Sunday, December 27, 2015

Flame

I want to say you are the burn-off
The black ash that glows when you smile
Warm and tender, broken
By last year, and the year before
I have lost again
And I get filled up by your fire
Though it be far-off and pointless
Just your burning, ambitious soul,
Though it be simple electricity
Though it just be the kindling
I grow near.  

Monday, December 14, 2015

Lamp

You come in the night
A warm, still lamp
Humid and smokey
Fiery orange like candles,
Rain in the darkness
Tiny footsteps on a tin roof
Thousands of reminders,
By dreams I have
Rediscovered your light
Quietly I hold it,
Though my arms do not
Embrace you.


-A.K.-

Friday, November 27, 2015

Under Obligation

In the blood red glow of brake lights
I study your ashen skin
And damp dark eyes
Night settles with the cold fog
Mind your white shirt
Straighten your tie
In a black car you slip away
From the mindless babble
Voices in the dirty air
I dissolve and re-imagine you
Dressed in silk, or
Dressed in BDUs
How could your form fill
Such a large cavity
At only twenty years?
How could your body absorb
Alcohol and gunshots,
When you are still a child?

-A.K.-

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Inland (Winter)

I want to meet you before dawn
When it is cold and quiet,
And the sun sleeps below the ocean
Shining on another land,
Waves crashing in the silence
Salt in your hair, hair in your eyes
Dark as the sky
Before it bleeds blue, color
Seeping up from the sea,
And the city lights, in the distance, blink out
While your heartbeat is calm,
Each slow, quiet breath
Brings your chest close, warmth against me
In the frozen air, in the bitter wind
Your chapped lips and dry skin
Taste like the ocean,
Last night's soju, haemulpajeon,
Sea brine.

-A.K.-

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

1995-present

Well, goodbye, teenage years.
It was terrifying, but it was beautiful.
I hope I continue learning through other "baby adults" as time passes. Don't ever let me forget this trying and yet rewarding time in life. We grow, we change, we become truer to ourselves, and that's worth dwelling on.
Yes, I believe a "teenaged" time does exist naturally. We only use such a "category" to hold a person back when we view it as a "negative" experience...the emotions and changes of adolescence are not so.
For myself, it was a time when I learned my own sadness, my joys, my values, my religion, my interests. I drew, I wrote, I cried, I dressed funny, I learned new languages. We shouldn't look at this time so negatively, despite its trials. Without it, there would be no time to develop ourselves as adults.
That time is far from over, of course. I am not grown up yet, and I say this every year. But I can tell that time is coming to a close. For once, I feel like I'm older.
When I was born at 1:59am on Friday, November 17th, 1995, only God knew what kind of person I would be now. I have grown and changed so very much since that cold morning! If I were home right now, at this moment, my mom would be relating the story of my birth in a mesmerizing tone of nostalgia which I cannot comprehend, for I don't remember the first few years of my life. Instead, I log her memories as a way to prepare for my possible future children; learning through another's experience. It is only on the night before my birthday that I hear the story to be about ME and MY existence.
How truly crazy it is that I am both alive and have been for a decade.
40 seems so far away, yet when I consider the picture of a baby's face I do not know, dressed in hospital clothes, sitting on my grandmother's mantle, I see that I have actually come quite far since that moment.
It's a time to be celebrated, despite the changes and the unfamiliarity.
I have come so far!
Thanks be to God!



Sunday, November 15, 2015

Coincedence

I sit under an apple tree all day
Just waiting for you to fall
So I can reassess the gravity effect
Your existence has on me

When I sleep I remind myself
You will never know me, and I dream of
Rejection, so I can refrain
From wanting your embraces, your kisses

It's so cold by the florescent lights
Night comes bitterly alone
Do you love the sound of the wind?
November, beloved, returns

Starlight and empty black sky,
My patient soul is futile
Constellations do not collide,
They were determined before time itself

But were you part of mine?
When you entered this hazy atmosphere
Your playful eyes sparkling
Can we call it true destiny?

As you live out your dreams
Downing liquor on warm summer nights
Will you ever want me with that gaze?
Or am I just coincidence?

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Composition

The long winter nights reach their arms
Out to hold me in my loneliness
Your eyes--they linger, they entrance me
Do not go, for the darkness is cold,
Forget the time it was warm, in November
Like summer's dying breath,
Drinking gin in a dorm room, laughing
For what it was worth, I have only
Seen you walk home alone,
The stars in your eyes, brighter
And more brilliant, your back turned
To the world, you raise your hands,
I have lost myself in that single moment,
Yes, I am the one
Who is waiting on the empty night for you
Inking out confessions to you
As the seconds flicker by like the candle
I have lit inside of me, aware
Of the time I must come and go, therefore
I have naught to say,  but hold out
These senseless words.

Friday, November 6, 2015

8:30 AM, November

The pale grayness reaches out
Trembling by the light of day
My tired eyes absorb
So weak they cannot handle it
Seeping across the windowsill
And into my cup of coffee
Calm and easily forgotten
Are the joys of the first moments
Halting earth's spinning for a mere breath
Before the sun burns away
It's safety blanket
Piercing my bedroom
In harsh, real light
Too warm, too strong a reminder
We are still moving, we must.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Struggling to Learn: This is Hard Now

Frustrations thanks to my language studies. A long overdue timeline of my journey and details of my current (unmotivated) situation below.

