28 01 2015

It is only here
at the end of the world

where we will drink
to renew the bond made

in confined black rooms;
now at edges of large water bodies,

we mock the universe
and its possibilities but

soon we sail off
to our own corners;

tonight will keep
the same blood in our veins.



How to greet death

28 01 2015

Give Death your hand
Let him lift you to your feet
Wrap his arm around your waist
And take your breath away.

Chain yourself with tubes
attached to machines
that have more life than you
and the plug permanently fixed to the socket;
Death will still have the stronger grip.



28 01 2015

In loving memory of Albert Edmund Phillips
For my cousins. 

May be it’s because
we told him
that he is the only one
that will carry
the family name.

That’s why he
walks big
talks big
acts big
for the runt of the family.

May be it’s because
the other son
takes his father’s name,
the last one
on that side too.

That’s why he
his marriage proposal.

May be it’s because
the other nine were successful
taking feminism in one hand
and tossing it aside,
knowing we were born equal.

That’s why we
our last name.

May be it’s because
there is no way
we will let this
2 syllable,
8 letter honour

That’s why we
with all our souls

every time there is eleven at the table.

Story Slam

18 01 2015

Dear World,

So I went down for the first time to Story Slam at Artistry last night and I heard good things about it and I wanted to check it out. Really didn’t know what to expect from it.

After hearing people share their stories, it was almost magical. The theme was ‘bending the rules’ and some of the stories were about ‘yeah! screw the rules’ and inspiring in all the right ways. And the whole room and I went ‘YEAH! REBELLION! REVOLUTION!’ and all that. Like Jessica who ran to Thailand to teach English and did not tell her mother until three weeks after. Or another woman who found love on crag’s list and is now married to that man. And there were some stories that had quiet resolutions. Sad resolutions. Ones where you have to face with the consequences, with no happy endings. Like a friend of mine shared the saddest love story and when I heard it, I saw it play on the stage in my head; and I knew it was a story worth listening to because it was true.

Listening to every one of those stories, it was some sort of fairy tale. Each in its own one. It was as if I was sitting in a store where adults are telling urban and adult fairy tales, where happy endings happen in the most unconventional of ways, and new experiences are uplifting and the sad stories had their own magic that transcended on them. I know I’m using the word ‘magic’ a lot but I really am still in awe of the effect. And as much as I want to share the stories, retelling them might make me lose their appeal.

I think sometimes the best way to experience something, is to experience it. Go down to Artistry next month on Valentine’s day for more great stories.

Til then,

Where is the boyfriend?

17 01 2015

Judgement Day Can Wait ( Poetry Nights @ Cus)

1000 glowsticks ( in 5 parts)

17 11 2014

I’ve always thought the stars were the only ones
that were allowed the paint the darkest of skies,

that is until we became so jealous, we created
a light source that with a single crack,

allowed us to carry light to the darkest of places
without having to always look up for directions.

With a thousand sticks, we could leave our mark
in the ink the universe uses.

We could build sculptures of light
in the middle of our towns, stack them high,

spread them out, show off their versatility,
illuminating festivals and large gatherings.

The stars have never known camaraderie before.

And when we wear fluorescent bands
on our wrists and around our necks,

we look up, and we see
the stars running across the sky.

We pause, remove our bands of light
and fling! Shoot out trails of luminescence

that will fly right by the heads
of unsuspecting passer-bys,

almost touching but not close enough,
just the right distance to feel

the small ‘wosh’ of magic
that flying stars leave behind.

We try to make the stars jealous,
showing off our colours;

there are too many of them
for the starts to replicate.

We hang our colours from the treetops,
lightly illuminating the space

where the mat is laid, food is ate,
laughter is exchanged and

all the warmth you need
is found within each other.

Let’s make an aisle and a bride,
with her white dress

and combat boots could stomp down,
tear them open, have the colours

splash all over her white gown
in some radiant, glowing master piece.

The stars have never seen love before.

We think we are better. Point up. laugh at them.
They look down on us. Shaking their heads, knowing

that we think we might have the upper hand, now
being able to hold the stars’ abilities in our hands

but the stars are wise,
and that’s why we look up to them.

They know our light will last a night,
and their’s will last a life time.

Adult Poems

2 10 2014

Written for the very first Under 21 Slam in Singapore,Dec 2013, organised by Word Forward.
Finally! And Under 21 poetry slam, I was waiting for this
Kinda sucks that the year I turned 20 was the year this

U21 poetry slam started. Thank you Word Forward. This poem
is dedicated to the youth in this room, to the young poets

to hide behind bedroom doors and practice reciting in front of mirrors
who come to blu jaz on the last thursday of every month just to hear

the poems of the slammers that attend, they’re usually regulars
for those who go to open mics only to listen to badly written songs, who fear

their language would not reach out to those whose minds are numb
and dulled with the melodies of this century. this is for the some

that turn online to hear poets speak in New York, in London
to those who watch so many men and women

read poetry about their lives. Their adult lives. I’ve listened and read
too many adult poems about heartbreak and saddness and regret, read

too many poems about wishing to be young, to restart and try again,
I’ve read too many poems about the lessons life will teach you, sometimes again and again

I’ve read too many poems about the possible future. I don’t know
any poems written about the now. Adult poems are all I know.

I read them and sometimes I try and write them, trying to capture
my own heartache, my own lessons, my own regrets. But im only 20, rather

than dwelling on what has yet to happen, you and I should dwell on
what is now. Adult poems always show how adults draw

permanently in their memories, their childhood dreams.they always seem
to go back to that. Last month, I hear this poem by a girl who I think was 16

She spoke of a tree house where her greatest memories were kept and formed
her words made my ears beg for more and my heart swelled up, warmed

by their comfort. You could see everyone around her soften their gaze.
The adults looked at her, they forget that the simplest and youthful of stories always amaze.

Adult poems are not written for us, but our poems are written for everyone
everyone will and can relate to youth because they used to be us, everyone

will want the words only we seem to be able to produce.
Finally there is a platform for us to use

even in my time left I will use it as much as I can
It’s about time we raise a soda cans and took a stand

for our age and for our art.