the struggle next door
by john tiong chunghoo
storms and upturns her world.
the cruel blows and weak pleadings
of the wayward son and his mom
cut deep into her heart.
this little life episode she wishes
is just a dream, a bad dream that
she usually forgets after a few days.
but now the dying mother, her
friend next door, keeps appearing in her
imaginations pushing her to that section
of her life where she keeps between
herself and the almighty.
the sweet grape juice that tastes
so bitter this morning.
as she washes her own little
cute white thing in the bathtub
she prays that she would be able to
bring out the angel in the child;
an angel that would throw a dime to the
beggar in the street and fill up
the days of those in the autumn of their lives with joyful notes -
like the beautiful colourful leaves
of the season that fall in so many
ways to entertain us.