(#5/24): “Remembrance”

Three decades it has been.

Has it really?

How time flies.


Long walks on mossy ground.

Short breaths in the crisp air.

Careful treks down the hill on moonless nights.


Fitfully warming hands by dying embers.

Shivering under musky covers,

And scant heat from steel cold heaters.


The wonders of living in an old house,

With haphazard corridors, tiny attics, dank cellars,

But disappointingly, no ghosts.


The joys of drinking hot weak tea,

Gobbling up fries drowned in vinegar, guffawing at spotted dicks,

And going on pub crawls with mates.


These memories will have to sustain me,

Until I return someday,

To this land of a misspent youth.


© 2017 S Phua

(#4/24): “Submission”

“A body at rest, stays at rest …”.

I fall asleep waiting for you.

Against my fear, but I am just so, so tired.


“… Unless a force exerts itself, …”

You wake me up with one wrench of my hair,

And a backhand across my face.


“… While a body in motion, stays in motion …”

I scramble to get up without a word,

Trying to show no sign of impertinence, or pain.


“… Until a force exerts itself.”

I rush to get your cold plates to the microwave,

Until your ankle trip, and I meet gravity,

And all is still.


“If force is mass x acceleration, then the greater the mass of the object being accelerated, the greater the force required.”

I disagree with Newton here.

For the slightest motion of your wrist,

Makes me flinch, and jump, and react, immediately.


“For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.”

I try to push my bulk off the linoleum

With all the strength I can muster,

As you laugh at my agony.


“Gravity is the force that pulls objects together, and the further the distance between objects, the smaller that force.”

If fear compels me to stay with you,

Would not running away reduce that fear?

And yet, it is that fear

Which keeps me hostage.


I have not finished high school,

But I know these Laws of Motion and Gravity

All so well.


I am numb to the pain,

Impervious to the humiliation,

And resigned to the indignity of my life with you.


© 2017 S Phua


(Author’s note: Apologies for taking liberties with Newton’s Laws.)

(#3/24): “Creation”

Walk down this road,

Wherever it leads you.


Walk off this path,

However far you wish.


Forage to survive.

Build to create.


Forge your own destiny.

On this pitiless earth.


© 2017 S Phua

(#2/24): “Obsession”

Who were you that I saw,

A face among many,

In that passing crowd?


Who were you that I saw,

Still haunts my dreams,

To this very day?


Who were you that I saw,

Anchors me to the past,

Never letting go?


Who were you that I saw,

I blame for all that’s wrong,

To this very day?


Who were you that I saw,

That has me stuck

In this prison of my mind?


Who were you that I saw,

This phantom of my misfortune …

Or, did I?


I remember nothing,

And everything.


I regret nothing,

Yet everything.


© 2017 S Phua

(#1/24): “Revelation”

Today, I read

Of bodies long fallen

Into icy graves.

Undisturbed for decades,

Unseen until now.


Yet another by-effect

Of global warming

Lays bare the consequence

Of our ambition,

And folly.


The dire onslaught

Of climate change

Imperils our finite earth,

Opening it

To the inevitability of destruction.


And yet, it brings closure.

To families and descendants

Of the lost and perished.

Their cold fate finally known.

Markers to their resting place.


To the intrepid deceased,

And our dying world,

I can only say

May you, and we,

All rest in peace.


© 2017 S Phua

(#10/12): “Ode to B.H.O.”

His gallant heart.

His poetic soul.

His exquisite oratory.

And extraordinary intellect.


This fine gentleman.

This marvellous union of two cultures.

This great statesman.

This outstanding leader of the free world.


Pray that we shall see his like again.


© 2016 SP