The Mirror of Hate

A Light Circle

“What are you?”

I get asked this question all the time, wherever I go. “What are you?” I grew so tired of hearing it that I once answered on a whim: “Guess.” The man who had asked me proceeded to list off all the Asian nationalities he knew of: “Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Indonesian, Indian, Mongolian…” It was around the tenth guess, that I nodded. Oddly, he was not satisfied with my answer. To be honest, neither was I. He looked at me incredulously and walked away. I could understand his disappointment, perhaps he was hoping to achieve some sort of confirmation for his painstakingly-built system of racial order. At the very least, he made a good effort to pin me down.

In all honesty, I don’t really know what I am. On paper, I am a two-time immigrant, my husband is also an immigrant and my children are even…

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