Gin

Singapore

Published Work

Cotton candy

I feel like I swallowed a cloud.
it's dense and heavy
just like Cotton Candy 
it spreads, wide and vast, 
its sweetness too light 
so light it tastes salty,
melting into nothingness,

clumping, 
and choking, 

Taking a deep breath in feels like 
swallowing another cloud that 
never stops forcing its way up
my 
  my th-throat 

I choke it back 
suddenly 

it's no longer dense 

there's no saltiness and it's almost like
I was at a fair.
Having cotton candy. 
my Smile spreads wide and across my face, 
eye shining, 
not like the twinkle of the sun, 
but like the puddle that reflects in the night.

Cotton candy

I feel like I swallowed a cloud.
it's dense and heavy
just like Cotton Candy 
it spreads, wide and vast, 
it's sweetness too light 
so light it tastes salty,
melting into nothingness,

clumping, 
and choking, 

Taking a deep breath in feels like 
swallowing another cloud that 
never stops forcing its way up
my 
  my th-throat 

I choke it back 
suddenly 

it's no longer dense 

there's no saltiness and it's almost like
I was at a fair.
Having cotton candy. 
my Smile spreads wide and across my face, 
eye shining, 
not like the twinkle of the sun, 
but like the puddle that reflects in the night.

We were best friends?

What's sad is that 
what it used to be, 
isn't what it used to be
anymore. 
And you miss it too much.
And you're not sure 
why you share the same space 
but 
no longer share your thoughts. 

Not sure why you stand a feet 
apart, 
separated by silence, 
the obvious lack of words exchanged between.
When you never used to have 
enough time together. 
Unspoken secrets and knowing smiles
now exchanged with someone else. 

Not sure if you 
ever 
shared the same thoughts about me
As I did about you 
when we shared the same space. 

What's sad is that 
you probably don't see 
why it's so sad. Because 
so much space 
apart 
makes the lack less like a 
drought. 

And I can't seem to see 
why it can't be
what it used to be. 
 

We were best friends?

What's sad is that 
what it used to be, 
isn't what it used to be
anymore. 
And you miss it too much.
And you're not sure 
why you share the same space 
but 
no longer share your thoughts. 

Not sure why you stand a feet 
apart, 
separated by silence, 
the obvious lack of words exchanged between.
When you never used to have 
enough time together. 
Unspoken secrets and knowing smiles
no exchanged with someone else. 

Not sure if you 
ever 
shared the same thoughts about me
As I did about you 
when we shared the same space. 

What's sad is that 
you probably don't see 
why it's so sad. Because 
so much space 
apart 
makes the lack less like a 
drought. 

And I can't seem to see 
why it can't be
what it used to be. 
 

One-Liner

Hidden

Unfathomable is the true emotions of those who blind you with their phantom smiles. 

Not me

I blame the moon 
for not aligning the stars 
I blame the sky 
for the Sun's burning rays 

The rays reflect off 
shining as bright as day 
Blinding me.
I curse it for my obscured vision 

The air around me 
suffocates - no: 
it kisses me lightly 
misty and dense 
I hate it! I blame it on 
everything 

Everything else. 
Because I wouldn't be irrational. 
Not me. 
Narrowed vision. 
That's not me. 
The heaviness in the air.
It's not me. 
The mist
They're not my tears. 

And I blame it all on the moon. 
Not me. 

Yours truly

You smile a souless one 
and wink a meaningless one 

Your lack of care 
without a thought 

causes me to understand 
the famine You bring 
to one powerless in 
Yours truly 

when the sky falls 
and the ground splits 

your crocodile tears 
and raspy prayers 

will no longer fool
My lonesome heart 



 

Mirror mirror

Mirror mirror on the wall, 
why does his smile look different 
from the one he had before? 

Don't smile only to her, 
smile to me too
Let it reach your eyes
let your teeth show 
how bright you really are 
from inside and out 

Why 
do you show the sky 
a different smile 
from the one you show 
the ground?

