casted group be enough to make you realize that how you are treating them is exactly the way you don’t want others treating you?

Yet I can still see both sides of the story. The girls dislike Amy because they see her, and  butch lesbians, as part of the problem. Here they are fighting for equal rights for women, for girl power and the empowerment of all things feminine. And here there are these females who are, bizarrely and counter-productively apparently trying to be men. Why buy into the idea that a suit and tie and masculinity means power, means control? Why think that you have to be the ‘male’ in the relationship and buy the drinks and make the moves and buy the flowers? All that chauvinism is exactly what they’re fighting against and they don’t want people from their own ‘ranks’ undermining their position.

On the other hand, Amy is just like them– she knows who she is and she accepts herself and will not lie or back down about who she is, even if she knows that it will make life difficult for her. She stands up for her own truth, just as they stand up for theirs.

The ugliest moment was when the girls made fun of her to her face, tried to mess up her neatly gelled back hair, and forced her to put on a girly top. Trying to ‘free’ her from her ‘self imposed’ restrictive masculine persona when in fact what they were doing were forcing Amy into their own box.

In another scene from the L word, Max (formerly Moria) tells Jenny, “If you think men are the enemy, then you and I have a problem.” Yes, men, or masculinity, aren’t the enemy, even for feminist. The enemy is bigotry, the enemy is oppression. The enemy is forcing your truths down someone else’s throat, forcing other people into your boxes, because you are more comfortable with that.

The truth always looks slightly different from different angles.

For me, trans* is difficult to understand because, my biological sex doesn’t matter as much. It’s not a core part of my identity– I honestly think that I would feel as comfortable in a male body as I do in my female body. To me, the expression of my gender and the expression of my sexual orientation is much more important than my biological sex. I am all for blurring the gender lines and androgyny.

I dare say this wouldn’t be the case for most people– if you find the thought of having the body of a member of the opposite sex weird and disturbing, then I dare say you can understanding how a trans person feels even more than I do. And if I wanted to understand, I can easily translate their experience into something I can relate to.

As humans, we are so incredibly diverse and the way we experience things can be so different. It can be such a leap to try and understand something that is so foreign to you it have never even occurred to you and you don’t know how to even start thinking about it. Yet, underneath all that, I really believe that all of our fundamental experiences are exactly the same. We are all human. It just takes you to make the effort to listen with openness and translate someone else’s problem into something you can relate to.

We are all human.

Windy Sunsets


I love walking home in the evenings, before the sun sets on a day with nice weather like today. There’s always something so poignant and emotional and beautiful about the times of dawn and dusk.

The blue sky and it’s puffy white clouds, so beautiful, so beautiful.
We spend too much of the day indoors.
Want to just spend all my time sitting by the beach, staring into the horizon.
And feel the wind embrace you.

I love the wind, I really do. When it blows, it feels all encompassing, going around, over and, it seems, almost through you. I close my eyes as it roars past my ears and whistles through my hair. It makes me think and feel of carefree days, of freedom, of love and joy, of simple pleasures and happiness. It stirs up vagues wisps of emotion-memories of being overseas, on holiday, relaxing. It stirs up vague wisps of feeling-memories of the beach, of Bishan park, of Changi beach club, of childhood memories and being much younger. Perhaps it even reaches further back than that to the memories of childhood dreams and desires to fly.

The blue sky and white clouds and trees and wind also call up memories of Jalan Bangket. Of MacRitchie Reservoir. Of taking walks in her estate…of relationship memories.

It’s a taste. Of openness, freedom, carefreeness, contentment, peace and a simple joy… But also of days gone by. Of past simplicities and securities. Of being young, when everything was always alright. Of a happiness, light-heartedness and optimism that I no longer possess… it makes me melancholy.

The wind always fills me with emotion. If a were a theist I’d say that’s when I feel closest to God, when I can almost literally feel His embrace, his reassurance, his love. Yes, I feel so loved. But I’m not a theist.

Instead, I’d say its when I feel most alive, most aware of the beauty of life and living, most in awe and appreciation, most at one and almost at peace with the world.

The most beautiful things in life are often bittersweet, like the sunset at dusk.

Related:
I Think I Love the Wind the Best