Holes in the Heavens.

The bay punched holes

in the heavens today.

Spatters of light came

Crashing down on the

Cool grey

and it was

Uncontrollably bright.

 

The bay punched holes

in the heavens today.

I’m hoping some of those

Spirits who made it

will share with us

what they found

when they

finally left

this thick fog world.

 

Maybe the headlands

will give us a tip

because, yes,

the bay punched holes

in the heavens today,

But the mountains

were the ones who

got to see inside.

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where should we be?

the idea of college has been ingrained in my mind since i was in the womb. it’s been an expectation and somehow i’ve been lucky enough and worked hard enough to make it a reality. coming out of my first year at school, i’ve realized that college is great. especially my college. brown is an amazing place. i love it, i truly do. i’ve changed in ways that were unimaginable to me a year ago. brown has given me a lot already and i’m only a quarter of the way through.

that being said, college makes me nervous. i’m young and i’ve got a lot of things on my to-do list that don’t include visits to the library. most of my to-do list is filled with adventure plans, book plans, and of course the overall plan to keep this kind of childish duende that makes me so excited for the many opportunities that are hurdling my way.

i have a goal. it’s farfetched, extremely open-ended, and it might be fleeting. my goal is to refocus. my goal is to revisit this idea of being human and reinterpret the meaning of success. success has looked only one way for as long as i’ve known the word: a big house, lots of money, a nice car. success has been the american dream. as a child of babyboomers, i’ve seen the american dream take hold and manifest itself in a lifestyle that is hard to say no to. it’s a lifestyle of security and certainty. but what i’ve learned is that this lifestyle, as enabling as it may be, has forgotten a lot of things that i find extremely important. it has forgotten how to be simply human and has focused on how to be monetarily prosperous. i’m down with the good life, don’t get me wrong. i’m just thinking that i might have a different path in mind for myself. i know i have something else that’s ticking inside of me, and it can’t just sit at in cubicle and work for 8 hours then to go home to frozen potstickers and minute-maid lemonade. it wants to run wild, rampant, and ridiculously free.

a lot of my friends are feeling this way too. my friend dropped out of college after his first semester. he realized that college was not the place for him. he got claustrophobic and had to leave. he travelled. he went to australia, got really into a new kind of lifestyle and is a more engaged person for it. another friend of mine had the same idea. he was not at all enthused by his college world and felt it was keeping him down, stuck in a life he was hoping to move forward from. he had to leave. he went to south africa and worked with a community there that has literally changed his life. he’s a different kid. he’s a much more aware person. these are two of my friends that got stuck in the gloom of the library and had to get out. once they did, the light in their eyes returned. this isn’t for everybody, and i personally love the library, but for them, it was exactly what they needed. and now i’m looking for exactly what i need.

before i go on, i want to say that i realize i am in a unique position. i am extremely fortunate and grateful that my parents have brought me to where i am today. they have worked tirelessly to give both my sister and i what i would call an amazing childhood and a great start to the life i hope to live. i would be nothing without them. but i do think my life is going to be a bit different from theirs.

so, where am i going with this? well, i was roaming around online, stumbling about the web as i normally do, and i came to a New York Times article called ‘Forgoing College to Pursue Dreams’ by Caitlin Kelly. it covered quite a few students who realized that college can be a limiting space and decided they had to leave. most of these students are 20 or younger (that’s me). These students are Thiel fellows. i just found out about this program: it encourages people, namely young people under 20 years old, to step outside of formal education and explore ideas that excite, inspire, and drive them. Thiel Fellowship “reward[s] young people for forgoing college to dive into practical work on ideas.” what could be more exciting? the ideas of the Thiel fellowship is something i thought could only happen in a dream. college is a great place, yes, and it offers endless opportunities, yes. but it also takes time. it takes quite a bit of time that could be spent doing other things. it seems like the Thiel Fellowship takes this idea to heart: if kids could spend time doing other things, what would and could they be doing? that’s a pretty spectacular question to ask, and these kids have given them so many answers.

i’m not sure where i’m going with this now, but i just want to say that the Thiels Fellowship is an amazing opportunity. as for my next steps, i have a lot of thinking to do about the road i’m going to take with my education. traveling and exploring will be just the start of it. i’ve still got my stories to collect, and however these stories want to present themselves is however i will take them. i just need to tune in a bit more, focus on what is good for me, and begin to sketch out success looks like. i’m sure the frozen potstickers will make an appearance and a cubicle is bound to be thrown into the mix. i’m ok with that. i just need to make sure that i keep track of where i want to be, where we should be, and how we’re going to get there.

creative coding.

get rid of any kind of predetermined idea of what coding is. coding is not only for computer nerds who live in their mother’s basement at age 35 and coding is not only for gamers looking to get to the next level of world of warcraft. coding is a language that allows you a direct access to the base of technology. the rules of coding are your building blocks for digital engagement. coding is cool, man. coding is your best friend. coding is great.

imagine a world where poems are interactive. look around. you’re in it. this idea of technology has revolutionized poetry and any form of creative writing. with coding, we are in a very exciting moment in literary history. i shouldn’t have to tell you this though, it’s blazingly obvious and all around you. anything is possible with a new kind of creativity: creative coding. coding entirely changes how i, as a young writer, approach the idea of writing. creative writing is expanding and growing. now we have creative coding and who knows what will come of it, but i’m excited to find out. now, it’s time for people to keep your ears and eyes wide open. people are doing shit and getting to new places with this. listen up. look out.

there’s a new school in the works in new york. it is called the school for poetic computation (sfpc). this is a school that is focused on the point where arts and technology colide. this is a school that is looking out and breaking the possibilities of language. this is exciting.

