Vassar Student Review

Vassar Student Review

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a name that

belongs to me

in a language

which does not

belong to me


i can’t even

recognize the characters

of my own goddamn name

one that pushed me out

into the world and

abandoned me

on the streets at 11 months

only to reappear

in government agencies

when they ask for

my full name

because all they see

is my skin

my hair

my eyes

my birthplace


they question

my citizenship

my americanness

my identity

as if they are the first

to wonder

what i am


they’re not


at 10, i lay awake

wondering if

i was white enough


at 14, i lay awake

wondering if

i was chinese enough


at 19,

i am too tired

to care



you have chased me

for my entire life

but i’m done running


now i turn back

open my arms

and we collide

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