in spite of time and place

On a train during sunset (June 2021).

This time is the longest time I’ve stayed here, albeit in an indefinite state of transit between where I was last March and where I thought I’d be by last September. A few months ago, during the latter part of winter, I was at a nearby cafe to work. I looked out the window at the main street and saw the usual fruit truck, some elderly ladies, the busy bank, and schoolchildren going to and fro. This is when I remembered that just across the road is the first home I ever lived in.

I was born here but didn’t…

A short reflection at the end of a not-so-merry year

Taken during a long walk last month.

In one of the biblical birth stories of Jesus, baby Christ is born amidst genocide. The king of that region (Herod the Great of modern-day Palestine) orders all male infants to be killed upon hearing about the birth of Jesus, whom he hears is believed by some to be a new “king.” (This is why Mary and Joseph flee their city with the newborn and become refugees.) While Herod’s infanticide may be legend, I was reminded of it this past week and was struck, as this illustrator so aptly put it, at how Jesus—divinity in the body of a human—was…

On flowing with sediment.

A shot from Seoul in the summer (2019).

There’s something sensual about fabric re-meeting familiar areas of skin, places that haven’t felt cold in a while––mornings and nights in late August when cool air flows through open windows, and you instinctively reach for a cardigan to wrap over your bare arms––a reminder of our undeniable materiality, perhaps. Spring to summer was likewise corporeal: glorious sun hitting shy, pale shins, shaking up cells from their slumber.

The brevity of these transitional temperatures reminds me of other faithfully ceasing times, like that rainy night in Vietnam when I rode a motorcycle for the first time in my life. After dinner…

Why I stopped writing, how deconstructing faith affected it, and why I want to start writing again.

My shadow on a blank white wall of an art installation.
My shadow on a blank white wall of an art installation.
At an art installation in Barcelona (2018).

I used to be obsessed with words. One favorite was dusky. I’d picture it describing a hallway of your home. Imagine waking up from a nap to a dark blue room. You turn your head to the window, but the sun has left. And where is the moon? A clock ticks from an indiscriminate location. Your body rises and moves into the hallway, blankly stepping across the carpet. Dusky is that hallway.

Even today, that word wants to be somewhere. I never found a good place for it, whether on its own or before a noun. For example, a dusky…

Hyejoo Lee

Moderately percolated thoughts.

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