My Mom’s Love Letter: Ojinguh over Fire

When I was a teenager living in the Midwest, I ate dried squid in the winter.  My mom would roast the ojinguh in our fireplace while cups of Swiss Miss hot cocoa grew cold waiting on a coffee table close by. Mary, Joseph and Baby Jesus sat on our mantel above the fireplace where she […]

Transitions are Storytellers

The summer I turned five, my parents emptied our home into brown boxes and scattered loose items throughout our garage and driveway for a summer garage sale. Strangers pulled up and parked around our cul-de-sac in small clusters and made their way in and out of our garage in waves. I watched them browse and […]

For the Ones in Hiding

I remember how the fear would thicken at night. After “lights out” I would lie still, wondering if tonight was the night I wouldn’t be afraid. Seconds later I would be under my sheets, the heat of my breath warming my face. I longed for cool air on my cheeks. I longed to be free […]

Only One Stranger

My family lived in a Tokyo suburb for my early years of elementary school. I attended an American school and we lived in a modern, pale concrete-colored bottom floor house while our landlords, a young Japanese couple, lived above us. Just a short walk around the corner was my favorite donut shop, Mister Donut, and […]

There is a Burning Bush Inside of Me

She lifted her hands to show me how small I was at birth. Her eyes bulged and she declared again, as if it was the first time she’d ever told me, “You almost didn’t make it! Did you know, you didn’t even cry?” There are those stories parents tell and retell, and by the time […]