I've been studying Korean for a long time. I began informally studying when I was sixteen. I wanted to learn the language through watching Korean television and listening to Korean music, with the intent to formally enroll in a class at some point if my interest grew.
As I continued to learn I developed an insatiable thirst for the language. I invested in the Byki learning program from Transparent Language, which focuses on vocabulary through digital flashcards. I brought my vocabulary to over 500 words through Byki and Korean drama. My understanding of grammar was minimal and learned almost entirely through Korean drama. I began watching videos from Talk to Me In Korean and gathering further understanding of grammar from these, but I did not study them with dedication as I did not have any desire to communicate or use complex grammar forms. I simply wished to absorb.
I will call this Stage 1 of my language development. It lasted for over a year.
I want to say, as I did the entirety of last year, that this was the best way for me to learn Korean. When I arrived in Seoul in August of 2013 at Hanyang University, I took a placement test and was enrolled in the level just above beginner. I learned how to properly write Korean letters. In an immersive environment, I learned more "how to live" vocabulary and began picking up on grammar. After two weeks of classes for 5 hours a day, I vaguely remember being able to understand more Korean. My recollection is vague because as soon as I returned to the U.S. I returned to studying Spanish for year two level courses. This was such a bad idea because instead of progressing into a stage 2 of learning Korean, I remained in a "limbo" and lost a lot of what I had learned while I was in Korea.
Nope, I don't speak any Spanish now.
Fast forward to June 2014 and I returned to Seoul for a five-week intensive language course in Korean. It wasn't immersive because I tested into a level just above beginner, basically the same level I tested into at Hanyang the year before. The first week was boring, the next four were an enjoyable challenge. Homework was optional. The final exam was not very important because I couldn't transfer my credits anyway. The only requirement was that I come to class every day; otherwise, I would fail the course due to multiple absences.
I learned so much, so quickly. I was extremely happy. I could form short sentences and my huge vocabulary from years ago was coming back and giving me an advantage.
In late August of 2014 I began my first semester at university in the U.S. My first semester I enrolled in beginner Korean, and I was bored for a few weeks, but found the new grammar useful. I could now communicate in short sentences. By the end of the semester I grew more confident in my abilities to communicate with native speakers. I could message my Korean friends and hold a short conversation in Korean. The one thing which got me was assignments; I put off homework and found studying for vocabulary quizzes and lesson exams difficult. I've always been bad at studying due to the woes of being a homeschooler, and I certainly didn't expect to come to this school without learning how to study. But studying in Korean was a chore, submitting homework was a chore. I despised it.
This "Stage 2" lasted until the middle of Spring 2015. Around April, when the crunch for finals and other classes came, I let Korean go even more. I stopped worrying about my grade in the class as other classes dominated my life. Korean itself became a chore. I stopped wanting to even study this language, and I stopped believing I could ever be fluent. For the summer, I didn't even touch a Korean textbook. I spoke English 95% of the time. I think I fell back a lot.
This began Stage 3. This is the stage I am still at, in November 2015.
I can't retain anything...what I do retain is hard to use. Grammatical forms frustrate me. Vocabulary no longer feels applicable (I can't use it every day so I forget it quickly). The Korean speakers I do communicate with on occasion are either fluent in English/semi-fluent in Korean (and will switch back to English for me) or speak a dialect (this has it's own difficulties). I realize, deeply, that I need to be putting in more effort. I need to be exhausting myself for this level of language learning. If I am to become fluent, I must put in twice as much as I am now, if not three times as much. I should be drilling myself, conversing with native speakers at least weekly, and consuming Korean like a dry sponge. I should be using my entire language house conversation time for learning. There is so much I should be doing.
But I have to graduate. This constant conflict between my major and my language is distracting. The fact that language learning is becoming a chore again, like Spanish was. I feel like I'm barely keeping up.
I don't do well with tests. I don't do well with drills. I can't learn with pressure. I like to explore and discover on my own without so many time constraints, without so many requirements. However, I still need the classroom experience. I need to learn the "correct" language. I don't want to stop studying Korean, and at this point in my university life, I can't.
I've worked myself into what I hope is late Stage 3...I spend a lot of time listening and understanding, but I still form baby sentences. In fact, it looks like my sentence formation is regressing. I've taken a teaching class, and though I realize this happens, somehow I forgot to remember how to fix it, and most professors would say it's all about waiting for your brain to catch up anyway.
I wish that I could be spending this time doing what feels natural, allowing my effective filter (hard to put a definition on this one without writing an essay, but basically how much a person can take of negative input until they overload and disassociate) to get higher. I am emotionally intimidated by the thought of speaking or reading aloud. I can write but I must be given time, prompts, a dictionary, and a grammar book.
I would love to give myself time to absorb, to learn at my own pace.
But I also can't do that. I have to pass this class. I have to pass my exams.
Learning won't be fun anymore from this point out. It won't be easy, it will be hard. Call this a fourth-year stress overload. Call it a foreign-language-learning crisis. I just want to get it over with.

The one thing I have realized is that the ESL students I work with are an impressive group. Reaching the level of fluency some of them have is a feat I can only dream of accomplishing. Though I'm suffering right now, I'll value this experience later when I'm teaching. I know what they have been/are going through.


That's all for now.

-A.K.-

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Contain

How must I contain you?
Your spirit is vast as the sea
Beating against the shores of my self
I will always remember your eyes
Searching my soul in the purple night
Drenched in the perfume
Of May lilacs and the serenade
Performed by one thousand crickets
Harmonizing with a heartbeat
Unaware, the solitary request
To enter your faraway world,
Your cheek against mine
My weary head rests
Between the space of
Neck and shoulder,
Autumn rains fill me up, they gather
In the valleys of dirty black streets
Flickering with little lamps
As another flame dwells in your
Endless dark orbs
They say I must have you
Affections do not turn so quickly
Far too many words to put here
But why?
You have owed me nothing,
Go in peace,
For I cannot contain you.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

dreamy

and I just wanted to let you know that
you always look incredible,
even in sweatpants,
stunning,
nothing can take away from your eyes
so don't ever hate them,
but by far your most beautiful feature
is the loving passionate
selflessness,
of your infinite unknown soul.


Sunday, October 4, 2015

City

Rain soaks the windows
Distorts the flood of umbrellas
In the fog, they know nothing of us,
Lights glowing in the water
Pooling on the roadside
Settling with the dirt of the city

I'm lost in your profile
Warm silhouette against the cold mist,
We are two wanderers 
Searching for our voices, in a quiet corner
Among the noise of other souls,
To God be the glory I found you,

Our hearts flutter like wings
In fear of the unknown
Through the hammer of needle and thread,
And the throbbing in our heads
We are plowing away our misunderstandings
Connecting to another world

And against the backdrop
Of a people in suffering and sadness,
Eyes meet, dark and watery
Like those puddles of this city,
Windows of hope and misery
Too close to be separated.


-A.K.-

Thursday, October 1, 2015

The Plunge

Still a WIP as I'm not sure I quite like it yet. Inspired by an overwhelming desire to connect with someone and iron out the wrinkles.

When I close my eyes
I'm standing at the edge of a swimming pool
The body of water glistens
Undisturbed,
No touch of ripples on the surface,
My hands clasped in yours
Round eyes filling with wild ecstatic joy,
Hell yes, even if you don't want to,
We are going to take the plunge because
I must see you eye-to-eye,
One moment, one instant in which
We are parallel in our desire
To breathe, the pressure
Pulling us underneath,
Surrounding,
Holding, reaching,
Grasping, we need clothes, hair, flesh, anything
In this single, straining moment
Mortality and the fear of it are more apparent
Than all our petty differences
We reach the surface or we die,
Under heavy silence, my heartbeat
Is the soundtrack of being
Soaked in your frightened eyes,
Overwhelmed when our worlds collide
Cannonball crash of our bodies
Thrown against the surface
Smacked by all of who and what and why you are
Yourself,
An assault without a perpetrator
Just victims,
Touching base, vision clearing
Feet kicking the ground, we rise
Water drips down your jaw, off your chin
Black shirt clings to skin
And the air burns like fire, and my chest aches
Lungs screaming in protest against
My foolish behavior---
Perhaps it's my heart, for I realize we are
Destined to be torn apart,
Habitually hurting ourselves,
Whenever we choose to brave the chill pain
Of our resurface.
  

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

C.E.K.

Sometimes I miss you fiercely
Nothing can appease it except a
Replay of the past in my mind
And it twists inside of me
Until my heart is a knot
Wrapped around your final image
Standing in the dining room
Flushed with warm summer light
I can't recall the details
Yet I can still see your eyes
Looking far away, avoiding me
And the heart you jump-started
Neither of us knowing
How it would be abandoned so quickly
In what way did I captivate you?
Why did you first speak to me?
The answers evade me like my memories,
RC cars and stepping-stones and
Shelves of comic books begging you
To indulge in childishness for a while, I feel that we
Set out wrong from the beginning
And yet what kind of ending
Would have been better?
I cannot imagine
A life without having known you
Yet look at us, here we are,
Strangers again
Casting shy glances across the church pews.


