Poem: Oh, you wretched soul

Oh, you wretched soul,

You scream and you shout and you mock me,

but you know not how,

a country is built, from sampans to skylines

You sit in front of your

sorry screen, typing tirades against

the ghosts of your ineptitude,

the regrets of your childhood,

when you chose machas and ah lians

over teachers and ten-years

You finger me, but the answer lies

in front of you, with your screen turned off,

and your pride pressed deep,

into your mud-stained Bata,

dirtied in drains then

masked with paint

But truly white, you’ll never be

and truly shrug, I never will

Behold my elite, caring face

Oh, you wretched soul

~

Oh, you wretched soul,

Shallow’ed be your bowl,

Hallowed be my bowl,

Yours iron, mine gold,

Hallowed be my bowl

~

Oh, you wretched soul,

You say you deserve more, Continue reading

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Letter from India: People

Note: This is an on-the-road blog post. To find out more about why I am on this trip, please read, Next book: From Kerala to Shaolin.

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A continuation of Letter from India: Kalarippayattu

The best part about being on a long research trip is that I get to meet so many fascinating people. Every day. All the time. It is actually both a blessing and a curse, because I spend hours agonising over which people to spend more time with, which ones I may develop into character profiles for the book, which ones must be interviewed right there and then, which ones can wait till a later trip/phone call, etc.

As I went through the first editing process for Floating on a Malayan Breeze in late 2010, I had to omit, with great sadness, many different characters about whom I had already written. There was “Penang Lyn”, who ran Sweet Manna Matchmaking, helping, among others, Singaporean Chinese guys looking for Penang Chinese girls, in demand because they are apparently less materialistic than KL and Singapore girls.

Continue reading