Young voters

Young voters

When Chu Qiu died in 2016, she had only been on Northwestern’s campus for a few weeks. She was struck and run over by a cement truck when on her bicycle, turning onto Sheridan Road, which runs through Northwestern’s campus but is owned and administered by the City of Evanston.…

Musings from a new city

Musings from a new city

Washington, D.C. is beautiful.

It’s strange to be in back in a city after being absent for a few months. Everything is familiar, but in a slightly disjunctive way. Last time, I was speeding past the empty gardens along the Red Line during the winter, but in May, the gardens are lush, flowering, and full of bushes and branches that obscure my view of D.C.’s street paintings and more.…

ACK, a poem

hello? are you there?

hey! i’m here! should we talk here?

yeah, this is fine.

by the way, could you share that file with me?

sure, here you go.

oh, here’s another bit.

and another bit.

ok, this is the last one.…

Chat archive

Chat archive

I just discovered my WhatsApp chat archive. Since Northwestern, I’ve not had a reason to use it.

Opening it and reading the messages was like a blast from the past. Everything had been carefully preserved by the chat app now owned by Facebook.…

An attack on us all

An attack on us all

An update

Further news updates since the publication of this post have indicated that the story was fabricated. To abuse our sympathy, loyalty and kindness for personal gain is a grave insult to the many people who work hard to protect and stand up for people like myself, who are at risk of targeted persecution, mistreatment and violence.

distance, a poem

distance, a poem

There are some things in life that are absolute.

Death, for example
    death and taxes
      and the speed of light, I guess.

but some things are much more relative
like space
    and time
        and whether it’s true that you find me cute, funny and attractive, all at the same time.…

magic bean juice, a poem

magic bean juice, a poem

this magic potion keeps me alive.

i remember the first time that i drank it.
drink this, he said. you’ll feel better.
i should have stopped
— I knew the risks, the pain, the effort —
i knew that it was going to hurt.…

new symptoms, a poem

have you developed any new symptoms
she asks with a gentle smile.

i smile back
just a little.

I’ve been feeling a lot better
i say; which may be
true or it may be a lie

what do i know?

The truth is
it has been so long
since i have felt good
or bad
or even just better

that i don’t even know what that means

we apologise for the inconveniences, a poem

Attention please.

Inbound train number
three. three. six.
is operating 15 to 25 minutes behind schedule

due to

positive train control issues

to accomodate boarding passengers

a lack of regard for the well-being of our customers

the systematic underfunding of our capital budget that has made maintenance difficult to impossible

the continued public subsidy for Americans to operate private cars instead of other means of transport

We apologise for any inconveniences caused.…

your attention please, a poem

your attention please
your ventra card may be expiring
so make sure your rides

Do it. Jump. It’ll be over soon.

register your card online at
Dot Com. …

About this $1,800 drug

A claim for pharmacy services through Aetna reduced the drug's cost from $1,752.03 to $30.

I would not have been able to afford this life-saving drug without health insurance.

This $1752.03 drug is Truvada, the brand-name antiviral medication manufactured by Gilead for pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP. The FDA-approved medication greatly reduces the chances of getting HIV — by as much as 90 percent, according to the U.S.…

love in your dreams, a poem

you’ll know you’re in love when you don’t want to fall asleep, for reality is far better than your dreams.

he said.

then i would say he doesn’t know me very well.

Queer libraries

Queer libraries

Libraries are incredibly queer spaces. I don’t mean queer in the sense that they’re LGBT, but in the sense that they challenge the normative structures of society: A library is simulatenously radical and queer in its nature. Situated in the cities, towns and villages across the country, the library’s free resources are a promise to the citizenry: Come here, and you will have access to information and knowledge — the things needed to live a free, liberal life.…

rose-tinted fries, a poem

He stepped into my world one day
or maybe I stepped into his
I don’t remember.

but what I do recall is the sweet
greasy, buttery, oily fries of those Five Guys
the burgers dripping into the rose-tinted air.

Like so many others, he was unremarkable
in the most memorable of ways
Just another guy who stood by himself within the crowd.…

All good stories begin in a bar

Today, I shocked an editor at work with my stories of drinking while under 21. I told her I had lived outside of the US. Then I realized how incredible that moment was.

She was the first person who saw me and didn’t assume I was from somewhere other than the United States.…