Letter to L.A.: What Is Love? by Mei Mei Sun

What Is Love?

Love is Los Angeles, a place others tell you to love. Love is watered-down orange juice. Love is a filthy green truck. The sad, red whirr of an uncharged electronic. Love is as thick as thieves. Food so rich with soul it gave you heart attacks. Love is something too good to overstay its welcome. An infestation of ladybugs. Love is never washing your hair in the winter. The unexpected and unwanted dinner guest. Love is a long-recalled metal pin. A little golden bear full of honey. Love is two geckos on your nightstand. A goodbye kiss before the Lyft home. Pecking pigeons on the edge of Skid Row. Cows slaughtered to be made into dollar-store steak. Love is a half watermelon, eaten over the kitchen sink. A midnight picture at the Griffith Observatory, your one-night-stand dressed in his only business suit. Love is a blood-drunk mosquito. An unexpected seizure at midnight. Love is the dark blue vest of a hotel manager. A night in Western Mongolia. Love is a grocery store fish tank. A dumb, media-made label. Love is a blue Swiss lake. Love is an angry voicemail. The toys of men who know better. Love is an eighth-grade midnight tryst. The glamour and grit of the L.A. Metro. Love is a continental breakfast. The child of a debt collector. Love is never meeting your heroes. A city where everything is a copy. Love is an alcoholic vegan. Love is the stilled Pacific, a body that touches both your old homeland and the new. Love is only a zip code away – click here.


Mei Mei Sun
A native of Yokohama, Japan, Mei Mei Sun was raised in Shenyang, China, and Birmingham, Alabama. She is a first-year student, attending college in Los Angeles, where she resides with her tiny white puppy, numerous indoor plants and acute childhood trauma. This is her first published piece. More of her work can be found at meimeisun.org.