Like all love, it happened
at an inconvenient time /
doubling over in the grass /
the whirr of a lawnmower
still running rounds down
the cul-de-sac / lying there
with his half-trimmed lawn /
I wonder what he must have
seen / His nostrils, filled with
the afterglow of shorn blades /
His breath coming in and out
like his daily routine for the
past half-century / I wonder
if there was anybody at home /
when his soul decided to pay
a visit / Somehow thinking of
death, I can’t help but think
of capitalism / I cannot remove
the worker from the cadaver /
Maybe he was happy, then /
retired after working twenty
long years / in the darkest,
sootiest coal mine / or he quit
his job at a local accounting firm
when all the numbers began to
blur / the blades of their edges
growing wild and free / or maybe
he has children / maybe he has
perpetuated the systemic problems
which pervade the earth / maybe
he had a good time / eating barbecue
in his backyard with his various
unmemorable relatives / that does not
matter / Death has come to lie
on the grass with him / staring
at the sky / trying to make out
shapes in the clouds / Thinking
of it that way a date could be
nice / after they found him
just lying there / content /
the fire department with all
their sons of sons / finished
his arduous task / I like to
think of it as being ferried
across the river styx / and
seeing on the other side /
everyone that you’ve touched
and left behind / it will be sad /
but the lawn will be so beautiful

Freewriting Explanation: Every day, Valen shall use 5 minutes to write completely unprompted and uninterrupted, letting the words lead the way. There is no end purpose to each piece, but rather, the pieces are allowed to develop naturally in their own way. The pieces are then uploaded without edits.

Filed under: Freewriting, Poetry


A member of Singapore-based writing collective /stop@BadEndRhymes ("/s@ber"), Valen dwells in the swamp of poetry. He has been published in various publications, including Anxious Poets Society, Eunoia Review and Quarterly Literary Review Singapore. He has performed his work at the Arts House, the Singapore Art Museum, and in various dingy bars.

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