The lightness of a body

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this is a rant and very sad but i think it needs to be preserved here for some sick reason.. happy senior fall, if i make it the next few weeks

Even on paper,
I can’t do anything right.

Capital faggot means
sleep drowning in the idea that you shall never love.

That unlove is self-preservation.

Would I rather secede for centuries
in safety? Would I rather love for a moment?

For a decade I stick in a blunt pencil
to change the channels on our television.

(The button/controller/whatever was gutted inside,
so you had to stick a finger in and feel through wires
and wires and wires and wires until you could touch
the lever to turn the volume off.)

The big box set television where I watch the same movies
for years and years on end. When I love something I want
it repeated over and over, because I know that one day
it could stop.

Each movie I owned as a child,
I probably watched over thirty times.

One day the broken in box set fries my finger when I try
to turn the volume down.

I never turn televisions on anymore.
The last time I watched TV I was maybe eleven?

Since I was in middle school,
I taught myself to eat a meal a day.

Still you grow so much that everyone thinks
all you do is consume.

We fight over $60,
the cost of 6 operations and hands at the death of mine,
the cost of 6 months or so of waiting––
I fight over $60 in the footsteps of my university
with a $30,000,000,000 endowment.

I have not been touched in four years.
My parents still don’t know what I do at my job.

The promise of an elite institution is to work
with the greatest minds in the world. I am fueled by
spite; by the fact that nearly everyone here has it easier than me
has it easier knows the way to talk and speak up in America
and get the good jobs that I stumble upon.

The promise of an elite institution is that
you will uplift your financial bracket and join
the likes of the richest of the rich. (And that at Yale,
you don’t feel like you’re poor, because here,
people are rich but don’t show it, it’s different.)

And I’m so proud of everyone around me, getting jobs and getting paid more than I have for the work I elevated them to do so––

and then the me, counting bills, my heart bursting out of my chest
everytime I dare get a moment of rest.

What does it feel like when you earn more than your parents
but less than any of your friends.

This is self-pity bordering on the delusional,
but I have every reason to be fueled by spite––
despite, not because of.

They say that money has no effect on the college experience.

And when I sleep 30 minutes every 2 days,
or sip back the puke mixed with cup noodles,
or haven’t had my period in eighteen months,
or leave buildings at 10am from the night before,
and ignore every warning sign-–
just as they taught me in the Philippines––
I am alive.

I understand why shelter is a human necessity.

How inane am I to be desperate to live in four walls I can call my own,
without strangers banging on the fucking door,
to want to see something I own outside of a box for more than a week.

Imagine getting a scholarship and having to pay even more to your school, as if the world said the more you do the more I take away, the more you think you undo generations worth of burdens you merely fasten the pain, that every wound you have tore at the surface is one you must leave a deeper impression on.

The kindest people are battling, choosing amongst the lesser of all evils. All of this is evil. All of this is preying on the POC, statistic, where can we get someone who refuses the defense company but settles for the less explicitly evil surveillance giant who decimates your country.

All of this is about not working at fucking Palantir or Github because it’s more morally acceptable to talk about RSUs from Facebook or Google, because they are the lesser evil absolved from the “tech for social good” bullshit coalitions formed by Ivy Leaguers (the virtue signaling kind) holier than everything.

I need to dream of labor because
it is one of the only guaranteed paths to salvation
I have.

When my parents meet the other Filipino parents from Yale University, they drive into the most luxurious golf course in the heart of Manila. The lush greens bloom, a stark contrast to the urban poverty outside the streets. International School Manila kids take naps in the lobbies and Filipino-Filipino kids sleep on cardboard next to grave markers.

After dinner, my dad heaves in the parking lot; takes pause before he drives hours back home-–too overwhelmed.

“I’ve never felt poorer in my life…”

This was supposed to be the dream?

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