Thankful

thankful thankful for so much today it overwhelms me. it bowls me over.

for my words, above all, & for all of the places they've taken me. for hachii. for christmas carols. for friends who understand. for movie theatre popcorn. for pet names. for times when the whole audience laughs at all of the jokes in a performance & you can feel the actors glowing. for long walks home. for books shelved by height. for well-written female characters. for air plants. for warm cookies. for clouds. for bad puns. for creative 404 error web pages. for five-minute hugs. for great improv rounds. for these flowers that my little sister took a photo of & sent to me because they reminded her of me. for red lipstick. for times when you throw something from across the room & it lands perfectly in the trash bin. for car rides. for rain. for people who notice when you're away. for scented candles. for free periods. for music, music, all of the music.

thankful for the fact that last week, i learned that i was a finalist in the 2017 youngarts award for poetry... a prize awarded to some of my favourite writers in the world. like jenny 8 lee. sam lipsyte. john ridley. allegra goodman. josh groban. thankful that my words are part of something so shining, so big & beautiful & bright. thankful that i'm headed to miami next january as part of a week-long masterclass, where i'll be mentored by more of my favourite writers & get to meet friends who have brought me so far in my poetic journey.

thankful that today i woke up & found out that at 17, i am the youngest singaporean ever to be nominated for the pushcart prize, the most prestigious literary publication in america. (not just thankful, but also... sort of in shock. may have cried. may still be crying.) thankful that hypertrophic literaryone of the most beautiful independent literary magazines i know of, nominated my poem "the wolf pack welcomes november" to be featured along with five other incredible writers' work. thankful to be part of such a good, true legacy.

thankful to be here, mostly. thankful for hope despite everything. thankful for hope because everything. thankful for kindness. thankful for spots of brilliance in this dark world. thankful for warmth. thankful for presence. for the people that stay.

&... i am thankful for you. for the stories you tell simply by existing. for the stories you are.

i love you & am so glad you are here. happy thanksgiving. you are enough. you are so enough, it is astounding how enough you are.

xox