Nativity Scene at Pacific Star
Spiritual Reflections

Then I Could Wish You Merry Christmas

I stare at the ATM display screen. My heart leaps. Finally, I can pay my bills! But just like a beautiful falling star, it fades away. Just barely enough to pay the bills. There goes my Christmas plans.

I stare at the computer screen, browsing through posted Christmas photos. People and pets in costumes, nice and odd presents, and food. Lots of food. I try not to be envious. I wanted to sour-grape, but even that is something I can’t afford.

I grin as I overhear an officemate’s Spotify play an old song from Christmas with the Chipmunks album. I sang along as the crittery caroler crooned about his lost two front teeth, as it brought me back to a happier time, a happier Christmas. Continue reading

Short Story | Fiction

A Parable For The Lost

It was almost 10:00pm. Elsewhere, people spent the night with friends and families, or resting in their homes. Others were already on their way, albeit stuck in overcrowded buses or jammed roads; still, they’re on the move — unlike us, still waiting for our own ride. Unlike me, simply watching each bus pass me by.

A taxi glided towards me, rolled down its window, and waited for an offer. I tried to ignore the expectant face behind the wheel; I’ve learned to distrust their service, even when I understood their plight. I couldn’t tell what the driver thought as he drove past me; eager passengers had already raced towards his vehicle. A few frustrated people cussed at the taxi driver, but it didn’t matter; there was one less competition in the waiting shed, one less rival to a decent ride home.

And I just wanted to go home. But not right now; not right away. I was tired, but it was not as tiring as spending the nights in abject solitude. Amidst the standing crowd of stranded commuters, I didn’t felt alone. And soon enough, I felt satisfied, reminded fully well why I often chose to be alone. Continue reading

Short Story | Fiction

The Tribe of the Forgotten

The night was empty. Not a wind, not a chill; pale crescent glow bullied by greedy clouds— they’ve devoured even the twinkling lights both manmade and divine. These days, a curse seemed to have encroached on me, a lich draining all the joys that was supposed to be mine on evenings like this.

I watched the shadows lazily stretch and dance with each passing vehicle, headlights attacking me as I strolled the dark street. I just wanted to go home, take a bath, eat something cheap, and soak on the artificial happiness that is falsely promised by modern technology.

Something caught my attention as I approached the street corner. Whether it was intuition, or simply resonance, I glanced. I knew it before it made itself known: a kitten, weakly jumping out in innocent hope that I was kind, or kind enough. I wondered about that myself, wondered why I find more humanity in empathizing with a stray animal than noticing the filthy creature that was supposed to be human huddled among the pile of trash and junk.

I passed by without a word, without another glance.

The night was empty, and so was I. Continue reading

Spiritual Reflections

The Battered Charge


“Hey, do you have an iPhone charger?” one of my bosses asked. Without a word, I sheepishly showed her my Nokia phone.

Months ago, I had a similar problem: my sister was about to lend me her DSLR camera, but she couldn’t find the battery charger. It was an old model, but I thought hey, it’s Canon— I’m sure it’s compatible with most chargers. If not, finding a new charger would be simple enough.

Bottomline: I was so wrong. Good thing she found her old battery charger.

Why can’t all batteries have the same chargers? I mean, they all need the same thing: electricity. Why did they have to make everything so complicated, when they could have just designed all batteries to fit one universal charger?

Why can’t everyone recharge the same?

Continue reading

Spiritual Reflections

Not All That Are Broken Have Lost Their Meaning

As I child, I’ve always thought that our family would stay together forever. That we’d have each other every Christmas and New Year. That we’ll always have our house. That we’ll always have our memories.

As a teen, I’ve always thought that my intellect and skills would be more than enough to make me successful in life. That I can pursue any dream, chase after any career. That I can accomplish all that I have set my heart and mind on.

As an adult, I’ve always thought I’d be able to find that person whom I know will stay with me until I grow old. That I would have all the experience and wisdom I need to overcome any problems. That I would have the confidence to overcome my fears, and someday die without regrets.

As I am now, I am broken. Broken from my childhood expectations. Broken from my teenage aspirations. Broken from my adult ruminations.

But not all that are broken have lost their meaning. Continue reading