sand, 3

1999 Southern California There was likely more that my father wanted to say about Lana being there. The fact that he didn’t say anything was an indication to me that whatever was going on with my grandmother was serious. “Okay, I’ll be out in a second,” I said. Lana had pulled on her shorts. She … Continue reading sand, 3

sand, 2

1999 Southern California “Sophie? Finished studying, finally? Cleaun thdei, kohn?” My dad called from the living room. Are you hungry, child? He always asked whether I were hungry. That was the Khmer equivalent of “How are you?” and “I love you.” “No,” I called back to him, “Lana’s here, we’re going to study some more.” … Continue reading sand, 2


1999 Southern California It was another hot summer day. We drove down the highway with all the windows rolled down, the ocean spreading out to my left as my hair whipped around my face in the passenger seat. Music blared from the stereo. Lana had made a new mixtape. Grungy love songs. I closed my … Continue reading sand

flight, 4

2002 Pacific Ocean “Okay.” I turned around and walked back down the aisle. Lakhena slid the book she was reading into the pocket in front of her and tucked the stack of books under the empty seat.  She called me ‘oun’ because she thinks I’m younger than she is. That’s all. Age is always a … Continue reading flight, 4