-A.K.-


Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Lavender

By sheer chance I have wandered,
Into a lavender garden
At twilight, with the symphony of cricket songs
I visualize and erase you,
Visualize and erase you
Until you become a distant memory of this time
Youth turned to adulthood,
Sacrifice converted to tears,
We are not yet ready for true love, so here I
Stand silently, at the top of a hillside
And I visualize and erase you,
Visualize and erase you
Until you become a distant memory of this place.

Just Beneath the Surface

There are days when I wish I had
Camouflage all over me so
No one would see this pale fear
Scratching at my skin
Clawing at my chest to be released
From the prison of my flesh
Glistening in the sunlight
Etched with blue and purple veins
Highways mapping my soul
Unstoppable, unavoidable
I am a patch of snow in the summer
More than what I lack is what I am
An unfamiliar blemish
Unable, unchangeable,
Sometimes I wish I could dissolve
Gray matter slipping through your fingers
If I could pull this skin off of me,
Trust me, I would
Should I mutilate my face
To heal your blindness?
Why do I feel like you push me
So far away
Based simply on my reflection? 

Weekend of Rain

This was the weekend of rain,
Dripping between the cracks of my consciousness,
Settling on the grass
Puddling at the roadsides
Repeating the cry of headlights
On it's trembling surface,
A quiet time for us to sleep
Drifting in with the rolling mists
Swelling up and over the mountains,
I spend this moment in peace
Lost with my thoughts
Reflecting on him and the footsteps'
Gentle pittering, tapping on my umbrella,
I close my eyes, deep sigh,
This city grows old and quiet,
Silently reaching inward
Stretching for a piece of myself
I can't grasp, but I know is there,
Raindrops on my skin shatter the chilly haze
Bringing me back to the crosswalk
Waiting for a red light
On the weekend of rain.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

The clouds drift in
Thunder rumbles, trembles, in the distance
Echoing across these old mountains
Like a far-off drumbeat

My eyes grow tired
With the summer heat and heaviness
You always laugh at me, dizzy
And so much afraid, yet not of the storm

Step softly about the house
Anticipating, leave the windows cracked,
Too fat and swollen with late August air,
Suddenly, I hear the hush of rain

In the gray quietness
I curl up on your bed
Your voice, rhythmically
Hums and whispers a song I do not know

Sleep has fallen on me
As rain hits a shingled roof
Ah, the lullaby is so sweet
You and the downpour embracing.

A.K.


Sunday, August 30, 2015

Trying to Fly

"I think I don't know at all yet...what or who I am."

This summer was one of the best of my life. I stayed home in Wytheville, my little hometown in the mountains that no one knows exists. I worked at Subway, almost 38 hours towards the end of my stay, and it exhausted me and taught me how unimportant people think service jobs are and how much I need and love coffee. I spent time with my friends, old and new, and I questioned love, affections, loyalty, choices, and dreams over and over again.
I learned how to set a car into a spin (but I still don't know how to use the turn signal), and I discovered the pain of returning to a place you left in fear and frustration. I felt the chilly breeze of midnight in deep summer and smelled the perfume of asphalt and hay on Cove Road. I dipped my feet in the cool puddles at Dismal Falls and gazed upon the crystal clear blue of Holston Lake. I saw the wonders of the quiet hillsides and the glitter of bustling New York City. I discovered that sometimes, it's the boring guy who is most charming, and sometimes, we want that which we do not need.
I prefer drifting over speeding and stargazing over sunsets, and I don't like Starbuck's Flat White. I would trade candy for fresh raspberries any day, children are more of a handful than I realized, and getting less than enough sleep will never be the end of the world (though you might not remember anything the next day). More things make me cry than they used to, more people make me smile than before, and more memories have been made than I can count. 
I'm back at school now. I'm not the woman I was last semester or the woman I was this summer in Wytheville. I'm changing, growing. I will never be that person again, and that's okay. I'm still learning how to fly. Discovering, in a unique and personal way, who I am, who I want to be, and how to get there.
Sure, it's my fourth year of school, but how does that change anything?  We're young and very, very free, and we can do anything.
So when friends come to me asking me, "how do I spread my wings?", I hope they realize that they're changing, growing, improving, and being. Don't plan yourself out of options. Don't always stay with what feels safe or what you know best. Go out and explore everything and everyone. Then you will be a bird in the sky, not a fish in the bowl.

-A.K.-

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Daniel

You will be alright
Waltzing through a rainy night
Tires go tapping the shoulders
Of tiny mirrors
Bringing them to a watery tremble
Hands shaking and eyes
Dwelling for too long
Stars murmur words
But they are too deep and low for us
Let the music fill me up
Colors and images
Freedom knocks loudly
Echoing the drone of rumble strips
You will be alright
Though by the end there are tears
We could predict them
Like a misty downpour at closing time
Or the smell of burning rubber
As your cologne
Driving too fast through the mountain
Catching pale ghosts
With headlights
And looking back too often
At the feelings unspoken
You will be alright
In the precious hours before dawn
Of all the Peter Pans
So very charming
And childish
I will remember this with clarity
Don't tremble so often
Or cry alone
Hold on a little while
For you will be alright,
And so will I.



-A.K.-

K

I hate myself for searching each crowd,
as if stares might materialize you,
beam you down
on the arms of the summer moonlight

I hope you find what you're seeking
with sad, sweet, deep brown eyes
fiery sparklers, gold
and red and purple and burning up the night

You rest a hand on your warm chest
hiding tender feelings, racing
through a beating heart
desperate for a purpose yet to be realized


In your half-smile I see a hidden self,
lost and alone, wrapped in the dark sky,
the flickering stars
tears left untouched by lovers
 
I wonder if I could let you go away,
with the chances we never had,
packed in your suitcase
of dreams you feel too small to chase.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

The Cold Glow

We all live in the city
under the gray sky
of cold wintertime
you work two jobs
and dye your hair
come in late
when it's dark
you sleep
in front of the TV
and you grab hold of me
pull me in, kiss my cheek
kiss my forehead,
I bring the pain pills for
your lifelong body aches
yearlong heartbreak
my eyes are a light
smoked up with
humid summer morning
gray as the rain
pale as the cityscape
of last night's wanderings
and I can see her
behind dusty windows
frail and pretty
as I scale the lighthouse steps
from the rose garden
where your lips
are small and lovely
cracked and bloody
what of the light?
surely she will jump
out of her skin
so I leave her to you
perhaps to kiss you
perhaps to love you
perhaps to waste away
she'll be our pain
to bear.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Rumble Strips


Where did it begin?
Somebody else could
Probably tell you better,
Because they say
She didn't even try to love me. 
Every twenty-four hours is
A new rush of my insecurity,
Faces on low-lit screens
Hands trembling, oh yes
I forgot, I'm an addict
To the adrenaline rush I got
When it hurt me, it was
A long time back, don't mind it.
Sometimes, I can't hold my tongue
You're so beautiful and I
Just want to hold you,
I'm scared of the rest so don't
Dare imagine
My frail body lying
Across from you, tonight I
Nearly crushed it
On the cold asphalt, the ride
Was terrifying and
Glorious, stripping away
All of my fears and anxiety in one
Quick jolt.
Please, I would never hurt you,
And I'm scared of all their eyes
Pulling at my body, and reaching for
My soul, if I ever die
Let me go in the quiet night,
Comfort me once more,
Kiss my lips, and
I will sleep
In peace.

