Mansa Kuang, 16
Mansa Kuang is a rising junior at Lowell High School in San Francisco, California. She spends her free time writing fiction, employing the voices of different characters to focus on difficult themes, such as depression and mental health, an issue that Kuang says affects a lot of young people today. She believes that writing is a limitless medium which allows her to unleash all of her creativity.
Kuang is deeply interested in building equity in the world among women, men, and the LGBTQ communities. Kuang also champions the understanding of environmental science. By educating herself and others on how humans have affected the lives around us, she strives to understand and ultimately be part of sustaining different ecosystems and diverse species. Kuang challenges herself to be constantly learning about human geography in order to contextualize the world through patterns in human migration and the structuring of urban settlements.
She says environmental science and education, just like writing and storytelling, are ways of understanding different perspectives. Kuang plans to attend college to pursue a career in humanities, criminal law, and teaching.
silence fades in time
by Mansa Kuang
i am a captive in the twilight
are you flinching at the hundreds of deceased too?
i am trapped in a tomb
deteriorating below a remote cave
the chronic harsh wind
whiplashes and howls for the sins
life has abandoned me for the high above
do you notice the other bones and skulls too?
moist, ominous silence
descends into me
the soft trickle from an angry blizzard
falls contently on the forehead
the only company is time
gloomy like the funeral
peaceful like the final days
before the beauty in the madness
genuine, rugged, blinking sunlight
i’ve got emotions while other bodies got time
& i’ve got crushed ribs for the decaying rotten heart
i speak like I’m alive
like i'm somebody living that should hurt and feel pain
i exist alone in a doomed, decrepit place
somberly crawling to accept solitude
live in it
breathe in it
being forgotten in it
outside dirt from
my growing fingernails reminds me
life goes on
semblances from the outside world means nothing
not when you don’t recognize yourself anymore
not when the past is busy stuck unearthing
from the sharpened stalactites
not when you’re gone
is that the fragile future and memories?
i was lost but i have been taken out
through the hole i was too afraid to look at
unzip to reveal the flesh inside my bones
but don’t be scared of the sinister lies that taint
your eerily broken body
i dimly gaze at the skeleton digging me out
and i realize with a rising despair that it’s me
time heals everything
but what about an eternity?