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"this is it"

By Calista Ogburn

if these words were to fill the void

of the lost blood

and frightened children,

this poem are the souls of those who 

were too scared to speak up


“go back to where you came from” cuts our throats

leaves us in an alley

so dark,

where does the flashlight guide

if we no longer want to go home


the world consumed us 

and threw us up on the ground

with our bodies limp,

our souls soared into the sky

and begged for the hands of others 


yet, we were left there,

to die


"this is it" is the second collection of poetry from Calista Ogburn. This poetry book brings to light the rising anti-Asian racism as the spread of COVID-19 has increased. It captures Calista’s experience of loneliness, heightened anxiety, and feeling lost during a global pandemic. "this is it" takes the reader by the hand through the most difficult times and finds hope for the future.


Calista Ogburn is a Korean and Vietnamese American college student at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County studying Public Health with a minor in Asian Studies. She has studied at International high schools overseas which has given her a global perspective. She reaches her readers by sharing her feelings and experiences through poetry. Calista considers empathy and compassion as important values in creating her poetry and touching her audience. She relates her poems with women about identity and gender oppression, body image issues, and building the foundation of self-worth.


Originally created and posted on Instagram (@creativelyasian). Click to go to the original post!