Our issues melt away and run, like dirty water into drainage pipes. Black fishes into estuaries. When we are out of each other’s sight, we’ll be out of our minds. Flushed away and forgotten. Invariably some scum stays: stains on a manhole. Is it disgusting? For me to wish thusly: I want to know everything. What are you doing right now? I wonder as I type these words, whether an old poem would remind you of me. Or maybe, an old Weezer track. A putrid display of cliche. Whether some strange, blackened memory comes rushing back out of the depths of the sewer we consigned ourselves to. Something no-one wants to see nor clean. Things – and people – we’d rather let rot somewhere else. So let me say it again, I wish to know everything. As if repeating it makes it any cleaner. I am scrubbing my mouth with this repetition. No matter how disgusting it may be – I want to know where each river ends, where every one runs dry. I want to feel this world: every festering wound, black-mold enclave, drip of a shedding. Every single shoddy half-written metaphor. I want to see you, behind your squeaky-clean 5-stars public-toilet facade. And I want somebody to tell me – that everything which was filthy was fine, everything which was wrong was right – that everything which was not, will be. Truth be told, I’d love it to be you, but I know. I already know the answer. My mind has no qualms with being in the gutter, as ever always.
- (Literal) A situation whereby police officers have either been prevented from doing their job properly under any circumstances. These may include anarchy or cowardice.
- (Idiomatic) A term used to describe poems written with extremely high effort and thought but disguised as low-effort so as to suit the Asian Values of humbleness, honesty, and horseshit.
- (Idiomatic) To avoid performing something at all or to a requisite standard, for instance, writing shitposts to fulfill all 30 days of SingPoWriMo. Alternatively, to go back on one’s commitments. See definition 1. Also an adjective. (“a copout poem”)
- (Idiomatic) Any excuse used to avoid performing said tasks or duty. See Chao Keng. Examples may include stress over finals, stress over the finality of life, et al. Also a verb (“to copout”)
- (Idiomatic) A person who cops out. (“what a copout”)
- (Colloquial) A common mispronunciation of kapoot.
Examples of common usage:
Acrostics. Academia. Balancing work, life and a healthy sleep schedule. Breaking up in your head with people you don’t even go out with. Confessing to your first love at the wrong place and time. Denial when you don’t mean it. Even if you do mean it, does that really work? English as second tongue. Editing. First strikes when you don’t have the time to think them through. Fuck as a vulgarity, not a noun. Falling into love at first sight – how cliché. Generosity just because people ask. Honesty when no-one does. I as a singular noun. I as a concept. Just joking, fake philosophy and pseudo-spiritualism. Jamming words together to sieve out poetry. Kafkaesque as a word. Keto. Listing out words and calling it poetry. Laying out scenes and calling it love. Lying about the writing process. Love as an independent variable. Misreading the Tao Te Ching as Dao De Jing. Making an audience hum while sober. Memory loss. Monkdom. Never making the first move. Or just being content with letting things slip. Or just being content with repeating yourself. Orientialism as a concept in the 21st century. Pretending to be woke when you’re still asleep. Puns that no-one appreciates. Puns disguised as poetry. Quokkas. Quips about things no-one cares about. Quantum theory. Running to lose weight. Rote memorisation. Rhymes that don’t rhyme. Lines that ruin your form. Short-term memory loss. Slaying your daddy unironically. Slaying as a concept at all. To be honest about things that you’ve never thought about. Thinking about things that you’ve never thought about. Thinking about people 24/7 that you’ve just met. Thinking. Underestimating when love can strike. Overestimating when it does. Forgetting to keep to form again. Uniqueness as a selling point. ‘Valen’-themed lines because really, how many times do those work? Writing poems to people who will not read them. X starting any word other than xenagogue. You spilling your personal life into groups of 5000 strangers, give or take. Zen Buddhism, but as an aesthetic. Zealotry, but only for self-destruction. Endings without satisfactory closure
spwm day 16
We are stamping each other to death in a furtive Cha-Cha. We will lock ourselves in birdcages but shout at those who sing. We eat our meals in a feedback loop and soon the man in the tasseled fez has taken our job. It’s ok because We Are Majulah; we are onwards we are progression we are inclusive except for those we don’t include. We will give up our seats reserved for the elderly but not the normal ones. We will be seated far from the fat man in the purple shirt, far from the man whose sweat smells like dust and cement. We will create a safe space. Those are precious; that too is Majulah. Elsewhere on the globe a paper writes about a Singaporean Family Feud and we chant, Sue her! Sue her! Sue her – that too is Majulah, that is only necessary, that is only love, that is only the Singaporean way. We are Majulah; we don’t turn back on what we do. There is only forward.
Write a poem in the first person plural, i.e. “we”, with a minimum word count of 70. Contain this poem to a single, unbroken stanza with no line breaks, using at least one of the following words: LOOP, PURPLE, GLOBE, TASSEL, STAMPING.
CHALLENGE: Use all five words.
KAMIKAZE CHALLENGE: “We Are Majulah”
Latest version available here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/singpowrimo/977440642371187/?notif_t=like¬if_id=1460589431047639
Second entry for prompt here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/singpowrimo/permalink/977471922368059/
You knew when it’d come around. It’d never knock on your door, like a mailman with a parcel. It wouldn’t call you beforehand. It was all predetermined. It would kick your door down, yet creep in afterwards. And the time would indisputably be at night. It suits the ambience after all: it suits the mood of the scene. Just you, in your house, and it, walking down the hallway, muffling its breath, hushing its footsteps, creeping, slowly. Yet you hear it still, like the heartbeat of a dying man. It comes. It strikes, only when you least expect it. You can shut the door. You can turn off the lights, lock yourself away in the closet. You can pretend it’s not there. That it doesn’t exist. Yet the end is invariably the same – by the time you start to feel its presence, its scaly hands pounce: and it clutches onto your guilty, guilty breast.
transmitted messages to orphaned pagers litter the landscape, sullying the soil with words which follow others , phrasing phrases such as “I’ll call you sometime”, “I’ll see you tomorrow”, et cetera et cetera ad infinitum. we lie facing up, like numbers on a tattered phonebook – seeking reception – but we operate face down; plugged out, zoned out, ruled out. our batteries seek chargers and the chargers seek us, yet out in the dark, the lukewarm glow of a mobile phone still illuminates a face. in its eyes lie the answers to everything you wanted to know, but never dared to ask in person, for fear of interference, of eyes peeking over your shoulder. the world continues to turn, and so we orbit in turn. There is nothing to stop this connection. I call you. Ring.
Another attempt to emulate Harvey…I have some time these two weeks. Might as well try writing more.
What lies ahead after these two weeks?