skin is stretched canvas

by Ethan Hsiao

my mother says that every person
is born with the eyes of a painter.
in the right company, i am watercolor
chrysanthemum kisses and quartz;
in others, i am lewd oils in crass strokes,
sowed with my blemishes to scale.

when acid rain becomes paint thinner,
i wonder what layer still remains. 
a beige circle in the style of modern art,
framed introspection for side-eyes.
or perhaps an amorphous mass of gouache:
opaque until intuition colors me full.


Ethan Hsiao is a student and writer from Las Vegas who is currently attending Harvard University. He has no prior publications. Previously, Ethan has received accolades for speeches, essays, and poetry.