Lin Lin

Being Asian

This piece is about the daily struggles of being Asian American in this country, dealing with issues like the model minority myth and the COVID-19 pandemic.

(Excuse the aggressive language)

we are “the model minority,”
associated with mathematics as a top priority.

when Asians do the math,
an 89 grade average is a death sentence at last.

dogs are man’s best friend
while apparently it’s an asian man’s lunch to no end.

chopsticks in my hair instead of rubber bands.
eating pearly white rice all day is what people demand.

overachieving prodigies in the field of ivy leagues.
but of course, our accomplishments stem from our ethnicity!
since that is your foolish explanation for your intrigues.

playing violin and piano at the ripe age of six,
even Paganini and old Bach would be shitting bricks.

so many Asians,
so many talents lumped into a Harvard category,

we confined to a small box in an application allegory.

in many cases, I am the deviant and the exception.
but just like my brothers and sisters, I still fall into white perceptions.

I am what you call the “model minority”
striving to be at the top, at Yale, and in the majority.

though there are parts of the stereotype that I am proud to be,
I will tear apart all false notions of what should be me.

but now everything has changed when the coronavirus attacked.

with the virus all over the news,
the word chink engraved everyone’s views.


chink is burned into my skin,
it is as if it were my long lost twin.


no matter if your community has more than thirty ethnicities and differences,
in the eyes of a bigot, we are all of Chinese equivalence

parasite did not save us.


crazy rich asians didn’t save us.
with awards and praises,
in the end, we are still the yellow peril in the public’s gaze

there will be no interpretation of my racial identity,
being connected to my personality,
my sexuality,
and my mentality.
 

we are neither the yellow peril or the model minority.
if you do feel the need to assault us,
either verbally,
physically,

fuck you. :)