JTC (Jan 21,1960 / Sibu, Sarawak, Borneo East Malaysia)

Travel Singapore Haiku - The Singapore Gallery

Singapore Gallery
where we stand taller
than the island republic

Singapore Gallery
the noise of the city
also - scaled down


THE SINGAPORE I LOVE A POEM
-------------
the singapore i love is
when the city holds up
its clouds, playing pom
pom girls postponing
a drizzle so that the trees
in the lanes and streets
- with their intermmitent
swinging branches and
leaves - could hum songs
of cheers to those walking
hand in hand savouring
the warmth in each others' eyes

the Singapore I love is one
modern metropolis that holds
tightly onto to its past treasuring
it like a confidante she could draw
strength and inspiration whenever
she is lost in the sea of ideas, home
or abroad, techno or cultures,
fashion, culinary, pop or arts that
tiptoe, waltz, jive, foxtrot, tango, cha cha,
pirouette, twirl and swirl into Singaporeans' mind

the way they still call China Town
Ngu Chia Jui (Bullock Cart Water)
which invariably transports us back to those
years when life was tough like a buffalo's
even water was not easy to get
rationed, and distributed by Indian
workers who everyday came shouting
water water on bullock carts

Or the Samsui Cha Bo
(women with the red headgear)
solid and strong as granite amazons
who still bow and carry
the City of Lion on their backs
The city they too helped
build up brick by brick, sweat and tears

Or the Tekka, Tekka (below the bamboos)
they still use to call the entrance to Little India
the bamboos are no more an icon there
but how can you forget such pristine
gifts of heaven, such auspicious growth metaphors?
Singapore that has inched and risen fast as a
million bamboo shoots to wave in reflection of its humble roots?
Serangoon, Serangoon, Little India, Little India
Even Shah Rukh Khan and Asywara Rai love
to tekka tekka here now

And Kandang Kerbau Women's
and Children's Hospital (Cattle Coop)
well wind back Singapore 15,000 days
and you would hear cattle bleating
and Indians workers careering round your
young smiling pregnant wives or
newly blessed babies smiling in
the warm arms of their mothers

now dont ever slight the place,
or its namesake for this 'Cattle Coop'
has helped deliver half the city's lions
and lionesses who are all ready to take
on the world, cattle or wolves


This is the place where you can see the scaled down version of Singapore city. Real life models of the city can be seen here where the
guide at the gallery uses torch light to show the spot you are actually at in the city. It is nice to know that Singapore has several other airports apart from Chang, the rest for military purposes. The guide would also point out the large number of reservoirs in Singapore needed to help the island republic become self sufficient in water. It is also interesting to note that much of present day Singapore city centre especially those near the harbour are built on reclaimed land.

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Comments (2)

Why not a haibun, john? You got the makings!
John, your travel poems take us so many places I might not ever get the chance to go. THank you for that. Raynette