My Arms

Are these frail limbs which entwine
About his body, he knows not my
Heart’s frightened drum solo,
Guilt stains, it cuts deep, it is sleepless,
It’s just culture, the empty approach.

-A.K.-

May 2015

Monday, August 10, 2015

His Laughter

To choose a single memory
Summer 2015, free and flying
Of festivals and lakes and
Flirtatious sunsets

Among the many things
Unforgettable, irreplaceable,
It would be the boy
Curled up and laughing

Hands over his flushed face
He runs fingers through his hair
Eyes sparkling in childish glee
Too strong for me, too strong

He glances at us, and his whole being
Is a dead-giveaway
Giggles spill over his lips like
A waterfall in spring.

4 Minutes

You'll become an old man
And your father, a child
My eyes burn with
This humbling reality

Hold on, please I
Can't stop you from going
Don't you know how deep
This passage of time runs?

-A.K-

Monday, August 3, 2015

For That Auburn Girl

You're a quiet reminder
Of human distance
And too many assumptions
A lot of give
And no take makes
A person miserable,
You fade out among the voices
You slide silently into the arms
Of little thoughts and wild ideas
I see it in your eyes
Glancing carefully
Crumbling in slow motion
Small, and delicate
In other's minds
In other's whispers of love
Please
Live for you this time.

Deliberately

Drenched in the blue-green light
Of a quiet summer night,
I saw his chin and I saw his mouth,
My head in his hands,
His breath, heavy like a dying man,
But he was alive
Enough to pull me into him,
Kiss me again, and again
And again,
Till the lights cry out their final blaze,
And the color fades
Slowly, sweetly,
When there's just blood in our veins,
So you stretch your body
Across the sky, while
Your chest takes in the starlight,
It was just your teeth and tongue
So honest,
With dry lips and beating hearts,
As if a sudden fog came
Then lifted.

Hit and Run

Don't go slow in your black shoes
Speeding cars will take you down
I won't turn around

Never have I felt you breathing life
Like it's slipping through your fingers
The way I do now.

If you had been caught quickly by it
No more of your beating heart, no struggle
Or suffocating humidity.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Hometown Summer


Like sparks of things burning down
On rich summer nights
Running away fast
I clutched the papers in my hand
Listened to the many voices
Smiled with the  familiarity
Born of fear and courage,
Found a prince charming, lost him,
Dreamt by starlight
And stood in the pouring rain
Before I came back here,
But I never forgot this
Or your sad eyes
These days I'm tired of
Getting talked at
I can't ever be the selfish one
If I know you so well, then why
Am I so misunderstood?


Thursday, June 25, 2015

Mornings Thereafter

On this in-between morning
Of sunlight and gray haze,
If I could find a quiet wall
To scream my thoughts into,
I would declare my confusion
And in-between feelings
For you,
And the memories of your body
My face pressed hard against
Burning skin, hot tears
Streaming down my face,
Please
Don't reject me.

-A.K.-

Friday, June 19, 2015

Old Storms

I realized I haven't seen her in a year
Like lightning at night
Striking a dormant chord inside
Every glance behind
Reminding me that I told you so
Do I miss her?
How can I be sure about it when the
Very sight of her
Body moving, figure all the same
Lithe and swirling
Makes me burn with confliction
Nothing Latin about
The dancing couplets yet I have seen
Hands like lovers
And those hands will never touch me
You don't look tortured
But of course, I never appeared scared
Of the story's ending
And I won't call this a new start for
This is just the burnout
Engine, towed home by a realist, begging
Behind the wheel
For me to shut up, calm down, return
To a time gone by,
Lost in the blur of memories, before her,
Hear now, the rain comes.

-A.K.-

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Casual Embrace

You are just a chance-defying wonder,
Drowning, so strongly weighted
That I am breathless,
Don't you realize when you go
How it renders my insides,
Mess of my own making
Craving
Your presence worse
Than the last raspberry, given
Four years gone,
I wouldn't have taken a bite
Of this poison, addictive passion
To a pretty mouth,
I never even believed,
That words can sum up calculations
Which don't exist in any way,
Shape, form, but two shoulders and tears,
And too many eyes
Flickering, like car lights
On a June night,
I can always tell every time you travel
By your scent, it lingers
A kind of simple subtlety
Which will not let me
Escape this deep resounding echo
Your voice on my mind
Never meant to stir up trouble,
Yet the gauntlet exists, words twist
In useless misery,
Felled by my new mistakes,
My dearest friend, this chest spilling over
With affections untamed,
Has found no peace nor solitude
In your casual embrace.

-A.K.-

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Wounds

If vampires existed this would be
close to criminality, you
don't know the difference between
this and that, don't try
to convince me otherwise,
You're a child with wounds
and all I want is to hear you admit
"It hurts," don't belong to such abuse
Kylie Jenner's home-made lips
caused everyone to cringe, so
why do they think this is alright?
Making claims, property and passion,
I've never seen a love so raw
since 50 Shades left a glaring imprint
on a boy's neck,
Six lights go on in my head,
somebody stop
lying to you, whispering through
purple teethmarks,
Blood and bruises, words are useless,
"Just couldn't resist this,"
So right about now you're savoring the pain.

-A.K.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Remind Me

I swore that all I'd ever see was a dusky sky
Filling with stars on a runway from here
But he looks so good this summer evening
What I'd give, I don't know, for him to be with me

I'm a writer, but my words are useless
To fight off the suffocation inside, all I sense
Are his gentle fingertips, cotton t-shirt
Head against his chest, timing his heartbeat,

Just who am I supposed to be, remind me
When he's got his arms around my waist, warm
Like sunlight I've been needing, I'm just desperate
To have a man love me, that's it, isn't it?

It must be true that people spread their self-hatred
The disease of your eyes and your skin and I,
I never felt this way about you before tonight
Drown me in some other place, far away from you.

-A.K.-

Monday, June 8, 2015

Guilt

David was a rotting sinner
Whose wrongs go through minds
Like handfulls of water, we
Don't realize who he was but
We know you, like tears
You've spilt every night, "God
why, I never meant to get
this close to damned,"
But you're still condemned, if
You don't crawl out of bed
Each morning and kiss the
Languid sun, and it sustains you
No more than the love of a liar
There is no warmth
Inside your den of guilt,
And you stopped questioning excuses
Long before you started making them.

Incheon Sunrises

Incheon has sunrises like a smokey room
Filled with warm air so wet you are
Too hot when your eyes blink open,
And the gray light seeps in
A suffocating dawn where you
Lie still, breathing shallow,
Sweat pooling in the shadowed
Crevices of your neck, your chest
Rising and falling and sticking to a gray wife-beater
But you'd never hit a girl,
You'd never touch one and neither
Do you think of them much anymore
Your hands ache with the memories
The silent stories of what you have held
And what has been taken away
The clock ticks, you bite the skin
Of your dry lips, salty and
Your eyes trace the journeys of each crack
On the ceiling
Reflecting the travels of a body
Through this, your changing world
The prayer beads on your
Wrist leave round red dots
In your flesh but
The flesh doesn't understand
How your mind rejects that faith
Like a poison in your
Very bones crying at the thought
Of people suffering, so you turn away
But when your being tremors
In stiff rejection, you whisper,
"Who am I?"
This is the way that Incheon mornings unfold,
Filling your room with empty wet smoke. 

