This is an ode to everyone neither here

nor there. This is an ode to indecisiveness,

To every high schooler stuck between two

cliques, one foot in each comfort zone, head

Hung, equal parts literature nerd and

Wannabe prom queen, hands raised, equal parts kosher salt and

Cumin, feet tapping, equal parts Asian and

American, eyes raised and glaring

like ink.


Here’s an ode for every crisis, every

Piercing bout of loneliness, every

Moment of recovery, the equal and opposite

Force of joy, the unexplained sense of emptiness

Despite every objective standard that dictates

For you to be a Happy Person.


Happy Person.


Here’s an ode to the gray area that covers the tabletop of your

Identity and spills over to your friendships.

Like December 27th. Christmas passed and

Deflated, a New Year just about to come,

Never quite coming.


Here’s an ode to that year that never comes.

An ode to the success you never quite reach,

The family name you never quite live up to,

That part of yourself you never quite learn to love,

An ode to every incomplete hobby and mediocre talent,

Because they, too, deserve celebration.

Here’s an ode to being half-baked, and choosing to remain that way.

We are emerging from the mold,

No, we are not fully formed,

We are dancing in the mist of our uncertain sighs,

Awkward limbs and cheap lipstick and all.