By Ruoke Liu


I am from seeing the seasonal changes of the world
From spring snows and ice melting, seeds sprouting, swallows skimming
From the summer, with scorching sun, flowers everywhere looking a the sea, lush green pastures
From the fall, of yellow leaves floating, golden grain waving, limpid cool water streaming
From the winter, with innocent lily snowflakes, unique iced trees, white flowers on the windows
I am from an enticing, peaceful, vibrant world.

I am from morning birds twittering, dogs barking, and then, the world wakes up
Sparrows crooning, steeds in the stalls stamping and neighing, and the desolate wind’s whispering
From raising the country flag and singing the national anthem at the school’s sports ground
Playing hide and seek with classmates, cheating with friends and laughing out loud during the breaks
Reading books out loud and cadenced in the early morning class, reciting poems of the Tang dynasty like
(Not even a prairie fire can destroy the grass, it grows again when the spring breeze blows.)

I am from proverbs“不听老人言,吃亏在眼前”“失败是成功之母”and“一寸光阴一寸金,寸金难买寸光阴”
(1. Listen to your elders.  2. Failure is the mother of success.
3. An inch of time and an inch of gold, an inch of gold will not buy an inch of time.)
Sounds of bells when classes are over and start, and when the monitor shouts out “起立”(Stand up.)
From mom’s evening “晚安”,and morning murmurs at grandma’s house(Good night)
The accents of people in other parts of the country, the songs in national customs
I am from the sounds of firecrackers that keep lighting up the skies during the whole Spring Festival.

I am from feeling the soft colorful hand-made cashmere blanket covering my feet
From holding cold snow in my hands, and the feeling of it melting away
Walking on the hard asphalt, lying on the peach pit pillow, and the itching of the dog tail grass
I am from feeling the wind blowing my hair, the rain falling on my face, and the warm sunshine.

I am from night market, where the smell of mutton strings mix with cumin and chili power
The smell of hot jasmine tea, fried eggs, aloe yogurt, steamed buns, green onion pancakes, and bean paste
Hot and sour soup, strong-smelling preserved stinky tofu, the enticing aroma of sugar fried chestnuts
The smell of clothing washed by the hands of Grandma, the home when I walk in, the food mom made
I am from an unknown tree in the courtyard breathing out fragrance, even from vehicle exhaust.

I am from the seasonal fruits, luscious peach, sweet apricot with a possible sour tinge, juicy apple
Saccharine little orange, squashy watermelon, different kinds of grapes and dried fruits
I am from eating traditional Chinese rice-pudding at the Dragon Boat Festival
Eating glutinous sesame rice balls at the Lantern Festival, eating moon cakes at the Mid-Autumn festival
From the special way to make beef noodles, to saute spicy chicken, and many kinds of dumplings.

I am from those moments.


(Photo from Pixabay)

Equal Access/Equal Opportunity
The Board of Trustees of St. Petersburg College affirms its equal opportunity policy in accordance with the provisions of the Florida Educational Equity Act and all other relevant state and federal laws, rules and regulations. The college will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, age, national origin, marital status, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, or against any qualified individual with disabilities in its employment practices or in the admission and treatment of students. Recognizing that sexual harassment constitutes discrimination on the basis of sex and violates this Rule, the college will not tolerate such conduct. Should you experience such behavior, please contact Pamela Smith, the director of EA/EO/Title IX Coordinator at 727-341-3261; by mail at P.O. Box 13489, St. Petersburg, FL 33733-3489; or by email at


Back to Top