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Lukewarm Advice

when I opened my eyes
took my first breath of a life
without you to envision
good decision
you knew what you had done
and who I had become
if you can conjugate this
then I'll hand it to you
it's been too long ago
for you to even know
and true I was very young
but you were once, too
a child with a hurt heart
grew up and found me
to break in half
with your dazzling eyes
sometimes a pity, and truly
sad you seem so lonely honey
and some nights
I need to hold you, but you know
we don't actually need
anything which we want
we just think
we do.

A.K.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Initials

Invisible, hanging above his head
On his own gallows, oh the ropes
of time and heartache, they spiral
twisted and splintered in a broken waltz
Don't you think you've heard enough
Scared and anxious, your ears bleed
the deep red of a young syndrome too
hard to break away even if the blade hurts
Just press down, pain versus pain, the grit and
willpower is better than any drug, you need it
No liquor will solve this problem, all the demons
crowd around her body and it consumes you
Why stoop so low, your father questions
but you close your eyes, give him peace,
Somewhere there's retribution,
vindication, but like his childhood hero
he can't feel what's in front of his eyes
Fold his hands, let him be silent
pray to the empty blackness
of a child's mistake, all his fault is
an adult sorrow, a blazing bulb
burns the hands which remove it
twisting, screaming, metal to metal, lips to lips.

-A.K.-

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Red Bricks of Glory

Kiss the tremulous waves as they
Creep up the dirty shores
Revealing our past mistakes, I
Let my feet sink into brown sand

You're wrapped up in your skin
No one else has that look
Red shirt, sweep your hair back
Yeah you got a watch tan coming

In my pale fear I'm tempted baby
To glide out into the dark waters
In my pale fear I'm starting baby
To think you don't love me anymore

Bet you like climbing through the deep
Appalachian mountain night
Under the canopy, Utopian moonlight
Clothe me in these misinterpretations

You're wrapped up in your skin
No one else has that look
Red shirt, sweep your hair back
Yeah you got a watch tan coming

In my pale fear I'm tempted baby
To glide out into the dark waters
In my pale fear I'm starting baby
To think you don't love me anymore

I had to try so hard to get here 
These red bricks of glory
They come at a price, long story so
Damn it all if you still think I'm stupid

Do you romanticize city light spirals
From the wings of a bird
Behold a metropolis without a word
You missed a step in the waltz of fate

In my pale fear I'm tempted baby
To glide out into the dark waters
In my pale fear I'm starting baby
To think you don't love me anymore

In my pale fear I'm tempted baby
To glide out into the dark waters
In my pale fear I'm starting baby
To think you don't love me anymore...

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

The Semester Ends...

Everyone greets me for a good summer
But I was in denial, semester's end
Does not exist, surely you would stay awhile,
Yet this cruel world carries on anyway

I will stop complaining now, good sir,
But without you, summer is long,
There is no more wonder-struck dawn
Yet the sun will rise early anyway.


Monday, May 18, 2015

Love Poem

Perhaps you rest your weary mind on the
Brilliant sunrise, bare arms against her
Flaming skin, but I beg you, darling,
Do not draw on my door with tearstains

I long for the touch of golden moonlight
Against my heart, perching on a hillside
Is your castle, but I must journey and I call
If your voice answers not, I will turn away

Does your heartbeat flash like a beacon
Lighthouse on the tumultous, unknown sea?
Cursing and beating against trembling hopes
Might it be seen, with hands outstretched?

When you open your beautiful eyes to
This great world, study the starry cosmos
And every brick in these old walls, so alive,
When you breathe, please remember me. 

A simple title for a simple poem.

-A.K.-

Fallen from Sainthood

These nights at home are too quiet sometimes
While sister drifts off, into her silent worlds
She runs to sentences as if they are a refuge

Rain is like the sky's agony thrust in my face
My ex's new boyfriend looks nothing like me
I've never been special, too ugly and stupid for her,

Honestly, if I stand still a while, my world might end
So I keep moving, just so I can breathe again
And I know the truth, but I deny it, "afraid...afraid of himself..."

Most people will never see inside this quiet heart,
Hiding broken dreams, starlight studded aspirations
"Of course, I hate cursing,", yet I still understand it.


From March 2015

-A.K.-

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Andrew

"It's simple," again, and there is no following
any steps on that guitar, echoing
through red bricks which breathe
secrets, I think history has a voice
too, unlike me who feels that
I've lost it beneath the constant
cascade of your thoughts, this is all you do
with a brain, don't say it, you won't you're
well aware that I have been chewing
my lips and boba to avoid my opinions,
I disagree with your reality and you
with mine, sixteen, sixteen you probably
were tearing up the world, driving
fast cars, I'll admit it honestly my heart
fluttered, but I feel misunderstood, even
after the soft, warm embodiment of embrace,
when your misty jade green eyes fill
with something I am learning to
realize, I'm not giving in to you
only a foolish girl would stay in this place,
for you won't change and neither
will I abandon what I believe, perhaps
I am choosing the quiet journey but
it is so very lovely, the purity of
curling up in a feeling, lost in the ocean
of knowing that I can be without
words, and I feel my heartbeat in the
silence, closing my eyes,
it's somehow beautiful to be at ease
when I see him, sweet and unassuming,
I'm not convincing myself, I'm not following anything,
I just know it.

Once a year, I do something impulsive. This was that day. Mixed feelings. I can't condense the words into proper poem. It's just this for now, I might edit later. 

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Don't You Worry, Baby...

I'm only swimming.

Wow, I can't believe it's almost over. My semester is wrapping up. I have one final and a presentation left before I am finished. I'm not ready at all, guys.
I feel like this year just started, where did the time go? I can still remember when I first arrived at Shea House. It seemed so big and strange here, and I got lost looking for the dining hall.
Now that summer is peaking out from the curtain of spring, we are all about to leave. I have made so many friends and enjoyed so many good times. I feel so overwhelmed by it all.

Of course, now that the semester is ending and a new season beginning, I feel that I am embarking upon new things which are equally big and strange, and I know I'm going to get lost looking for things.

But I'm ready for it. I'm not worried. I'm only swimming.

-A.K.-

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Summer Charlotte

Lazy white clouds are floating in
A powder blue sky over green trees
Over the glass windows, the purple lilacs
David Matthews is softly singing, "crash into me,"

At night the East Range is so quiet,
Old and burnt red, crusting away in dust
Time is frozen, my father's dwelling once
Every time I pause to feel this place, deep inside

A small child remembers little
But the colors and smells precious to her
So I have been made a child by this feeling
Once again returning, summer's smallest, quiet joys

Some say nothing good can come here
I may agree with them, on the bad days,
But I've been seeing his smile and brilliant eyes,
So impossible, but the most beautiful things, my friend,

Are hidden in the guitar's mumbling and
The sweet hum of a violin, warm murmurs
Of the trumpet, the drum like my heart, skipping
Away, oh, I need you, I need this place, if only for an instant.

