The Miracle of Delight

Essays and meditations about sparking pleasure

Jimi Hendrix Electric Ladyland
The Ghost of Jimi Hendrix in Electric Ladyland

Near the House of Pot, sandwiched between an electric power station and a direct path to the local airport, the neighborhood I live in is a mix of working-class Asian immigrants, mostly Cambodian and Vietnamese, and long-time African American denizens. The only prophet to ever come out of this northwestern hub, Jimi Hendrix, shuffled through these parts as a latchkey kid.

The Moon, Desire, and the Pursuit of Joy

With music—as with many crafts—once you experience that first tremendously powerful time when something really clicks, the intrinsic and dynamic reward system can become intoxicating.

Ink wash by Nikita Gurnani
Airless

you photographed me
exposed, image of your arm
outstretched clenching my neck
squeezing cluster of wind where life
temporarily nestled

A Letter to My Young Self

At eight years old, everything is alive, and everything deserves love and companionship, which, come to think of it, even at 37 years of age, still makes sense.

Star Rockets in Flight, Afternoon Delight

Is it possible to be delighted, almost mesmerized, by a red carton containing scoops and scoops of my favorite chocolate peanut butter dessert, Oregon’s very own Umpqua ice cream, and not feel as though the burden of guilt—maybe the most wasted emotion of all—has flipped into hyper gear?

The Most Unexpected of Gifts

When empathy is lost, what follows? What is the agenda? Perhaps, a steady march toward denigration and solidly placing the foot? The assumption of power surely is an unapologetic aphrodisiac.

Sexuality, Womanhood, and Power. Simone and Lorde.
Carnal Kissing

We sat on the edge of the bed, in darkness, unsure of ourselves or how to proceed. I looked at him, and he looked back. Moments later, my face was wet. It was over. I was confused. Had I been kissed?

Editor’s Note: The Miracle Of Delight

Journalists are telling story after story about the COVID crisis and the devastating government policies of the past four years. This media coverage is vital. And yet, we’re more than pain. The part of us that feels joy also needs representation. Space to grow. Here are essays and meditations about delight that are moving, vibrant, and necessary.