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culture and identity

BY SAKURA YONEYAMA (staff writer)


Sometimes,

When I can’t fall asleep,

When my heart is restless, and my mind wanders,

When the sheets are too crisp and my bed suffocatingly warm,

I imagine an alternate dimension.


An alternate world where my parents never whisked me away to New York.

An alternate world where I never got to see Brazil.

An alternate world where my room in Spain never existed.


I would be a normal “JK,” a jyoshikousei, a Japanese high schooler.

I would probably be obsessed with J-pop boy bands

and trade romance manga with my friends.


I would probably wear a uniform to school,

and bike there when the weather was nice, a soft blue bicycle with a shrill ring.

I would probably eat at 7/11 when I got hungry and shop from GU on my way home.


But then, as I fall asleep, I remember that that alternate Sakura isn’t the real Sakura.

The real Sakura dreams in English and learns in English.

She is obsessed with artists like Gaudi and scoffs at boy bands.

She trades books with the library every Monday.


She wears low waisted pants and thrifted tees to school.

She rides a pale blue bus there and looks out the window every day.

She is quite different from alternate universe Sakura.

Sharing culturally diverse stories to educate, inspire, and empower others

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