Together In The Ether, Finally: Kimchi

Together in the Ether, Finally is a collaborative effort between MulaZine and Vans Malaysia, celebrating creators and creatives of varied backgrounds and identities.
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“There are strong feelings that reside within me and they wash over me in waves. There are a lot of bountiful blessings that I feel, being empathetic to those around me” shares Kimchi Lai. Yes, that’s her real, government name. A poet, writer, and creator, she regards her craft of words as a means to navigate into the realm of art, one which she does successfully.

At 22 years old, Kimchi has faced many of the same adversities that we’ve gone through. She even faced a few as she was on the way to being interviewed. While that is not our story to tell (you can head on over to her Twitter page to check out the full story), we were truly shocked by the outcome of the situation—the way in which she reacted to it. Standing proud, bold, and affirming of her decision to be shown respect, we see this reflected back unto her work. That is the life of our little poet. Bold, strong and brave, and above all, empathetic and kind.

When asked what superpower she would like to have, her response, as simple as it was, was affirming in a very human way—the intention of feeling. Drawing a thread from her explanation, she explains that she would like to feel the feelings that are felt while people around her are reading or emoting to the experiences around them… A big superpower to hold on to, but a suitable power to have for someone like Kimchi.

The sense of community that she draws in from her environs is not one that is typical. She explains, “As I’ve grown up and met more people in my life, a community does not necessarily equate to friendliness. It is being there in solidarity with the people who love. Showing up and being there for each other and finding a space to love in the way that love is shared and comprehended in the same tongue, felt through similar experiences”.

Quiet is not a word that can be used to describe Kimchi. Empathetic is one. Loving is another. Brave is the third. And for now, the last, being. She exists just simply by being herself. The articulate poet of our community invites you to her realm and understanding of the Ether. Space is similar to cracking a soda can for the first time and feeling a tingling sensation that awakens you from a state of moving torpor.

“Everyone goes through it but how I feel when I am most comfortable and expressive is an experience I would equate to being in the ether – effervescent, light, and ephemeral”