The ground yearns for your 
affection,
in a different way from 
the sky that still rains
and drenches you 

Please show me the same smile 
you show to her too, 
for the sky will cry over you 
but the ground will be here too 

Meteorite

If beyond infinity was where I longed to be, 
would standing on the richest soil help me reach beyond my fingertips? 
Should I hop the clouds and aim for the sun, 
hoping it would glisten a silver lining for me to grasp? 
 
Will the silver line cut my fingers as I grapple with the winds? 
Or would landing on the moon stage my dream to help ease my longing? 

Perhaps my days of hurricane might bring me over the rainbow.
But at the end of it there might be no pot of gold, 
for a vacuum could better suck me into the milky way,

to guide me beyond infinity, 
where the horizons lay, 
at the reach of the great vastness, 
far from the soil. 

The dust that falls

As the dust falls down today 
I stare at the stars 
For as I pray 
I shed a tear 

Even as the sun sets 
beyond the dust-filled horizon 
I smile a little 
For I hold true 
that I'd stay 

As the moon floats skyward 
and I close my eyes 
I feel your love 
For as I say goodbye 
I know that the dust that fell
touched the ground that day 

Your smiling hipocrisy

You claim a smile doesn't show happiness
and that your pain was merely hidden.
You told me so,  
A smile could be faked. 

But did you know my smiles
lacked my feelings?
Everyday that I smile;
every stress-free day
I appear to have, 
may not truly seem so.

I brought this up once.
Only to receive 
how could you be stress,
I do not see.  

Your hypocrisy
brings me to bite my tongue,
as the sting of your words 
add salt to my lips,
cracked from smiling. 

I flip my diary open;
to begin a new page 
that starts all the same
as the past ten entries,

I am stressed. 

I grasp at air

I grasp at air trying to comprehend 
why I cannot know, 
even though...

I claw for knowledge trying to understand 
why I didn't know
although...

I hang on tight, trying to find out
why I haven't 
let go...

Differentiate

Differentiate, differentiate, differentiate. 

Each time I look at the question,
it looks the same. 
The first time I looked at the question, it looked different. 

But what matter did it make, 
if my answer was half a unit away? 

Because at the end that half unit 
made all the difference in 
the dividing, the multiplying 

and the hashtag at the end, 
or the double stroke to mark my answer so, 
seems less needed than it was before 

For if my answers are wrong,
what difference does it make?

None at all because the differentiated answer
stayed the same, 
wrong. 
 

10 Second Essays

Don't fool yourselves

Don't fool yourself, for we are all unfortunately living in a world of farce. 

Did you not have paper?

Back home, all smiles,
both
A question raised.
 
What do you want for dinner?
Pasta?
A turn of a head,
a double take
 
“What happened to your brows?
Why are they so red?” Revelation came
“I got them done.”
“Done?” How do you get them done?
Silence…
What should she say?
 
“I plucked and drew them.”
The second silence…
His response,
Why did you draw on your face?
Did you not have paper?

Pen to paper

Pen to paper 
I pen down my thoughts, 

for the hours I spent trying to study,
match nothing to those 
who spent days studying 

for just a Second 
spare us the pain 
and the responsibility of a student 

my half hours break turned into an hour 
my brain turned into mush 

for my productive day 
turned out to be the opposite 
for those who put pen to paper 
for examinations related studies. 

because my four hours, five, 
six hours, 
could not compare, 
no matter how painful and 
determined I was, 
to their eight, nine, ten. 

For the greatest student puts in more, 
and the one that fails, 
merely puts her pencil to paper, 
preparing to erase it over again. 
 

After bath

After bath: 
His floppy hair sprays water across the floor
As he giggles,
tiny feet patting the wooden flooring

"Put on some clothes!" 
he glances at his mom, 
his laughter, so pure, so infectious 
reverberates around the room,
his tiny milk teeth shining brightly.

"I am wearing clothes!" 
he dashes across the room
smiling mischievously
 
"Don't be silly! Come here before you catch a cold!"
he eyes her, eyes sparkling with joy. 
he grabs the towel at both ends, 
arms stretched out behind him, 
he runs, 
screaming 

I'm wearing the emperor's new clothes! 

