Ruben’s Writing

My Favorite Place – Hana Bay

Hana Bay is my favorite place to be. Here I can see carbon fiber canoes as strong as the ancient Hawaiians they originate from, the tall rock walls as tough as the strongest man alive, and the long pier that stretches as far as one’s imagination can take them. I can hear concentrated cheering, excited screams from jubilant children and whispering waves embracing the shore. I can feel smooth rock walls and fluffy black sand while I stand as my feet meet the stinging cold water. I can see, I can hear, I can feel in my favorite place, Hana Bay.


 This shell that sits in front of me is one I do not know 


It is like a soft petal gliding with the water’s flow


It stares at me with pride like the eagle in the sky


Yet reminds me of my home – a place where I can hide


It’s like the throne of kings and queens placed high above the rest


Still its draped strategically and as beautifully as a dress


Above its round, sharp edges emerges a wave, tall and noble


This shell that sits in front of me is, now, more than just an oval

Passion in the Spotlight

Singing is passion. Your voice, your gut, and your mind combine to create this sound that emerges from your mouth. It starts within your diaphragm where the voice is created. Still hidden, she is molded and shaped to become something beautiful. Posture is changed and now, you stand tall and erect, stretching your lungs and throat for ease of flow. The lights flash on and now you stand alone in the spotlight as friends and family stand on the side of the stage ready to hold your hand through the process. A breath is taken to support your voice and turn it into magic. Looking out into the audience of people, you know that the time has come and she is ready to enter the world. With one starting grunt of energy, she races out of the diaphragm, into your throat as you scream and cry as she finally arrives, a beautiful noise. Continuously breathing and letting her go, you realize how beautiful she gets as she grows into chorus. Beauty is present in each step and progression of her becoming. As you look out into the audience, you see eyes that start tearing out of love for her presence and some confused of the passion she brings. You finish the song and your face is blushed. You have let go of your voice that you held in your body and the passion that continues to grow within you.

The Discoverer

I remember being young and carefree. From the sky to the water, and the mountains to the valleys, everything appeared fascinating to me and I always had the desire to learn something new each day. Each day was an exciting one, to me, because it was a new opportunity to find out something different.  While I was at my small town elementary school, I sprinted to my classroom each awaking morning and sat in class to wait for the unknown descriptions and definitions of things in life that I have always known to be so simple. The same happened while I entered my home-away-from-home church. My eyes and heart were filled with excitement as I entered that creaky old church, eager to hear what kinds of things an amazing God would have to say to me each day. Still I felt the same way when I entered my sanctuary; my generous room that gave me shelter and comfort. Consequently, I always faced challenges and adventures in my small room that was only little by size. Furthermore, the little Ruben was an excited adventurer, an excited detective, and an excited explorer who always searched for enlightening treasures and know-it-all details.

As I quickly took my first step into my kindergarten classroom, I remember taking hold of the rusty door handle that sort of started to fall apart in my hand. My mother continued to take over while I ran through the little crack of the door and onto the soft carpet that covered the hard floor of the classroom like a little puppy with no care in the world. I didn’t bother to wait for my mother as I quickly walked around the living classroom. Nevertheless, I started to observe my surroundings, looking for new toys, new adventures, and new beings when suddenly, the teacher calmly yells, “Everybody to your seats.” I ran quickly to my seat to figure out what this lady was all about. I was a cheetah hungry for the details of life’s operating system. I sat there with my record-everything-and-anything pencil in my right hand and my lined paper in my left. The teacher would pick up her strict meter stick and point it at the board to show us letters that would eventually make up words. Deep into the lecture, the smell of the school’s creamy and enticing spaghetti would reach its hands to the classrooms as it rang the school bell telling us that it wanted us. Each new day brought something new and exciting but school was not the only place that I loved to be around.

Oddly enough, I found my childhood church to be a place of comfort and excitement as well. My short and proud church stands boldly in my memory. I remember hearing the cries of cracking pews and the shoosh’ of feet scattering across the soft carpet. My Sunday school classroom was a small one and I remember watching my fun-filled father play his singing ukulele for our class. His jolly smile would stretch out to each of our hearts as the most beautiful voice would emerge from his lips. Everybody in the room could feel the livelihood of the dancing church as we sang our favorite songs. After singing and playing music the sweet scent of satisfaction would fill the room in the form of melt-in-your-mouth cookies and tangy orange juice like the wind blowing across your face leaving nothing else in its presence.Ooooh,” all of us would yell as our teacher, Aunty Tess, would enter the room. With a big plate for everyone, we would all be happy and content after our day at church. Nonetheless, I waited for that moment, each day, when I got to return to my home where excitement never lost its place.

