My sister, leaning in to fix my grandmother’s makeup, as we waited to seal her in her coffin.Continue reading
I’ve come to realise that my resolutions every year are the same.Continue reading
For me, to know things is to love them–with a little dog by my side.Continue reading
Thinking is so hard. Sometimes stuff floats out of the detritus of the everyday. I can dream while awake, drifting like seaweed through aisles in a supermarket, and somehow I’ve put a thought together and then another and then another and it becomes a paper, an argument, something that hangs cogently. Sometimes it is like this where I am at my desk and I am writing here because I cannot and do not know how to write elsewhere. That I have a million words in my head and no way to give shape to thought. But the knowledge that eventually I will. That time is sure, embodies surety. And the knowledge that when I will, that when I write, I will not only give shape to thought but foreclose it. How thrilling to exist in this gap, to know that I know something beyond what I can articulate. What is the present tense of “wrought”? What is the space before something is “wrought”? Here is where I am now. I think about writing and it is like spelunking. Do you know what it feels like to wake up from a dream so vivid you have to write it down immediately? And yet how all you can muster are stutters, groups of words confused as sheep in a field, too plain for the fast-fading dream. Ocean liner 1611. A man who drowns another man, and I fall in love with him. Notes from a dream I had last night. Before I write I am in this space, the space before the dream fades and before I put it down. To write is to reverse-engineer a dream and to find it concrete and disappointing. To see a dance club in daylight. But also how the more you write, the more you remember, the more you know. That writing is inevitable. Again I am here because I am struggling elsewhere. But the struggle is delightful. It is as real and as delightful as a jazz apple cold from the fridge.
Three girls, legs thick, hair tangled, walking down the street in staggered formation. Two of them eating milky popsicles. A third nosing a bar of ice-cream out of a plastic cup. Shoes white. They are still babyish-short, waiting to unfold, like promise crammed into a flower bud. I look for the ice-cream cart. There it is, parked outside Deyi, crimson and inviting, uncle’s umbrella folded away like a swan wing. A group of boys buzzes around it. I’m suddenly fifteen again, or maybe eight, where bubble tea isn’t Koi but is nameless syrup from nameless HDB shops, a loyalty card tired-out in my velcro wallet, every stamp inching me closer to a heavenly free cup; where after-school snacks were fried chicken and chocolate milkshakes and ice-cream, yes, and hours before dinner-time.