Personal Narrative Competition 2018

Loss

Loss
noun [ mass noun ] the fact or process of losing something or someone.
 
I am four.
 
Everyone is rushing about, speaking in hushed tones, trying to calm crying babies. Yellow is splashed everywhere, from the draping canvases to the robes of the monks. 
 
My great-grandfather lies in a coffin, his face peaceful, eyes closed.
 
My cousins and I each grab a hard-boiled egg, cracking it open to clear its contents. It is our second day below the flats and yet, I am still unaware of what exactly is happening. Oblivious to the pain and grief, too young to comprehend the concepts of loss.
 
The only other thing I remember happening that day was receiving more eggs to eat, my cousin getting scratched by a cat and the burning of a paper car for my great grandfather so he would have a nice car in his afterlife.
 
I watch the day fade into...

Dirty Girl

I am a Dirty Girl, 
sixteen and dancing, 
smiling and cheering, 
silently pleading for it to be pouring. 

My hair all tangled, 
my problems all knotted, 
but the faces around me smile wide; 
bright eyes offer empathy to my plight.

Hugs and kisses, 
gifts and presents, 
pouring over me, 
with love and care, 
I lie over there, 
staring at myself.

Because my stress-streaked skin
overshadows my cheery day;
feeling annoyance bubble up,
overwhelming,
upsetting.

For I am a dirty girl,
grime in my nails, 
forever and real, 
unable to escape the people I fail. 

Open doors

Love is an open door. 

i know not why, but as 12 year old me watched it,
i did believe in Love. 

But as the golden sun melted away from the sky 
day by day, 
i grew to turn away from the door, 
slowly learning that it was not 
to be Opened. 

for every single breath taken, 
and every second that 
passed, 
i thought about it--
occasionally. 

the door wasn't just closed 
it was locked 
and there was a gate 
but not even a peephole.

though my door was never ajar,
windows were thrown open, 
for friends to be made.
But the rain came too often.
i had to constantly shut it 

Love
stands miles behind 
a sturdy Gate, 
a locked door.

Not an open door. 
 

Given First Line

Bury me, spare my soul

The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there.
Today: She prays you spare her soul and bury her, for what you know of her then is not who she is today. Through the many years, she never once stopped to think about the steps she took and the words she spat. As she stands before you today, she bows her head in regret, sorry of for the things she did, eager to be forgiven. But the look in your eyes speaks a thousand words. Before her face burns to dust from shame, please, she whispers, bury me, spare my soul.


 

FACT

Fiction or Illusion

Otters hold hands when they sleep. 

He never holds my hand, 
not when we walk
not when we talk. 

He holds my gaze, 
he holds my heart, 
he holds my thoughts. 

Otters hold hands when they sleep to prevent drifting away from each other. 

He holds her hands 
when she's asleep, 
so as to not hurt her. 

She averts her gaze, 
her heart drifts, 
her thoughts waver. 

Fiction, she thinks, 
is what true love is. 
Illusion, he thinks, 
is what he holds when she's asleep. 

Fiction, he thinks, 
is that he is good enough for her. 
Illusion, she thinks, 
is that he thinks they look good together. 


Improbable Flavor

The taste of sorrow

The taste of sorrow is oh so sad, yet not quite. Because sadness is the little bit of regret and pain you feel because of something. Sorrow is mostly bland, it's numbing, almost not there. But it is, because the light aftertaste on your tongue is nothing more than a little tiny bit of bitterness. The dryness of the tongue makes the flavour of sadness almost disappear, but if you stopped to express your sorrow, it would be salty, because with sorrow comes sadness, which is very very salty. 

Food Writing Competition 2018

The pain of hunger

  The pain of hunger lies not in the agony we feel when our stomachs rumble. It does not lie in the agony of gastric, in not being able to find food to eat. It lies in the result of our lack of action taken. 

  As the sky, set ablaze by the golden yolk beats down on us, we stand in silence, staring ahead. The hurt you feel in watching someone else suffer is more than what you could imagine. 

