The creek

Photo by Mike on

I remember the sound of water. The way it slowly crashed through the pebbles and slipped through the rocks calmed me. It wasn’t a waterfall with intensive water falling from miles and miles above. It wasn’t the calm lake that remains so serene too the point of being cold. It was a little creek with water running through, soft enough to calm my mind but lively enough to know it was there.

The creek had no name. There was only one creek in town and everyone knew. Nobody needed to put a name on it. I would climb down the side of the road, and hid from the cops to walk under the bridge to go to a part of the creek that no one ever came by. There was nothing there but trees, the sound of running water and silence. I came there for the silence but the water movement made me still feel alive. I came there to write my poems. I came there to sing alone. I came there to get through my first heart break. I came there to fill myself with homesickness. I came there to take my senior pictures. And sometimes I came there just to be. I wasn’t there to be a great philosopher that trying to be part of nature. I wasn’t there to be anti-social and avoiding people. I was there to be alone with my thoughts. That little creek on the side of the road was when I figured I needed to learn to keep myself company. If there are too many thoughts and too many noises in your head, may be the way to go is to listen to them all. I liked myself because I learn to like how I think.

When I was in high school, I swore to leave that town as soon as I graduated. I did and I never looked back. But sometimes, I still think about the lively silence of that creek, about how my young little teenage years were there.

A quick write on the topic of place that inspired me. A fun prompt from Go Dog Go Cafe.


Love alone shouldn’t be enough

Photo by Andrew Neel on

I opened the door and Drew stood there with a black eye. He didn’t call before and and had nothing else with him but the clothes on his back.

“Did you at least take the train here?” I asked.

“No.. I forgot my wallet so kind of had to walk,” Drew answered as if walking two miles here wasn’t a big deal.

“Drew…” I dreaded

“Can I come in?” Drew didn’t wait for me to say anything else.

I shook my head while opening the door for him.

Drew walked in and threw himself on my couch. I came over and sat down on one end of the couch. I reached over to his knees and rubbed on them a little, like how others comforted each other by rubbing the other person’s back.

Drew smiled weakly, “You should see the other guy.”

“But I don’t care about the other guy. I only care about you.” I sighed.

I didn’t say anything else, and Drew said nothing either. He curled himself even smaller on the couch. He already knew what I was going to say.

“Drew, this is not healthy. I don’t think you should stay with..”

“I can’t. I love him, ” he cut me off, “I never loved anyone like that and probably never find another one like him. I can’t leave.”

“I don’t think so,” I sighed, “I also don’t think you should find another one like him either.” I stood up from the couch.

I brought out a blanker for him and made him a cup of hot tea. I told him to go to sleep. He needed some rest. We never discussed what happened right after it happened.

Ding dong…Ding dong…

My alarm for work didn’t even ring yet but there was already a door bell ringing. I mumbled to myself, “Every damn time,” while dragging myself to open the door. Drew had already been awake and sat up properly on the couch. He watched me opened the door.

“Hi, good morning. I’m sorry for bothering you so early in the morning,” Colin stood there with his button up shirt ironed crisply and his salt and pepper hair combed neatly to one side, “I’m here to pick up Drew.”

“Yes, of course.” I opened the door wider while still standing there blocking between him and the inside.

I turned my head to look at Drew who looked like he has been ready since who knew when, “Are you ready Drew?”

“Yeah,” he walked towards the door and hugged me on his way out, “Thanks for last night.”

“Text me if you need anything ok?” I hugged back.

I opened the door and Drew stood there drenched liked a wet rat. I could imagine he ran all the way over here in the cold winter rain. I pulled him in the apartment while yelling at him “Are you an idiot?”

I rushed to grab a towel for him.

“I did take the train here, ” he yelled after me, “just wanted to take a short walk to clear my head.”

“Yeah, and how did that go?” I threw the towel over his head.

“I’m done,” his whole face was covered under the towel when he muttered out those words, “I’m done with him.”

“For real? Are you serious?” I tried to hide the content in my voice.

Drew nodded.

I brought him a change of clothes and a hot cup of tea. When I brought him the blanket, I told him he could stay here for as long as he wanted. He was always welcomed. He nodded his head and said he might take me up on that.

The next morning, there was that door bell ringing first thing in the morning. Colin stood there, greeted me politely like usual and said he was here to pick Drew up.

I turned to look at Drew. I didn’t need to say anything for him to know who was behind the door. Drew, again, already looked like he had been awake for forever and was ready to go for a long time.

“Are you sure?” I grabbed his arm a little while whispering to him. “Drew, you always can…”

“Yeah, I’m fine.” He hugged me. “Thanks for last night,” and walked away with Colin.

I rushed over to the window to watch them. Colin held Drew in his arm and they walked together under a blue umbrella in the morning cold winter rain. The condensation fogged up my window. The image of them under that dark rainy sky was getting further and blurry. I felt so helpless.

This post is a response to the Go Dog Go Cafe’s Tuesday Prompt.


If we never

Photo by Jeffrey Czum

If we never

left our homeland

for the overglorified city fairyland,

If we never

escaped the family barn

for the forewarn urban chaos,

If we never

waved mom and dad goodbye

while crying till our eyes hurt,

If we never

abandoned the childhood friend

for all the pretend acquaintances,

If we never

made the decisions we regretted,

If we never

thought we could outrun our past,

If we never,

Would we be happier?


