Her Name Was Tsunami
these are the crashing waters, they tell me,
where sea battled men in an unrelenting fight;
where the piercing blueness of the ocean
covered one’s eyes before death choked them;
where man’s castles and kingdoms all washed away
by the pure brutality of a thousand blue horses.
i see death, hardship, and loss paint the waters
that run up to my toes.
drenching each particle of sand are the tears
that have stained a thousand mothers’ cheeks,
the following days’ downpour that soaked the ground,
satiating the thirsts of a shattered earth,
and the very waters that have rushed down the throats
of loved ones, drowning out their souls and silencing
their calling voices
it is this place that a mother lost her other half.
yet again she looks at the ocean,
the glittering shard-like water resembling the jewels
that once adorned her ring finger.
stark-white hospital beds in a 4×4 arrangement.
the monotonous beep of the heart monitor.
my hand is grasped tightly, and two watery eyes meet mine.
“Tsunami.” she named me that day. Tsunami.
internalized are the children’s laughs that were part
of the ocean’s silent breeze that fateful day, and
the screams that quickly replaced it. stitched together
by pain, happiness, and all things in between, the fabric
of my life is near-transparent, its threads worn out
by years of hardship and tribulation.
yet my name tells me to stand as tall as a castle,
to impact like an army of a million.
I am Tsunami: scarred, broken, and fragmented.
yet my tides will never fail to rise.
By Sena Chang
Sena Chang is currently a student living in Tokyo, Japan, and her favorite authors include Haruki Murakami and George Orwell. Her most recent work can be found in the 2020 Anthology of Youth Writing on Human Rights & Social Justice.