"you've got your ball you've got your chain
tied to me tight tie me up again
who's got their claws in you my friend
into your heart i'll beat again
sweet like candy to my soul
sweet you rock and sweet you roll
lost for you i'm so lost for you"

-A.K.-

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

The Distant Lights

Headlights glowing through the
Fabric silhouette of a white shirt, a single word

Burning giants are flying toward
The bricks of these old, familiar sidewalks

So you live where the lights are
With the sights and smells of a small, busy city 

True, it's in your nature, I guess,
Can't get away from other souls, can you?

I see your footsteps as they
Walk away from me, and the reluctance

And those fearful eyes that dart
Away from mine, away from the dark sky

The spring breeze is warm
What's so interesting about red bricks?

Standing beneath a friendly moon
Scattered pieces of the far-off, shimmering galaxies

Just behold this glory, that's all
I have ever dreamed of giving you, so for now

Enjoy the sunsets and cloudless nights,
And find a place to drive your car, to see these stars.

Thought Cascade

Current names on how to fill out forms,
Wrap cold knuckles on the table, don't smile and
Greet me silently, be creative I guess,

Strange, just standing around alone with
Skinny legs and black jewels for blinking eyes
On the electric turquoise backdrop,

Like a new, strange numerical value
Yeah, I got it, with you I actually never know
What the hell I'm talking about

Reality is coffee-drenched
With bitter chalk built up under my fingernails,
So much for falling in love

I wouldn't be waking up serious
In bed with you at the break of dawn, cold water
On a bleak blue shirt, sleeplessness.

Charlottesville//Seoul

This city bus is such a nuisance
It’s never on time and it smells bad
I don’t care if it’s free, it’s absolutely terrible,
I’d pay the 800 won to Shinchon station
And this time I’ll not be late
To meet you, even if it’s thirty-two celsius
Your smile warms me up anyway,
From Gangnam Exit Number 7 are quiet mountains,
And despite my immaturity,
Compare your arm with mine and let me
Call you yellow, and I feel guilty
That I never kissed you, and never held you
When you were shivering in the cold
In the gray rain, in that striking black suit
While waiting for the bus
Frequent stops, no speed limit for the
Ahjusshi at the wheel, and your protective
Guidance of me, the little glances
and I never said so, but this was so beautiful.


More poems from NaPoWriMo. We're on the downward spiral and I feel like I have grown so much as a writer. Head on over to rentcollective.wordpress.com to peruse all of my writings and those of the other amazingly creative people who participated in this challenge with me.
-A.K.-

Monday, April 20, 2015

April Update: 5 Things of Lately

1. I've been enjoying hanging out with friends lately, despite the fact that finals are just around the corner and there are much more important things to be doing. There are only 11 days of regular classes left so I've officially given up on being like those structured, scheduled, good grades kids I know and am focusing primarily on survival, haha. In which case I've been spending time with my friends...isn't that a little counter intuitive? Oh, well. I will miss those who are about to graduate.

2. In the same vein, I actually saw The Avengers for the first time last night. I'm behind the times, guys, I know. Prepare for a summer of superhero movies, I guess. That and Miami Vice, at least 6 K-dramas I'm dying to watch, finishing a short story, finishing a novel, and getting a job. I don't think I'll be able to fit this all in. -_-

3. ISTJs vs. ENFJs: adventures with MBTI
Tunnel vision fears-I need manga Tamaki
I recently found myself getting very wrapped up in a handsome guy until my mom pointed out that he's an ISTJ. I finally asked him, since I had noticed the way I felt around him was super-comfortable. I was always about to burst at the sides over his stupid, corny jokes. He reminds me of my dad, grandfather, best guyfriend, and baby brother wrapped into one person. Not a bad combination, but surefire ISTJ. Predictably, my interest in him has waned. The thing about being in university is that I have had the opportunity to meet many variations of the types I have been reading about for all of these years. Despite meeting many attractive, friendly, interesting, etc, types, the only ones who seem to make an impression on me are the three ENFJs I've run into. It's so SJ-like predictable.
KYAHHHHGAFKEWIFDJKSF
Makes me wonder if there is some innate chemistry with certain types that we just can't get rid of or if I am in a kind of tunnel vision and can't see the appeal of other types. On the other hand, I'm aware of the fact that they also aren't MBTI's "ideal" type for ISFJ, so am I just appropriately deviating from the expected norm? ;)

But that aside, how does one get an ENFJ to pay them any attention? He's rather the type to wander about aimlessly in regard to love, isn't he? I wonder how my father ever got my mother's attention; perhaps by appearing aloof and hard to get. I basically appear that way without even trying, not to mention my tendency to scare all of the guys I know, anyway. I am here, ENFJs. I am interesting! I like rock music, kawaii cheerleader skirts, red wine, and soju! Hehehem.

He was so adorable (I actually liked the quiet guy in this drama too....maybe there's hope.)
Then again, I think I'm too far gone.

Let's not even talk about this...
No. Just no. WHY.

This show was practically pro-ENFJ-male PROPAGANDA. My mom really liked this show. I just kept thinking about how far gone I was. 

Hopelessness. I'm just listing my favorite romances ever in this picture-spam. 
I'll stop now. I admit, I've brainwashed myself into this fate. I even took a Dramafever "your perfect guy" type test yesterday. It was a little bit boring to read the description. I was thinking I might get something riveting this time, like "shoots a lot of guns and gets in car chases, has slicked back hair, rides motorcycle and acts like he hates you"...not puppies, tears, and art (Rain from My Lovable Girl) all over again. If I could go back and give myself one piece of advice it would be: Do not watch Kimi Ni Todoke. Your life will be changed.  




4. National Poetry Writing Month
A friend from my Korean class put me up to this challenge and I have to admit, writing a poem every day has been hard and yet fun at the same time. I missed a few days already since I have been having a busy month (what with all of the finals and term papers approaching-oh wait, did you say I need to be working on that right now?), but it id improving my writing and style. I find myself contemplating a piece a little longer (moving out of my tendency to write impulsively). I also find myself thinking "Is this a very good piece, or is it second-rate?" before I post it. I have still posted pieces I found less impressive because I believe that quantity is more important than quality in these writing challenges.

Link to our sparkly wordpress site, ooh-la-la: https://rentcollective.wordpress.com/


5. My room
I've decided I just can't keep my room in an acceptably tidy state. This ends up with me literally freaking out the night before I plan on having someone come over and despite all of my excited claims that people would come visit me all of the time when I got a single room, introversion has prevailed. Last time an acquaintance came to the language house and was within a foot of my doorstep I....well, I freaked out because there were dirty dishes, laundry, and papers strewn everywhere. I should have taken the trash out a few days before that, and I knew it.
Basically, I really need a roommate/a social life to help me preserve my last few shreds of humanity. Other option: give me Joo Won instead.


Ooooooh yeah!

That's all for now~
Gotta go write another page of that Chinese Art History term paper. My topic is Tang pottery. Glazes and styles and such, I'm rather enjoying it. ^_^

-A.K.-

Friday, April 17, 2015

Feathers

There have always been reasons, 
For my swift handshakes in the burning sunlight
Of a late August day, hot and stifling air
Filling your lungs, curious bright eyes and warm skin

You've got electricity in those veins
Could run a power plant off that magnetic feeling
So I chose to turn away from you
Because I know that you're meant to be as you are

Who in the world ever wished
For nothing but their own stability, to clip the wings
Of a little bird, who cries every night
To be free, fly away, find the longed-for resting place?

