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Visions

I had a vision
once when I was 10
I wanted to stop poverty
I wanted to stop bullying
but the numbers taught me
that if there are people who can eat
there will be people who will be starving

I had a vision
once when I was 18
I wanted to spread joy
with the wonders of music
but the numbers taught me
that there are people who make the world sing
but only the gifted can make the world dance

I had a vision
once when I was 20
I wanted to make kids smile
and provide them an escape from “reality”
but the numbers taught me
that if I continued going on “being like this”
I would be a burden to society

I have a vision
I am now 23
I lost myself several times along the way
I want to pick up all the lost pieces
but the numbers are telling me
that it might all be too late
I might just be another statistic
I might just be a waste of ability
and money

But that’s not going to stop me from trying
to make my way out of it

What if you woke up one day
and found out that the numbers were lying?

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A Talk on Four Wheels

It was hazy outside again. I was feeling unwell all day. The moment I got off work, I walked along the road to the taxi stand. It wasn’t long until a blue one pulled up beside me. There it was, my ride home.

"Hello! Good evening uh, Miss. Where are you headed?"

I gave him my address.

"Thank you. So uh, what were you doing around here? Some shopping?"

"No, I just got out of work, actually." I said with a chuckle.

"Really! How old are you?"

"Eh, 23."

"And there I was thinking you were like 12 or something! You look really young, kiddo."

"Yeah, I get that a lot."

"So what’s your job like, selling gadgets and stuff?"

"Yeah, Apple products."

"Ah…. Like iPads?"

"Yeah, like iPads."

"Ah.. See, I’m like a grandpa now. I’ve got six grandchildren.."

"Wow!"

"Yeah, I do this for a little spare cash in my free time. Just enjoying life for what it is,"

We were stopping at a traffic light now. The old man takes a deep breath, and asks me, ”Listen, have you been following the news lately?”

"Which piece in particular?"

"Oh you know, the missing plane."

"Yes, of course."

"What’s your take on it?"

"Well.. My opinion……"

"Yes, I’d like to hear it!"

"Given that they haven’t found anything, I’d say chances are that it might be in pieces all over the ocean floor by now. Corpses though, I’m not sure."

"Yeah, there seems to be so many articles and news bites on it. It’s getting harder to tell which one is made-up."

"I agree. If the plane is still in one piece though, something must have picked up some signal by now."

"And what do you think of the victims’ phones still ringing?"

"It was reported that a guy’s phone rang, but I think it might be either that he didn’t bring his phone onto the plane, or that the call got redirected."

"I see.. That seems very logical."

"Do you think it was an accident, or do you think it’s a hijacking?"

"I don’t know, a lot of secrets slip past these days. I do know that it was proven with pictorial evidence that these pilots aren’t exactly the most careful.."

"Well kiddo, I happen to think that this is insurance fraud."

"Is that your theory?"

"It’s just a guess. Maybe the pilot was hiding something."

"We can never be sure now until we find something."

"Well, the chances are getting slimmer every passing day though."

"That is true, it’s been almost a good whole week now."

"Yeah, my guess is that maybe someone was desperate and terminal and wanted to leave some money behind for his family or something," the old man said.

"Well, but is it morally right to exchange over 200 people for just that though? Being a pilot is probably also decent pay unless someone’s threatening him. Still, that’s no reason to take down a whole plane for personal reasons."

"You can never be too sure in this world, kiddo. Desperate people do desperate things."

I sat silently for a while as the city lights flashed by.

"Do you travel much?"

"Not really. I rarely get out on a trip."

"If you could go anywhere on a vacation, where would you go?”

"Assuming if I had the budget for it?"

"Well, let’s just hear your top few picks."

"Mmmmm.. Well.. Thailand would be a convenient place."

"Yes, Thailand is a good pick. Have you been to Taiwan?"

"Not that either. My top picks though, will probably be Japan and America."

"How about Europe?"

"That, too."

"Well you’re still young so you have lots to see. Take your time. My last big was to Hokkaido with my family, it was so cold!"

"My parents just came back from there not long ago! It was -10 celcius."

"My! I went there in spring last year and I was freezing my butt off!"

"Yeah. Japan’s a great place to visit though."

"Yes! Yes it is, the toilets are so clean everywhere and the people are so polite and helpful!"

"Great service too."

"Yes! In Singapore you have dirty toilet floors, so much for being ‘clean and green’!"

"I think it’s just in their culture. They all grew up to be very meticulous and orderly. And neat. And clean."

"Yes, they eat a lot of raw food too. Hygiene is a big thing over there."

"One of the reasons why I love that place. It’s beautiful."

"You been there too?"

"Yes, I went on a trip there a couple of years ago. Hit up a lot of places in a week."

"Nice! I went to Melacca a couple weeks ago with my wife, daughter, and son-in-law."

"Ooh, that’s far up. Drove up there?"

"Yeah, we stayed a nice hotel and everything. You been there?"

"When I was 8. Aunt’s wedding. That place does have great hotels, I’ll agree."

"Sure they do, I love their breakfast! My wife got sick of it after a while, but I love it!" he piped. We were nearing my place by now.

"Is your place on the left or right side?"

"Turn left after the train station," I said.

"Roger that! And I’m going to get something to eat after I drop you off. Oh, do you listen to any music?"

"Sometimes."

"I was listening to this singing competition on my iPad the other day, this girl was really killing it! Changes my opinion on modern pop music."

I smiled silently. The pains were kicking in again.

"You can drop me off at the shelter there."

"Okay, thank you! That will be $16."

I forgot how painful late hour surcharge was.

"There you go. If you’re looking for food, I recommend the coffeeshop a few blocks down. Great mixed rice vegetable stall."

