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  • Kimberly Nguyen

A Stranger Worth a Thousand Words

By Kimberly Nguyen
Posted on September 1, 2023
Cover Image Title: The Stranger
Cover Image by Jocelyn Vasquez Camey
Classification: Watercolor and Pen
Specifications: 9 x 12 inches
Year: 2023

As a writer,

My biggest inspiration is people

People who have their lights

In a sea of windows of darkness

I wonder about the tapestry of your life

When your lights are off

Are you still up?

Are you looking out at the world?

And what do you see?

If I look, would I see a new picture?

When you leave home,

I wonder how much of home I can see on your clothes

If that somehow indicates how you feel about

Your culture

Your secrets

There is a story in all of us

But the finest tales are rarely spoken

Valuable stories are told

In the soles of your hands

The material of your clothes

They unfold in necklaces you wear

We’re all storytellers

And so I start writing


This piece is about how it is for me as a writer to find my inspiration. My poems are often about others - their identities, nature, and so on - tiny strangers on the street that I observe from my high-up hotel window when I’m traveling, or familiar faces of everyday life. Being observant allows space for me to enjoy the story of others, a constant flow that doesn’t only start when you do. With my love for writing, I am able to incorporate their stories into other arts of life. This poem is inspired by my supervisor telling a story about storytelling.

[ * The End * ]

[Writing Editor: Shubhay Mishra]


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