How has everybody’s May been?
I chanced upon Singapore Unbound’s 7th Poetry Contest in April, of which the theme was to my delight, tropical fruits!
I love to write, although it is something I am unconfident about. I’ve never allowed most of my works to leave the perimeters of my notebook pages, or google documents. Always restrained by fears of judgment, fears of inadequacy, I’m glad I put them aside this time!
I wanted to share the three entries I shyly submitted, as well as one of the winning entries that really touched my heart.
Under the crown of bold emerald leaves,
Of the grandest stature of the beach.
A knot of wild inflorescence,
Pollinated by a young innocence.
But in the royal shadows of its siblings,
A last flower timidly lived.
Afraid of the coming marriages set by the Winds,
That arranged them with their fates of going out to Sea.
She watched her brave sisters go one by one,
When they’ve welled up enough for the waves to come.
To continue the legacy of the Palm,
Was that what was written in their palms?
Beneath the feverish watch of the Sun,
on an evening of a caramelized sky.
She bolted herself out of the tree’s eye,
Before she could ripen her destined life.
Nestled in a placid pillow of fine golden sand,
Deep into the milky mousse of the tides she took her descent.
Wonder will the floating midnight stars or the sunken ocean floor know -
The ached yearning for freedom behind this Coconut's show.
Beneath moons and monkeys,
They harnessed red spheres of sweet juice and calories.
Inspired by the sun, the star reimagined -
Except they aren't too far out in the galaxy.
Clustered quietly over the earth of Macritchie,
Adored endlessly by chirpy birds, squirrels and Macaques.
Who understand the short and messy antennas of the brightest green,
Burst stellar messages of a pellucid glee.
Peel tenderly its rouge fuzzy jacket of ember,
And lava of cloudy syrup oozes onto delighted Fingers.
A gleaming white flesh that flies one far into a heavenly space,
Above moons and monkeys.
Deep into the medieval era,
The morning star wept.
Another swing from the knight,
And another blood shed.
To the shooting stars, it wished,
That its next life would be free of sin.
Waking up to a life suspended on a tree,
Still an orb of spikes, except it was bronze green.
Sheltered by swaying leaves of the rainforest canopy,
But defenceless to the contours of a thorny beast!
Pining the trumpetting lives of flowers that captivated butterflies and bees,
Or even the feathers of the hornbills - so soft like its soul within.
As days dropped away like splintered brown leaves,
A bitter taste now slink into a restless fantasy.
With worry and wisdom commanded the tree.
“Now Stem, let’s set it free.”
Thudding carelessly into the ground,
Was a song to the passing elephant’s eardrums.
Over the broken fruit the giant came to loom,
With sparkling eyes that dazzled like the silver moon.
“Another ripened heart of gold, just like all your counterparts!”
And to the fruit’s buttery heart it gently hugged.
For the first time in all lives the Durian creamed with pride,
Indeed, all that mattered was what was inside.
My favourite winning entry.
By Rodrigo Dela Peña, Jr..
How can I remember being
unnamed? My language
was light and I had
no face. The air
fed me with secrets.
The sun was doggedly
insistent. I thirsted
for rain, its intermittent
attention. I was patient:
I endured birds,
Then ripening, my flesh
made me visible. Love
wormed itself into my body.
What is a fruit if not
a seed’s vessel? Here
I am, something
that aches to be eaten.
That rots and poisons.
Not sure why, but I find this piece communicates the feelings of a humdrum existence, and it does it so elegantly….!
If you love poetry and fruits, check out the other entries here.
Thank You for reading,