  We were hungry. And yet, standing under the cotton candy clouds, as our stomachs growl, the juices churning, reminding us of our hunger, the hunger of the people in front of us hurts more. 

  Because the pain of hunger is not that of hunger, but of the want, the need, the desire to help them. To help the people before us, to help the tiny, malnourished girl along, to bring her to the food shelter. The trees around have...

25 Words

twenty-five minutes

One minute, two minutes, three... four... Daylight turned into darkness. Twenty-five minutes passed. It was too late. Too much happened in the mintues that passed. 

Monostich

See

From inside you see, blind to the beauty you are to me. 

Freedom

I am trapped. 
I am caged. 
It's physical not mental. You can't see 
it but it's real. I can feel it. 
I'm trapped here.
You don't see it, 
but time stops, it never passes. 
you can't run, you can't hide
you don't know it but I say 
It so you listen and you know.  
That was me before, 
Now I try, now I run 
Though it breaks my back, 
there's nothing I lack. 

From being trapped, 
I learnt:
that freedom 
can onlybe acquired 
after being trapped. 

“In January”

In (my) January: The days that will be different

I open my diary 
It is a new year 
It is January 
And I know that 
the days to come will be different

I look around me 
I feel sadness
I know you're not here 
And your absence 
make my days different 

This is my January 
I know it's not my fault 
But I feel that it's my fault 
And your lack of existence tears me apart 
my days are different 

In (my) January:
You are not here 
The days that will be different, 
is because of you 


 

“In January”

In (my) January: The days that will be different

I open my diary 
It is a new year 
It is January 
And I know that 
the days to come will be different

I look around me 
I feel sadness
I know you're not here 
And your absence 
make my days different 

This is my January 
I know it's not my fault 
But I feel that it's my fault 
And your lack of existence tears me apart 
my days are different 

In (my) January:
You are not here 
The days that will be different, 
is because of you 


 

Am I happy?

Have I lost passion? 
    Do I fool myself? 

What are priorities in life?
    How bad do I want it?
        Am I blind? Or just a fool 
            Lost? Or just denying reality
                In pain? Or just numb. 

Ignorance is bliss 
    but am I still in bliss?
        or is this not ignorance?

Am I Happy? 

Poetry and Spoken Word Competition 2017

A girl named Sue

Well, my papa left home when I was three,
No, he didn’t leave on purpose,
Yes, it was death

Before he did,
He named me Sue
Before he did,
He knew, his time was due
Before he did,
Mama was never filled with rue

I didn’t mind Sue,
But mama always said,
“You’re not a Sue,
You’re not meant to be
Sue”

But Sue I was;
And I was Sue
I didn't mind Sue,
I liked Sue

Before mama was gone,
I never quite got her.
The day she had both feet in the grave,
I understood her.

I wasn’t meant to be hers;
She didn’t want me…

The shame I felt,
Of being a welt,
Of being Sue.
Of realising,

Sue
With no father,
Never made her proud.

I was her shame,
Her pain,
Her disappointment.

But I knew, no matter what she said,
I was Sue,
Sue I was,
I am,
And will always be.



 

What do I desire?

Whatever desires 
your heart yearns
it'll fly its swords,
make its path, 
so take a dive 

Whatever's desired, 
your yearning grows 
spread your wings,
your imagination,
take a dive

My heart pounds
What do I desire? 
Whatever. 
Let's take a dive

Synchronized Sounds

For the fallen petals turned black

for the fallen apart, 
for the facade of fallen faces 
for the fallen petals turned black

Poetry and Spoken Word Competition 2017

A girl named Sue

Well, my papa left home when I was three,
No, he didn’t leave on purpose,
Yes, it was death

Before he did,
He named me Sue
Before he did,
He said his time was due
Before he did,
Mama was never filled with rue

I didn’t mind Sue,
But mama always said,
“You’re not a Sue,
You’re not meant to be,
Sue”

But Sue I was;
And I was Sue

Before mama was gone,
I never quite got her.
The day she had both feet in the grave,
I understood her.

But I knew, no matter what she said,
I was Sue,
Sue I was,
I am,
And will always be.