Photo by Jakub Kriz on Unsplash

In this version, I am sitting
quiet in the forest behind
my house, my path back
having long been covered
with snow. The trees are
quiet brushes in another
man’s bathroom, the lake
the frosted-over mirror.
My hands are heavy with
the weight of longing, and
so cold from the wintry
air. It was not the best
idea to have run out
in boxers, bedroom
slippers and a beanie,
but life is to be lived
spontaneously. Imagine
that, to be able to do
whatever you want until
one day you inevitably die,
that’s a thought so devoid
of poetics I could bend
over and spit my guts out,
a red persimmon split
over the bank. A man,
I forgot his race, or name,
crawled into a cave and
slowly slept to death.
“Green Boots”, they called
him, the climbers who
came thereafter only to
use the soles of his feet
as a marker for the path
they had to take. Some
days from now I will
see that I have not been
free, but rather, I have
been locked in freedom;
I have seen the rules.
It’s time for me to go
back inside, back into
a warmer place, a
house I don’t quite
want to know.

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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