Both of me

by Philip Kuan


Our mother fought our decision tooth and nail, until she couldn’t any longer. But ultimately that resolve, so concentrated it seemed almost obscene, convinced us to keep ourselves subtle, just for the day. And so here we mourn beside her casket, melding memories, bittersweet taste lingering on our lips as the torment only feeds our longing. Judgement…must wait for her to disappear.

We remain impenetrable. Unshattered reflections flashing stigmas back upon those who would be blinded by tainted intentions, by those most disturbed when love remains so pure that it’s reluctant to venture. A seed that weathers temptations spewed forth by the women, men, even cousins, yet continuing to flourish amongst the withered and the blighted.

But really, how could any of them have expected to surpass this westward Adonis, cut from father’s miraculous mold? Impossible!

Even now, having watched our mother avert herself so carefully in these waning weeks, we remain refined, testaments to how well we were raised, to how well we were instilled, with just enough self-assurance to distill our own arrogance. Tomorrow will be that culmination, that announcement with an embedded opportunity, at long last, to have ourselves fully recited. And to those who’d avoid it we can only flip up our noses, fully aware that silent ridicule, brought by those with no like circumstance, can only be expected.


The heart wants what the heart wants, and I want my brother. This is what I tell him because this is all he’ll hear.

But I don’t mind. Mother always reminded me to protect him, albeit not in the way I pursued. And it’s not as if I wasn’t tempted by the girls, or boys, or cousins. Or that anonymous smut that slipped beneath my door, tied to the string of a parent’s hollow desperation.

Toward the end, I wish I could’ve explained it better. About how I’d discovered his fragility early on, netted by a bond so brittle that a whisper should tear him asunder, as what nearly occurred when I flirted with that classmate. His reaction was…immediate.

The promises I negotiated with him that night, perverse at the time, have aged surprisingly well. My loneliness and my regret, long since buried by sanctity built upon the innocence of that simple white lie, are held in stasis by instincts nearly paternal in nature.

Sensing another whimper, I put my arm around this weaker, eastward Adonis. And once again, I anoint upon him the surplus confidence still spilling from my teet.


©Copyright 2015, Philip Kuan

PHILIP KUAN - [Read Full Bio] is an aspiring writer from California, with a healthy interest in befuddling readers. Some of his favorite authors include Charles Dickens, Tolkien, and Franz Kafka, among others...

[Featured] Art Image Credit: Portrait (oil on canvas) by Sarah O’Brien. ©Copyright 2015, Sarah O’Brien

Snapping Twig – Spring – 2015

Vol: Feb 2015 thru Apr 2015