Monday, June 29, 2015

Longing

It's on days like these
When the mist hangs low
And a city sleeps
I think of you.

The cups of coffee,
The bouts of laughter,
Who would have thought,
We'd not meet thereafter?

It's on days like these
When I'm a bit low
I seek the warmth
I'd once known.

My wicked madness
Your good sense
A few handshakes
And it was all over!

It's on days like these
I wish we'd meet again
Just one more time
We became friends.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Chefs' Special

My friend, Raj, suggested the word, gastronomy, and since it's hard to give Masterchef a skip if you are in Australia, here's my tribute to the show:
A cookery show
A kitchen of rules
A bench of judges
Anxious participants.
Timers, mixers
Presses, churners,
Cookie-cutters
And melting butter!
Gastronomic surprises
Mind-boggling recipes
Herbs and spices
Thin lemon slices!
Bakes and cakes,
Roasts and toasts
Diverse cuisines
Pressure tests.
Plated creations
Soaring ambitions
Minds full of hope
An error, and you go!
The audience waits
It's food you can't taste
But return you must
For another culinary date!

Monday, June 22, 2015

The Man of the Forest

In the tiny old pet shop
On River Santubong
I find an old capuchin
Caged and lonely.

A New World monkey
In ancient territory!
Beaten and weathered
Like rocks in the river.

In the wild evergreens
Is the man of the forest
An ape with a cape
Red, with flecks of orange.

Dense, dark Sarawak's jungles
Canopies, ferns, primitive natives
Whistling birds and barking deer
Giant crocs, fishermen's tangles.

Then come the loggers
With saws and bulldozers
Clearing a virgin forest
For palm oil plantations.

The man of the forest
Screams for them to stop
But who is to listen
To an orang's voice?

Then falls the tree,
the orang-utan's home
The men come a-grabbing
It's freedom no more.

There, next to the capuchin
In the tiny pet shop
In a cage, sitting pale
Is an orang for sale!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Moment and memory

The word a friend suggested to me was belly-laugh. This is how I use it:

Moment and memory

“How long does it take for moment to become memory?”
The elderly gentleman takes his eyes off his watch.
“Why must you, miss, ask this question?”
He answers my question with another question!
I gaze into his grey-blue eyes:
Curious, compassionate, grey-blue eyes.
“It's a thought I can't let go off,”
I tell the gentleman with grey-blue eyes.
He laughs as if I've told him a joke;
A hard laugh, a belly-laugh!
His toothless mouth finds a voice:
“A moment's just a moment. We make it memory.
To live in the moment, you forget the past.
To remember the moment, you live it again.
If you mustn't remember, just let it pass.”
I watch as he winds his old wristwatch:
Time slips through those wrinkled fingers,
A moment passes, without its memory.




Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Picture


Walking down a sandy beach,
I  stop to find a lone dead tree:
Its withered roots coated with salt,
A hollowed trunk on a bed of dry leaves.

I turn towards the vast ocean:
The waves lashing onto rocks,
Their frothy crests like dreams,
The jagged cliffs like realities.

On the horizon's a solitary sailboat,
Like a picture from a calendar.
It's a shot I shouldn't miss,
But will camera do justice to its memory?

The soft breeze through my hair,
My nostrils take in the ocean air:
A heady mix of salt and fish,
A potent drug, I'm here for a fix!

This vision I commit to memory,
A perfect picture it shall be.
The tree, the ocean, the cliffs, the mist,
O, how I shall miss all of this!