In another universe

Yuko was at the door. At this hour, I knew it could only be her.

“Hi Yuko,” I cracked the door open a little.

“Hi there. I thought I stopped by, cause you know…well, today wasn’t so bad.” Yuko’s cheeks blushed in the cold wind. She was shivering, shaking like a leaf.

“Come in.” I opened the door for her.

She hung her scarf by the door. I hugged Yuko from behind. She smelled like whiskey and salty air. She leaned her body on me, not saying a word.

“Where have you been?” I sniffed her hair and slowly kissed down her neck.

“Just a stroll along the beach,” she tilted her neck towards me, enjoying my advances.

“Did you drink a lot today?” I slowly lead Yuko to the bedroom.

“No, I told you. Today wasn’t a bad day…Uhm…” I bit her ear gently.

I took off her clothes. Her skin, which was already cold as ice, startled with the sudden exposure. Yuko unbuttoned my shirt clumsily. Her hands shook under the influence of alcohol. She kissed me. Her lips were salty and her breath was full of whiskey. I pushed her down the bed. She moaned. We had sex.

I was cold. So cold that I woke up. The other side of the bed was empty. I saw Yuko smoking on the sofa next to the open window.

“What are you doing? Why are you up Yuko?” I asked with a tired voice.

“Shit. Sorry. Did I wake you up? I was trying to be quiet.” Yuko apologized.

“No, it wasn’t you. It was the wind.” All of a sudden, I wasn’t sleepy anymore. I got off the bed to come over to the sofa. I cracked the window open a little wider.

I grabbed the cigarette Yuko was offering me. The fire from the lighter kept flickering. It took me a few tries to light up the cigarette.

“You wouldn’t drink with me, but smoking with me is ok.” Yuko smirked.

“Cause you are a depressed drunk.” I threw the lighter back on the table.

I took a long draw. Outside the window, from a far, was the pitch black ocean. I couldn’t hear the sound of waves from here, those little groans. But I knew they were there. The whole ocean was just there, massive, pitch black and ready to swallow anyone who happened to fall into it. It looked like a silent merciless monster lurking in the night. How could people look at that darkness and not afraid that it would get them one day?

“Have you ever heard of parallel universes?” Yuko asked. Her eyes were still staring out the window.

“Tell me about them Yuko.” I stubbed out the cigarette and lighted myself a new one.

“In another universe, just like the one we are living in, but not actually the one we are living in, there are other versions of us. They are essentially us. They look like us and probably have the same personalities too. Me, you, John. We all have a copy in a parallel universe.”

“Oh yeah?”

“But they don’t live their lives the same way we do. They make different decisions and that lead to them having different lives from ours.” Yuko stubbed out her cigarette and lighted a new one.

“So me in the parallel universe is probably happily married,” I smirked. I felt a familiar stabbing pain in my chest.

“Probably,” Yuko curled herself up, getting her knees closer to her chest, “that parallel universe John, two months ago, probably didn’t take a shit tons of sleeping pills then laid down next to his wife in bed. He perhaps just drank a cup of peppermint tea before bed. He would toss and turn a little, and then the dreams came. Simple dreams. He would just lay there being a mundane beautiful dreamer.”

I didn’t say anything. I knew it was today four months ago. Last month, Yuko didn’t sleep on that night either. She was afraid of her bed. She came over and cried.

“After all of his dreams were gone, he would wake up. And life went on.” Yuko’s voice got hoarser with every draw she took.

She paused and sighed. She didn’t cry tonight.

His life went on,” Yuko lighted another cigarette.

“So our parallel universe versions were less dumb than us,” I concluded.

“Ha” Yuko bursted out a wry laugh. “Yeah, you are right. Look how we treated ourselves like the dumb fucks we are.” She took a long draw. Her chest flatted out as if she used all of her air for that one smoke.

“My John is dead. But there are other Johns out there carrying his existence in another universe somewhere. Isn’t that neat?”

Neither of us said anything after that. The cigarette smoke filled the air. Once in a while, a wind lured the smoke out, leaving behind a lingering cold.

It was almost morning. I stood up and grabbed the Jonny Walker from the cupboard. I poured one for her and one for me.

“To being beautiful dreamers and not dead,” I raised my glass with my left hand and held out two sleeping pills on my right, “now let’s get some sleep”

Yuko hesitated. Then she raised her glass.

“To not being dead,” she grabbed one of the pill from my hand and chucked it down with whiskey.

I also chucked mine. The whiskey flowed down my throat, burning.

This was a reply to a Tuesday prompt on Go Dog Go Cafe. The prompt asked for the use of “beautiful dreamers” in the prose.


John Kissed a Girl

John kissed a girl in the alley
His friends asking if it’s dainty?
“No, wasn’t the taste of spring
More like something fading
She tasted like old memory”


I wrote a short limerick poem in response to the Tuesday Writing Prompt Challenge that requires the last sentence to be “She tasted like memory.” Go Dog Go .

I haven’t written a limerick for a while, quite a little fun writing.