If I were to stand next to you, I know
All too well, the hypocrites who keep caged birds,
Even in the light of your brilliance
I leave you be, for the love of other imprisoned spirits.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Wall of Glass

This old memory flickers in and out
Insignificant, like the strands of your gelled hair
Disheveled by stress and exhaustion,
Sipping the proper dosage of poison on the rocks,

And I won't ever tell you anything
About how this feeling so deeply resonates
Within my chest, and leaps about
If I meet your gaze, but I will blush fiercely

"Meet me at the edge of the river,
On a humid evening, when the air warm and heavy
And the gray dust of city traffic
Will stain the sunset a vibrant, stunning red,

I need no encouragement, for
I would kiss you sober if only I were allowed to,"
But I have realized that you are
Like a rare gem, a stunning beauty behind a wall of glass.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

He Could Sing "나 돌아가"

Nothing is beautiful or interesting in life
And no one is either of those, yet still,
I get lost in a voice with no meaning left

I give up on the world entirely today,
It's ugly, and gross, and I hate it so much
That if I could fly away from it I would,

Last spring I discovered the only way,
To find myself in the stars, reaching out for them,
But I can't see the path these days

It's all lost in a meaningless tenor, softly humming
"제발 가지마..." as if a distant past version of me
Was meant to hear it and understand him

I want sweet soju and the music so loud,
That I can't grasp these carefully written lyrics,
Just the evil world disguised, in pleasant mannerisms.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Three

You, the willing stranger, eager and impressionable,
Like a puppy, with a round face and dark eyes
Peeking out from straight lashes, they greet me
And welcome me as if I know not why I came

Truthfully speaking, you're sweet and handsome,
With your stumbling words and painstaking shyness
Only half-masked beneath your love and enthusiam,
You willingly engage threatening embarrassments

Locked inside of him is an unfathomable depth,
And though I recognize his gaze, I still don't know
The sound of his voice, trapped in a small body,
Wrapped in button downs and delicate dress coats

His eyes, mysteriously distant, are uniquely shaped,
Behind which are his intense goals and convictions,
Lost in the soft sounds I catch from his delicate lips,
His rounded vowels collecting in my crowded head

And with a smile to rival all others, that one rests
In a place between these other two, a puzzling buffer
To my own snap judgements and assumptions,
For his friendliness can cut like a well-aimed knife

Leaving others feeling overwhelmed with him
He departs, packing his artificial warmth up in a box
And flying to other continents in need of it,
No note made of my dizzy silence, my weak articulations,

I would love to contain it in a simple explanation,
But I will never fully understand the human mind
Much less my own, and features of various size and color
Make the most fascinating people, anyway.










Thursday, March 19, 2015

Just a Man

Don't you ever look into eyes,
And simply see the soul, the life inside?
You act like it's always an issue, some kind of
Benefit to them or deficit to you or another doubt of yours,

Sure, he's a man, so what?
His heart is beating, he's breathing just like you
Women, who think he's some dormant monster
Nurtured by tradition to be some evil force of chaos

Can't you see him laughing?
His expressions are simply his life,
There's no hatred or presuppositions in that
Deep and loud laugh, because it's just how he is

Do you feel his movement?
Warm and open, putting away all of the
Insecurities we subscribe to; he feels them, too,
But could it actually be courage, how he ignores them?

And these differences you bring up,
Like language, words, and physiology,
They exist, so what? He's just being a man,
As if you didn't wish for him to exist as he does,

To the feminists: I think you're wrong
About remaking the modern men I know and love,
In print-screen tees, wearing conservatism on their arms,
These strong yet mannered gentlemen subscribe to the original design.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The Cherry Blossom Disease

The sunlight should belong to May,
Flowers are blooming too early,
Clothes are far too bright, too warm,
Your smile is so enchanting,

My timing is for disappointment
Like a blissful spring day too soon,
The chill and the rain will come to ruin
This moment of sweet perfection,

People somehow get lonely so young,
You sit facing me, it's such a fate to have
That I can't stop staring, you're beautiful
But your heart is too far away. 

-A.K.-

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Inland Dreams



The street light, a beacon at the end
Of this sand encrusted alleyway,
It's golden light bathes your face your
Copper skin, dancing through brown eyes

Poseidon burns with jealousy
Unsatisfied, he bids his black ocean pound
our humble shores, his lover long lost beneath,
My love likewise sunk deep into you irretrievable,

Night smells, fried food and dew
Mingle with sunscreen, your sweet cologne,
A view of distant lighthouse, you smile at it,
We shall go tomorrow in the morning,

The breezes tousle your hair, so mesmerizing,
I trust no cheap liquor,  but your soft voice
Is murmuring words sweeter than fine rosé,
Sea sprite, come closer, let me kiss your handsome lips.

-A.K.-

Spring Break {One Verse}

"Small Hands" 3/12/15

Your hands alone are insignificant
Nothing unique to behold
Losing the dead past, piece by piece,
While I become lost in you.

"Shoulders" 3/9/15

I take rest, I lie my head against
The back of the one so silent
These unassuming narrow shoulders,
Too far away to touch, to understand

"Smile" 3/11/15

How warm it is, the rising moon,
Like your long unseen smile
Growing distant, in the dark, uncertain skies. 

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Chapel

Oh, one adorned with praise, by those lost in a sea of conviction
A simple man, living a dream transformed,
Take note, these old iron gates, and your modern congregation

Every feature of yours is endearingly imperfect
Yet a simple movement sways your masses
Addressed to you, the most beloved person I have met

I the dissident reach out, piercing this bleak, cold gray sky,
In some way might I reach the deep
Twisting, unending corridors of your reclusive mind

It is a miracle, they proclaim, how great your kindness
Mirroring the sacrifice of God Almighty
But if you are just a man, with ambitions gone amiss?

Call your scripted words providential, insight from above,
Recite the role, stretch yourself to extremes,
Give of self, hate evil, change our entire universe with one love,

I eschew your social principle, and every word, every smile,
And your coffee communion, uncharted maze of your mind,
And all of the people who claim to be worth your while

The gold of your being is buried deep, you're like an empty canvas
I won't, can't, shan't ever know
More than your chapel door, so the pilgrimage is rendered pointless.




Thursday, February 26, 2015

Update: Last Two Months

Update on the last two months (numbered!) by the things I've been into/done. Enjoy!

