My Old Ladies have become my inheritance.
On Classon Avenue
As a youngster I didn’t think about how I was on the road to old ladyhood the minute I came out of my mother’s uterus.
Still on Classon
The “good night” that Dylan Thomas was writing about is some serious shit. I wake up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat because I am afraid of dying. I know I am dying.
Three Hats on the go
What the fuck.
Another summer gone, the hills burned to burdock and
thistle, I hold you a moment in the cup of my voice,
you flutter in the frail cave of the finch, you lean to speak
in my ear and the first rains blow you away.
I can barely go a day without having noodles. Can you?
Make mine noodle
I am full of noodles as I write this post. I had somen noodles for breakfast. I whooped it up with sesame oil, sesame leaf and kombu broth. And yesterday I had fettucini with artichokes and pine nuts at Quartino, a sweet little spot on Bleecker Street.
And more noodle
And the evening before we had a spot on spaghetti with meat sauce at home.
But I am an equal opportunity eater of noodles as I will consume instant noodles with just as much verve and pleasure. Treasure.
Dried kimchi flakes
I got this instant ramen bowl at a local bodega and was beguiled by the promise of kimchi. Well, it’s really kimchi “flakes” for what it’s worth. But I slurped that shit up like there was no tomorrow.
My DNA is noodle.
Noodles with Sesame Leaf
1 bunch somen noodles
3 sesame leaves, julienned
2 cups broth (dashi or anchovy)
- Fix noodles as directed, al dente.
- When noodles are done, pour hot broth over the noodles.
- Add sesame leaves and add soy sauce, sesame oil and sesame seeds to taste.
How badass my grandmother had to be to live her life.
Jiwon and Grandma, 1972
There were so many goodbyes in her lifetime: Loss of children, husband, and home.
My father’s mother
She had grit galore. The notion of “grit” has become trendy in these recent years, but really it’s what we’ve had to have in order to live through shit. Like a war. Sorry, you don’t get to claim you have grit until you’ve had to overcome bad shit.
What grit looks like
If you are claiming you have grit because you got over breaking up with your lover, losing your favorite shirt or not getting invited to brunch, let’s find another word for you: Oh I know, how’s about “pettifogging”?
and please not another sob story
about your dog, pony or wife…
it’s time you learned to grin
and bear it
-––excerpted from “Koreans in Proverbs: Expect a Petulant God” by Jiwon Choi
Louise Glück wrote that the “woman’s body is a grave.”
The Animal of Truth
You’ll get no arguments from me.
I’ve been watching my aunt sink ever more into it.
In this light
I can see the animal of truth
unleashing equal parts delirium
What can Time take
that you have not already
let go? Sight, sound, taste
returned to the next in line.
How expert you have become
in looking into the space
behind your eyes.
— “Animal of Truth” by Jiwon Choi