Kika Man 文詠玲 (she/they) is a writer from Belgium and Hong Kong. Kika writes about her mixed heritage, mental health, and traveling, about blueness. She is a member of Slam-T and also a PhD Student in Queer Sinophone Studies. You can find Kika on Twitter and Instagram @kikawinling.
Magpies don’t sleep either
Nobody could sleep because of the red moon, nobody
could sleep because the ebb and tide of their bodies made their toes flee
and fingers cramp.
I am in a psychiatry ward and I bought an avocado to cheer myself up,
it stayed with me through the nights, did not cry
when I ate it.
In the morning I simmered in two cups of coffee, overlooked a magpie eating worms and my body
started to thrum so hard I could not carry my platter of curry to the table.
Falafel on the ground.
I fell on the ground. Can you
Harmonising with the ground, the ivory hitting perfect keys.
These halls are not roamed by zombies
but by funny people, talking people, running people.
Nobody could sleep but here I am,
going to bed at ten pm and waking in the early hours.
My dinners are avocado wraps and beans in tomato sauce,
non-sad food that makes you gain lightness in your days.
Not the sad that put me here.
Not the claws of the magpie that chases me, attacks me and never leaves my crow’s nest hair.
A mindful bird breathing the blood
of the broken moon that lost its one love,
a bird that will find its own reflection singing
the stories of the people we have forgotten
The magpie lives in my room.
Falling asleep to Arvo Pärt’s Für Alina
I write when the night falls upon my feet,
drifting in and out of consciousness
like the ocean that swings up and down, back and forth..
Writing to breathe and splitting strings to let my gut flow..
My companions, piano keys,
turn into trills of tears bursting out my eyes.
My fingers turn sad, stiffen in the coldness of these vast lukewarm waters,
growing numb. Especially my thumb after it crumbles the latest medicine,
pills intensifying the fire down my throat.
These sounds echo in an empty room,
solitude rises to my knees as I wade
through to my bed.
Every breath in, a spill
of blurry vision watering the floor as I drown.
When I exhale,
my breath tips over the end of the universe and my eyes close,
as if blinded by the light
of a dying star.
In my drunken stupor, my pillows left
me, slipping into someone else’s bed,
I now sleep with nothing
to hold. I can feel
the sadness knocking on the floodgate
of this door, locked with water
on one side. Cries muting my eyes, even sound
has left my bedside table.
Kermit as a queer comedy icon
Imagine a frog,
drunk on painkillers, ready to be spiked to the wall.
A frog so nervous,
they squawk. They scream at the latest
cupcakes of horror.
Imagine a frog so green, it poisons
itself. existence pointless.
They are isolated.
Drunk, alone, sitting on a bar chair
across from their own image cloaked in black,
saying do it.
This frog so nervous, they cannot sit still
when listening to slam poetry and getting tattooed
heralding their oddities.
This frog is queer.
Imagine a frog so gay, it will reflect rainbow colours
in a politically correct manner.
A frog angry at politics and exclusionary statistics,
policies broken down in long tongues
that turn insects into nutrients.
Their name is Kermit.
They are a comedian.
They are an icon.
From the Editor:
We hope that readers receive In Parentheses as a medium through which the evolution of human thought can be appreciated, nurtured and precipitated. It will present a dynamo of artistic expression, journalism, informal analysis of our daily world, entertainment of ideas considered lofty and criticism of today’s popular culture. The featured content does not follow any specific ideology except for that of intellectual expansion of the masses.
Founded in late 2011, In Parentheses prides itself upon analysis of the current condition of intelligence in the minds of these young people, and building a hypothesis for one looming question: what comes after Post-Modernism?
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