1. Big Phony



This is definitely number one. I found this guy in my first week here while I was watching the Dan Adoption Documentary (totally worth it, if you're interested in the story of a Korean adoptee). I went through most of the songs on Big Phony's album "Bobby" on bandcamp before I even looked him up. His songs have a great acoustic/simple/stripped down/ indie quality to them that reminds me of The Paper Kites or Damien Rice. Since the guitar is one of my favorite instruments and Big Phony has nice, calming vocals, the contemplative and sad lyrics sealed the deal for me to fall in love. His bandcamp was bookmarked on my tablet simply because I went to it so much for that week.
Since I am pretty darn picky (and I guess super judgmental) I was certain the guy behind the addictive music couldn't be handsome.
But, after taking off his signature brown paper bag, the man is gorgeous, guys.
True beauty stands before you, cheap guitar in hand.
I've read most interviews and found him to be a rather charming enigma, but in true NF fashion he claims that he will never date a girl who has seen his stage persona first because that just isn't him. But I can get over the fact that he's deemed me undateable to my face, because the chance that I'd ever meet this amazing person outside of a concert environment is pretty low. Anyway, he succeeded in getting me to watch the raunchiest comedy I've ever seen-he was one of the actors in K-Town Cowboys, a web miniseries on YouTube from 2010. His character had a more minor role, due to the fact that he was basically playing himself. His interview with Danny Cho pretty much explains this character in the show: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tod81zEBRUY
"...you don't first look at her personality..."
"...I do." Gosh. <333>
My first week of school flew by because of this guy. I was wrapped up in some kind of desperation and intrigue, the kind that Nae Il gets in Tomorrow Cantabile when she first hears Yoo Jin play that piano piece (okay, maybe not so dramatic). I listened to so much of his music and spent so much of my time. Ah, my life. But, I'm so glad I found this guy, so oh well. =P
For less fangirly information, check out his bandcamp at http://bigphony.bandcamp.com/ and check out some interviews. He's a really talented guy.

2. Hogu's Love

This awesome K-drama is eating up my life. Probably somewhere in the strain of my recent raunchy comedy adventure, I am willing to admit that this somewhat off-color TVN drama is actually incredibly good so far (I'm on episode 5). It is Korean in the same way that Coffee Prince is Korean- kimchi-flavored, side-street framed, dialect-filled, and, reluctantly, motel-visiting comedy nonsense mixed with moments of some very honest social and political exploration and commentary.

3. Sanctuary



This is my most recent writing endeavor! I posted about it earlier. The story is about one man reflecting on his first (and unrequited) love, which occurred many years ago. I'm finding it hard to focus on anything other than this writing, and then I feel like I'm not doing the work any justice and know I'm going to have to edit it like crazy. Apart from that, I feel like it's a very nostalgic story, perhaps even tinged with coming-of age themes, and filled with feelings of desire, hopelessness, directionless searching, deep commitment, bitterness, and apathetic contentment. Sounds so dramatic, eh?

4. Snow

There has been so. much. snow. I didn't think that my new city would get any snow since it is in a valley and the weather here is rather mild in my opinion, but apparently February-March are it's snow months. It even snowed on Valentine's Day, which was rather magical. *-*

5. School

I am so. very. behind. U.U I've given up keeping up on readings in at least one of my classes. This school is HARD, and I believe it. As such, I lack the inspiration/desire/willingness to lose sleep to get better grades (and keep up on readings in classes about lousy overly liberal and progressive political ideologies).

6. Fox Spirits

I did a paper on fox spirits for my final research paper project in Chinese Literature in Translation. It was the longest paper I have ever written, 12 pages total, but worth it in the end. I made an A in that class.....*wistful gaze at the horizon* goodbye, my stomping grounds of unbiased ancient literature....
Ahem, anyway, fox spirits. I did most of my research on how fox spirit stereotypes were often broken in ancient Chinese literature, and this of course lead me into the realm of male fox spirits. I've been fascinated with the creatures ever since I saw My Girlfriend is a Gumiho, and so the various pieces I found on male fox spirits intrigued me greatly. As a result, I'm somewhat inspired to do something story-wise related to them, but I lack the time to do it right now.

7. Spotify

I got Spotify in December, and though it's great for artists like Prince, whose tracks you cannot find elsewhere, it's been a bit of a letdown when it comes to finding new music. I've discovered, sure, but I find that their genre-oriented playlists just leave me feeling like I have just listened to hours of the same song, and the repetitive appearance of certain popular songs make me feel like I'm listening to the radio-great for some moods, bad for others. I do rather like the ease of use for the playlist option, which also eliminates the pain of too much similar-genre content.

8. This interview:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PbEvCxWiJ3A

Onew is so precious. <333 br="">

And that's about it for this update! I could ramble on further but I think I have exhausted you all enough. =P

-A.K.-

Monday, February 23, 2015

Writing about first love...{Sanctuary}

First love smells like chestnut blossoms. It tastes like mint chocolate chip ice cream. It sounds acoustic. When the sun sets, it's in vivid orange, and when midnight comes, the moon is silver. That's first love.

So lately, my over ambitious creativity has lead me to, among other things, begin writing a short story. Yes, thankfully not a novel. I have too many projects I never finished to start (and not properly finish) another one. The plot of said short story operates on one thing: memory of first love, so I titled it "Sanctuary".
I find the writing of it to be incredibly cathartic. I think everyone who has experienced any form of heartbreak remembers first love with an accuracy other memories lack. The story itself is a memory, as recounted by the main character. I enjoy getting to switch tenses instead of POV, and emphasizing the contrast between his previous self and the now is a welcome challenge. I'm not exactly sure how to write it; I started with something of a thoughtful and quiet winter scene with a lot of thoughts interspersed, but have grown tired of the energy that required of me. I'm not sure where it's going now. In my mind, I have an outline that resembles nothing more than a skeleton sketch of pale, gray lines. That outline must be filled with my own ideas and perspectives.
Slowly, I can sense that my own first love experience is bleeding into his, and it keeps bringing out the old memories. So I have tracks from years ago in my Spotify playlist and plenty of inspiration just waiting for me whenever I need it, I suppose.

-A.K.-

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Landing in Incheon

The white, silent moon has grown bleak,
Half of a focal stone in the burning red crown
Of the horizon's slow transformation,

We descend into the cloud bank, foreboding,
Windows suddenly dripping with condensation
For an instant, I mistake the wing beacons for lightning

I feel my pulse quickening in fear and elation
Do not others feel trapped in this halfway emotion?
Shaken, this new world takes hold of me again

The warm, thick fog deceptively swirls about us
When I leave this casement, what should I do?
Instantly at peace, yet still at war with myself 

The landing, how I embrace it, over and over
Deep inside my being, recalled more clearly than first love,
Some form of reawakening, some rebirth, must surely exist there.

-Argentia Krystofel

Grandmother Said

"Find yourself a good ole American boy,
With bright young eyes and nice hair,
Who is tall and broad-shouldered,
Believes in the Lord and would never swear."

These are the words my grandmother says
In an effort to control all which she can
Her personality flaws glaring with every word
As she tries to find me her perfect man

Every mistake she made when she was young
Reiterated each time I made mention of you
"That blood is bad, mean as a stripe-ed snake,
That man will leave you up and out of the blue,"

I could shoot back pretty words, elaborate poetry,
"I believe in true love, I believe he's a good man, just you wait,"
The usual "well, you'll see" echoed in my mind,
Critique morphs into doubt, and left me in a broken state,

Irony is it's own form of justice, though heartless,
"He'll leave you for one of his own, trust me, you'll see,"
I can picture her pretty eyes, small face, and dark hair,
Faith shattered, and he was saying "you don't know me,"

One bad day will not ruin my whole life,
I'm not that woman who crashed her chariot of dreams,
Over a single rut in the road of life's journey
No turning back for broken hearts, no matter how sad it seems,

Regrets are always lined with hope
And there are things taught by lost love,
But I know all grandmother said isn't true,
Instead, in dark times, I pray this to God above:

"I want a respectful, adventuresome boy,
With sparkling dark eyes and a creative mind,
No concern for height if he's sincere,
Believes in Your promise, is both faithful and kind."


-A.K.