Upon arrival home, I know exactly where I’m going; not only on Sundays, but everyday. After a big bang of my door and a gigantic leap into my bed covered with soft, white sheets, I have entered my own world – my room. I look towards my organized, resting shelf filled with amazing adventures held in books and journals to pick out one that I feel is worth reading. As I look across my book shelf, I think, “I’ll draw a picture today,” as I pull out an old note book filled with drawings and maps of crazy creations created by me. I quickly flip through the pages laughing at my drawings and thinking of new ones to draw next. The pages are smooth and my hands grow fond of the pages. A blank page sits in front of me now as I glide my hand across the surface of the page. I grab my magic-making marker and let it flow freely along the sheet of paper. In the end, I create a beautiful masterpiece; one that I am proud to say is mine.

My whole life has been an exciting creation of my own and I am proud to say that I have lived my life to its fullest until this day. Whether it was listening to the teacher in school, dancing in the classrooms at church, or discovering new talents in the comfort of my own home, life was filled with new wonders. In reality, the little Ruben did not disappear as he aged; in fact, I am proud to say that I continue to be the same excited adventurer, excited detective, and excited explorer searching for more enlightening treasures and know-it-all details.

How to Get Rejected from College

First, you must fill out the hefty applications either online or by hand. The online ones are easier to do and faster to complete.

When you submit your application, say a prayer and make your cross-your-fingers-so-that-I’ll-get-good-luck gesture behind your back so that nobody sees it. You don’t want anybody to know that you’re wishing to get in at that moment.

Next, you must wait for the admissions decision. Meanwhile, you can go to the beach, the mall, or post statuses online about how you’re waiting for a decision. Don’t stress out because you’ll look funny digging through piles of mail like a dog looking for a buried bone underground.

When the admissions letter comes in, weigh it with your right hand and decide if the letter is one of acceptance or rejection. If it falls gracefully out of your hands, it’s a rejection. Pick it up from the floor (if you dropped it) and open it slowly. Try not to rip the envelope because you’re going to use it again for a birthday card or something.

Then, read the first sentence of the letter and squint your eyes, just in case you don’t get what you want and so that you can hide from it if it does turn out that way. When you get to the part that says you have been rejected, neatly fold the letter back up and insert back into the envelope just like you would when you calmly place your clothes in your dresser.

Then thrust the threatening letter into the chest of your parents and hide in your room so that you can cry with no one around you. Try not to suffocate yourself when you wipe your face with the pillow.

Next, post a new status on facebook saying that this is the worst day of your life so that a million people comment on it. When you do get comments, post a reply insisting that you don’t want to talk about it online and wait for the billions of text messages. Reply to all of them saying that you didn’t get into a school and realize that you didn’t want to go there anyway. Complain that you wasted all your energy over this school and go eat a bucket of ice cream.

When the ice cream is gone repeat this process until you get a letter of acceptance.

The Best

The young, the underestimated

Looked down upon by older eyes

Unnoticed and misunderstood

Given no attention to feed off of


Left on rugged slopes of a cruel dream

Alone, forgotten, ignored

Kulia I Ka nu`u, Strive for the summit

Focus on the goal, the prize of pride


Forget the sorry lies and minimal expectations

Ignore the harsh demands of previous generations

Be young, be proud, be supreme

Greater than the challenging authority


Strive for the throne, stand on the summit

Build diligently on powerful lives

Superior to elderly influences and standards

Welcome the new, the improved

Childhood Memories; Youthful Joy


Childhood memories, youthful joy

gathered up in a glass jar

things we once loved and enjoyed

driven away taken far


gathered up in a glass jar

hidden behind matured lives

driven away, taken far

of all these things one is comprised


hidden behind matured lives

recalled are times when life was free

of all those things one is comprised

those times when you were free to be


recall of times when life was free

collect the stories, tales, laughter, fear

those times when you were free to be

the young voice listen and hear


collected stories, tales, laughter, fear

things we once loved and enjoyed

the young voices, listen and hear

childhood memories, youthful joy

To the Class of 2010

It seems as if just yesterday we took our first fear filled steps onto this brand new campus. Afraid, timid, and unsure of the challenges we would be facing, we each gathered up enough courage to fight through the roaring crowds of upperclassmen and accomplish the tasks placed before us. Eventually, we grew up to be seniors; the rulers of the school. Everything happened so quickly and I stand here today, at the graduation of the class of 2010, humbled by how fast time has flown by. In the same way, I wish you luck in your future endeavors. Let nothing stop you from “gathering ye rosebuds” as Robert Herrick says in his poem.

“Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,

Old time is still a-flying:

And this same flower that smiles to-day

To-morrow will be dying.”


The flower he speaks of is defined by each and every one of your dreams and aspirations. You define your dreams and fight to make it a reality today because in the future your biggest mistake might be not fighting for what you love. This afternoon, I challenge you, my classmates, to keep your flower smiling forever. Don’t allow your dreams to become nothing.



The Dog from Pasadena


There once was a dog from Pasadena

All the while he hoped to be a hyena

So he ran to the woods

Laughed as hard as he could

That crazy old dog from Pasadena


Kalaupapa Man


I once met a man from Kalaupapa

Every day he would sit on his kapa

But whenever he’d stand

It would turn into sand

That strange old man from Kalaupapa



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