Quarterly Literary Review Singapore
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Vol. 2 No. 4 Jul 2003

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From Deadly Pollen

You return to the stupa, yearly,
to seek your return. You wish to
come back as forest deer but
that deer is extinct. The stupa is a rock
upon which your dreams founder,
yearly - you return that which
you do not have. Meanwhile, in the
West, under ragged skies and beneath a
hundred spires no longer dreamt of -
attendance comes tumbling down;
each stone, unturned, in an emptied
space within a space caved under.


The stones collected. Ground
levelled and swept. The first cubicle
erected with four windowed-walls,
an open doorway. One man
on a step looking out to sea. Civilization
open for business. Soon, marble
was made smooth and square. The Idea
locked into permanence. Curiosity
stimulated commerce; others came and
conquered then went away.
That first step never forgotten became
a throne - historyıs seat.


"With digital, there is no past,"
says Jean-Luc Godard. Either way,
the button is redundant. Voice-command
is thought - the fear deep and futureless
as history, desire to appease which
remains featureless, not the disorganized
weather it truly is, as much a part of
the breathing stars as constancy of rock.
The 'Mr Whippy Man' weaves
Greensleeves in and out of suburbia; a
caravan in search of a trade-route
via the village that never existed.


How is it the floating island
detaches itself from horizon in dream -
its first appearance, otherworldly,
but of this world, a wheel loosened
from the worldıs ratchet, out of time,
riding above it and inhabited by
folk fixated upon a particular
theorem-thought; elevated imponderables,
whereby you access this island by door
set underneath as you sail under?
Islands, a dream of round towers!
the sudden rush of water under hulls.

By Stephen Oliver

QLRS Vol. 2 No. 4 Jul 2003


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  Other Poems in this Issue

The House After Her Death
By Amjad Nasser.

A Famosa (the gap)
By D.J. Huppatz.

Mosquito Wars
By Judith Huang.

By Vernyce Dannells.

the girl who could love you
By Alvin Pang.

Picture the Children
By Mani Rao.

Speaking For My Father
By Jeremy Lim Mun Loong.

By Grace Chua.

Total Recall
By Srinjay Chakravarti.


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