Jazz Kiang is a fourth year undergraduate student at UCLA majoring in Asian American Studies. He currently serves as the Chairperson of the Campus Retention Committee and has previously advocated for Asian American student issues as a former director of the Asian Pacific Coalition.


Title: (Still) Untitled

I’m capable of anything

Nas’ imagination gave me wings to fly like doves

Not over streets

But over ringing campus bells that have hooked my opposing gaze


You walk past me

Like invisible spirits of a Miyazaki movie

Only introducing yourself when the sun conveniently sets its bright gaze


You are class privilege

And a passerby I may never meet in public


Because somehow

We wish sunsets to suspend themselves even at the cost of someone else’s sunrise


Because somehow

Proposition 209 has shepherded our minds back into Plato’s caves of individualism


Because somehow

Our radical imaginations have yet to improve the silenced poverty of our peers


Pass onto me your bravery

So I can bypass the hurdles of insecurity that you once used to grapple with

Because somehow

My wallet has bought into this too


You are the Burberry fabric I wrap like a noose around my neck

Lauded for beauty but really just a hanging execution by European bourgeoisie


You are the inferno Nikes I trudge in

Splashing muddy ignorance of the needled hands that Asian children half my age “just do it” with


You are the jasmine scent from 20-pound bags of Buddha brand rice

The choice of life without deserts of only high fructose corn syrup


You are the sea breeze during the walk to the ATM every first day of the month

Spotify Premium in headphones deaf to the clangs of nickels grandparents trade bottles for


You are class privilege

And the self-proclaimed progressives have tried to hide you


I’m capable of nothing

If my imagination passes without these wings


You are class privilege

And I have you


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