A second book of poems | Purchase book here

I wore a lotus flower charm around my neck for most of my high school career. (And no, it was not a ‘pot leaf’ as some, perhaps jokingly, assumed.)

I wore that necklace to remind myself there are ugly, dirty, and terrible realities about this life – the mud in this lotus analogy – but beautiful blossoms can somehow still rise above the darkness and into the light. I equated my recovery from mental illness to a lotus blossom desperately in search of this light.

The lotus flower has symbolized transcendence, rebirth, and resilience in various human contexts throughout time and place, perhaps most notably in Buddhism. Nature, I have found, provides us with these personifications of personal development; we just have to be open and curious enough to interpret them as such.

I have selected this collection of poems to reflect the turmoil and ascension, the rise and fall of my recovery over the last 7 years. My writing, I’d say, has gotten bolder with both age and experience. Unapologetic, like a cup of dark-roast coffee – no sugar added. My emotions are raw and real, and I have been nothing but honest in these pages.

Life is a journey. Life is a battlefield. Life is a delicate balancing act that sometimes causes us to wobble and misjudge the plummeting plummet to the ground. But I’ve learned how to pluck my fallen self up – from the mud, as it will – and return in constant pursuit of this light.

With sincerity and admiration,


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