Rain Trees at the Taiping Lake Gardens
I read this poem at Readings, organised by Sharon Bakar at Seksan's on the 26th of May. It was my first time reading poetry in Malaysia.
What I miss most
Are the rain trees,
The limestone hills in the North;
The sight of a big brown Brahmin bull,
With a bright white egret on its hump,
Under the attap thatched roof,
Of the rickety wood bus stop.
Tin mine white sand,
With weeds struggling to live,
In the barren silverness.
Rice paddy patchworks unfold,
Railroad tracks follow the coast, where
Tiny silhouette huts stand,
Husks of boats, fishing nets,
Abandoned to the wind.
The moist warmth still echoes on my skin.
When I am here,
I am as indivisible as the water,
Crashing as the waves,
Onto Ferringhi Beach.
I forget where two worlds,
Will pull me apart.
I can lie under the casuarinas,
And kiss you,
Like I will never, never leave,
I will stay, stay and whisper
(Like these waves),
Insistently into your nights,
Never letting you sleep.
We watch the fishing-boat lights,
Move far out at sea,
Singing their false songs,
To squid swimming towards the moon.
Published In Earnest Spring 198_ Harrisonburg, Virginia