one of the main contributors at sfpc, zach lieberman, was excited by a new project launched last year called code poems, which called for poets and coders who have been pushing the boundaries of contemporary poetry. there were 55 code poems compiled in total. amazing. i found out about the project a bit late to snag a book. regardless, it’s a fantastic idea. there’s an avenue for creative coding, and it’s growing. like zach said, they dig this and they want to explore it further. i really hope they do because i’m trying, but i’m just starting. i want to be a part of the they, but right now, i’m just running alongside; i won’t stop running. all i can do is keep thinking and doing. i can’t stop. i’m trying to break through, and coding is how i’m going to do it. coding is the language i’m learning and i’m immersing myself in this new culture until i’m fluent. i want to keep going. i have to keep going because this is where creative writing is going and i won’t be left behind.

so for now, i’m asking questions, i’m looking for answers, and i have to keep going because we, as a society, are changing and we have to keep asking as many questions as we can imagine. its time to stay alert.

[freespace]

so this week, i’m taking a social media intensive at sf state university. i was on facebook checking things out, and i saw that someone on my newsfeed had been to this place called [freespace]. another friend was freaking out. she commented with the most energetic expression of jealousy i’ve seen in a while. so i thought, what is this place. what’s it about and why is this girl so into it? i looked it up. the space was just a bart stop away from my class. so i hopped on bart during our lunch break and i was there: 1131 mission st. it’s the greatest place. no lie. [freespace] is a three-story creative space that is covered in inspiration. inspiration is oozing from the walls over there, literally. i walked in and was immediately met by a giant chalkboard calendar. these kids are doing it all. yoga, poetry slams, youth design, the yellow bike project, murals, art shows, workshops. honestly, anything even remotely creative you can think of…they’re doing it.

i was ecstatic. i had no idea what i had stumbled upon, but i knew that whatever it was, it was gold. every corner i turned, i found more breathtaking works of art. there were quotes, big paintings, collages, scribbles. all of it was there and all of it was beautiful. it sounds cliche, but believe me, it really was. i wish there was a better way to describe it, but that’s all i have. i can’t begin to give a detailed description of it without taking away some of it’s charm. each individual piece, sure, but as a whole, i’m not there yet. i have to go back. i have to see more. i have to make more there.

[freespace] is a temporary space, gifted to the community. it’s truly a gift. cherish it. we don’t know how long it’ll be here.

dear tourist.

dear tourist,

i’m thrilled you’ve come to my city. welcome. san francisco is my love. it’s a great city. you have everything you could need and more. with the new exploratorium, america’s cup, and sfmomas outside exhibitions, it’s pretty clear that san francisco is the place to be. come, tour, you’re entirely welcome. i just want to ask a couple things.

why do you have to walk at the speed of a banana slug? there are at least 4 of you. the whole family got to come. it’s really a treat to have everyone together. so i ask you, stay together. you guys are spread out on the sidewalk like you’re doing some kind of fan-dance. you’re not the rockettes. there’s no need to get in a row. get in a bunch. you’re a family. get cuddly. honestly, i’m just trying to get to work, and i’d really love to leave you to your touring, but i can’t get past you. i realize i’m a bit of a fast walker, but good god, you don’t need to stop and look at every building like you’ve never seen it before. I’m sure they have buildings where you’re from. they’re not that different, and i’m not talking about the painted ladies. it’s union square. macys looks like macys everywhere you go. the giant christmas tree isn’t up yet. if you want to go check out the square, go inside the square, don’t shuffle around it. there’re great things to be seen, but most of them are outside of union square. if you’re shopping, go shop. that’s fine. our economy could use as many of your euros as you’re willing to throw at us, in dollar form of course. so don’t get me wrong, i’m happy you’re here. stay as long as you like, just please, shuffle to the side. you’re not on the champs elysees. you’re not even on the embarcadero. go there for your stolling. it’s a great view. treasure island is pretty chill. anywhere but here. take your map with you, that’s fine.

on another note, tourist bikers, what are you doing? i’m in a car. you’re on a bike. this can’t end well for you. move. there’s like twelve of you. single file, please. there’s no need to go 4 in a row. 4 in a row and we’re back to the same problem we had with the tourist family, but now it’s next level. i know you like to bike from Sausalito to cross the golden gate. that’s a big day for you. have a great time, and i know that hill is tough, just be on your shit. once you’re in the city, roll by the marina. they’ve got a bike lane all set up for you. it’s a pretty ride and you’re off the street, everyone’s happy.

the last thing i wanted to ask is, you do realize you’re already in san francisco right? right. so why are you wearing your san francisco shirt? you’re being redundant. it’s funny. it’s cute. i just think it’s silly. take it home. that’s why they call it a souvenir. you’re supposed to wear it when you get back home, so that way you can remind yourself of what it’s like in san francisco. when you’re here, you don’t need to remind yourself. you’re just putting on a sign on that says hi, i’m a tourist. the fact that you have your nose stuffed in a map is a bit of a red flag on that front, so we get it. you’re a tourist. that’s cool.

so tourist, i’ve noticed blending in is not your thing. i’m ok with that. i actually really like you guys. you make people watching all the more interesting. i’m not asking you to entirely change your touristy ways. all i’m asking is that you reign it in a bit. be a tourist, be you, but be a bit more on your shit. just cause you’re a tourist doesn’t mean you’re not a person in a city. other people are still doing their thing, so please, step to the side, bikers, swerve over a bit more. i know you can do it. just a little is all i’m asking. thanks.

kamille

ps, don’t forget your jacket. we’re not la and it gets cold.