Hello! I am one semester away from graduating with my English BA. I work as an informal STEM Educator and Writing Tutor. I like to write and get my thoughts out in my essays and short stories. Stay tuned :)
Illness and Isolation
Kafka's "The Metamorphosis" and Lu Xun's "Diary of a Madman" both follow the plight of illness and disability as the main character suffers from a sort of illness, alienating themselves from their families both directly and indirectly. These short stories delve into isolation caused by mental illness and disability, how that affects the main characters, and how their friends and family see them.
damn it damn it damn it James paced and paced back and forth, swearing and cursing the entire time, much to his daughter's dismay. She could not escape her father's ramblings in the confined space they shared, so she settled for backing herself as far into the wall as she could, making herself small in the process.
Greif Hidden in the Margins
Hai-Dang Phan's poem, My Father's "Norton Introduction to Literature," Third Edition (1981), travels into his father's past world that had become long forgotten. The speaker writes about his Vietnamese father, who went to college to get a job upon coming to America. Through imagery, tone, and diction, Phan paints the picture of a loving father with a disconnect from his father then versus the speaker's life now.
Something Lurks Beneath
She spread her toes in the white sand, feeling the heat run up her legs. She loved to just lay there in the sun, soaking up the heat as a lizard would. She remembered laying in the sun with her little brother in the backyard in the summer. He would always burn no matter how much sunscreen they would put on him.
I am writing this as a half-white woman who knows I have privilege. As a Mexican, I see my brown people facing similar issues. As a white woman, I am sorry. I am so so sorry for the society that we live in. To Black and Brown people, I am sorry that you have been tossed aside and been treated as "other" for your entire life. You important, valuable, and worthy of love. I am sorry. Derek Chauvin may look like justice or accountability, but it is only because the world was watching. A majority of police are not held accountable for the people they have killed.
In April of 2020, my elderly Persian cat had to be put down because of all the pain he was in from not functioning anymore. For years, he was loved by my whole family, coming to us when my grandmother became too old to take care of him anymore. 2020 was already a rough year, but on top of Sonny's passing, the whole house was down. Our two-year-old rescue, Blinky, who we had found at about six weeks old abandoned in the middle of an intersection, was lonely and depressed with his grumpy friend now gone. Blinky would wander the house for Sonny before settling to watch the birds by himself.
The Cult Cafe
Cheyenne was always told not to go to that cafe. The cafe on Rose and 5th was supposedly owned and run by a cult. Of course, this was all a rumor. In reality, it's just run by vegans, so of course, the older people in town were scared. Cheyenne thought it was refreshing to see some modern ideals in her small town. Although, they were still a little too out there for her taste.
Lower Class Women
While the plot of Tartuffe is about Tartuffe himself bamboozling Orgon's upper-class family out of their house, a few characters have to fight against him and Orgon because they simply know better. Tartuffe bamboozles Orgon and his family by feigning piety and winning over the head of the household. This comes with the cost of the women in the household having no say in life-altering decisions. In addition to Tartuffe's scheming for money, he also attempts to seduce Orgon's wife and marry Orgon's daughter. Tartuffe's lust for women and money drives his interests, but with Orgon being the person who controls both, everyone in the household is surely doomed. However, all the women in the play do not fit the role of quiet and obedient women. The women in the play resist the roles they are given and work to make sure that their lives are secure.
Sleep paralysis had always been a common occurrence for Winnie. It used to scare her as a child, but over time she got used to it. It was more of an inconvenience than a real issue. Sometimes she couldn't physically get up and would be late for work or school, but that did not happen enough for her to get written up or lose her job. So it was fine.
A Quarantine Reflection
A year ago I was sprinting across my community college campus to either get to one of three of my part-time jobs or to get to class. A year ago, I was the most exhausted I have ever been. I was averaging approximately 4-5 hours of sleep per night and living off of free coffee in the Teacher Preparation office to get me through my day. I would tell myself "It's normal to feel like this and work myself this hard. It's normal to feel miserable at the beginning of your twenties, right?"
Wake up. Coffee. Go to class. Do homework. Go to bed. Repeat. I woke up and had my coffee. I met Jazlyn at the café on the hill on the way into campus. The warm bitter air rushed over my skin as I stepped in to the café. Jazlyn was already sitting at an empty table with two coffees. She was all bundled up in an oversized sweater and a coat on top of that. I was jealous, because I forgot to check the weather and was only wearing a t-shirt under my own coat. Jazlyn stood as soon as she saw me and handed over the coffee.
I am ending my last semester in community college right now and I am happy to move on, but it is bitter sweet. After two and a half years of constant support from the student services and my employers on campus, I am going to miss my first college. I was accepted into the four-year college I have been wanting to attend since highschool. My aunt went there, my boss went there, and my friends attend there currently. It feels like my life is really beginning. Now, do not get me wrong. I am not your typical college student. I am 20 and still can not drive and I work a maximum of five hours a week because of our current pandemic.