"Got it. Thanks kiddo, and God bless you!"

myhotcaffeine:

Today, my mother asked me if I hate her. I promptly looked at her in shock and was like “what?!” - it turns out that she had a friend who was mentally a little unstable because that lady’s husband had an affair, and pointed a knife at her own daughter saying that she wants her dead. Her daughter told her that she hated her.

That lady is mentally more stable and fine now, but has Arthritis. If you guys don’t know what that is, to explain it very briefly, it’s this constant pain you will get in your joints (most people get affected at the knee area) and sometimes it can get very bad. When it strikes, you won’t be able to move. It’s that painful. Painkillers can only help this much.

Her husband has left her, so she called her daughter up.

Her daughter never came. My mother had to go all the way to the hospital to get her, take a taxi, and then slowly help her to her place. The lady’s walking sticks were at her own place, and the daughter never came to fetch her or get her a walking stick. My mother had to tank her, step by step, till she got the lady home.

It’s a hell of a messed up story.

Here’s something I’ve never told most people. 99% of the people I know, don’t know this. Not even most of my closer friends.

My mother has Arthritis too. She’s been having it for over 10 years. These years I have been seeing her knees get from strong to weak, I have seen her go to many doctors and spending money on medication that never improved her condition. I have seen her go for injections, I have seen her take painkillers and getting so drugged up she has no energy to move around. She chose to stop taking painkillers because they made her lie in bed so much. She’s been trying to travel as much as she can, because she knows that one day she won’t be able to walk anymore. She travels with my dad a lot. Not so much with me, but my dad will take her places. He’s also someone I admire. A perfect husband, although he can get stubborn. He works his ass off to support us and he loves us all so much.

So today my mother asked me if I hate her, then she told me that story. Obviously I don’t hate her one bit. I never ever hated her no matter how much she scolded me or nagged at me or annoyed me sometimes, because I know she always has reasons. But I realised that I’ve never ever said “I love you” to her, that I have been this person who’s always cold on the outside. I have never made her feel appreciated enough. This story made me realise how much I actually meant to her, that if there’s anyone who won’t underappreciate my value, anyone who will definitely love me despite the fact that I’m gay and she’s not come to terms with it, despite the fact that I’m such a lazy bum, she’s probably the only one in the world who loves me so unconditionally. And as I’m typing this, I’m honestly crying my face off. Her unconditional love for me makes me feel less lonely on this planet. She doesn’t understand me, she doesn’t have to, but she loves me like noone else ever will.

I’m probably destined to never be understood, and to never be loved by anyone other than my family. I’m fine with that. But the fact that life has to go on and life cycle means I will have to watch her carry a walking stick one day, that I will have to push her around in a wheelchair one day, that she might not recognise who I am, and perhaps one day point a knife at me not recognising who I am anymore, and that I one day will have to part with her, that kills me. And my dad, the fact that he is working his ass off, the fact that he will have to retire one day because he overworks, it kills me too. I’m not very ready to deal with all that stuff. My parents married kinda late, so they’re getting older and I, as the older child between the two of us kids, am barely twenty. This gives me very little time to pick up the pieces and start supporting everyone else.

I look back on my life now, and wonder - have I been too selfish?

People always say do the job you love, but what if I don’t make it in the design or film or  industry? I’ll have nothing to fall back on. Suddenly I wonder, why didn’t I study harder back then, why didn’t I choose to enter sciences (especially Biology) or languages (or even stuff like History or Law), why didn’t I go to a JC, why did I choose this path? This unstable path, this rocky road, affecting everyone else around me? And instead, I chose the path I loved, I chose the path without considering all of that.

I’m not quite sure if I regret it, but it’s too late to turn back. A fraction of my life has already been used up and there’s no time to waste.

If I go on with this road, I can only continue working so hard to be the best. Only by being one of the best can I have a good income to support my parents. To pay them back the heavy amounts of money they have been using on me and my school fees, my life, my medical fees because I am a sickly kid, everything. And my brother too.

And I know in many years to come, my knees might just end up being like my mother’s. I have had occasional knee issues too.

I know I don’t have enough courage to express myself, so I can only write this out. I’m also reconsidering the thing about working in London in the future. I’m not so sure about those anymore. Will I make it far?

Ma, I love you, and I wish you can walk for as long as you can. I promise I will work harder than I’ve ever worked in my entire life and continue working harder than harder. I will try my best to support you guys and I promise myself I will bring you to see Europe and America. Be it on a wheelchair, or not.

It makes my other issues seem so tiny. The fact that I don’t have a lot of close friends, the fact that I have been hurt badly by many, the fact that my close friend isn’t talking to me anymore, all that. This hurts more badly than anything else in the world. It’s always been there, it’s always been growing, it’s always been neatly tucked away. Now it’s just suddenly turned into a monster stomping around in my head.

I need to deal with this.

Okay. I need to stop bawling and start working again. 

Reposting because personal reminders. I wrote this 3 years ago.

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I stayed a blank slate, or what could be described as blank conveniently.

It feels more like what one might typically feel if they tried diving headfirst into body of relatively cold water with their eyes closed. And as you exhale in the form of a sigh from the comfort of the heat lifting off and away from the surface of your bare skin, you open your eyes to find yourself suspended within cloudy, cold water with nothing else around you. There is only the darkness where the light won’t reach, and your source of vision only coming from the compound, the foggy white residue that light would just so kindly graze off from. The fog that has always been your scattered thoughts and ideas. The little particles you have to live with, clouding up your head all your life. They can move around in any way to form visuals and elements of anything you want to see, but only if you will hard enough for that. From objects to worlds and civilisations, or people or diagrams - anything at all. It constructs, it recalls, and it also predicts and calculates on its own. There is no hesitation visible as the particles dart around swiftly to their next absolute positions. Such things alone run on a high amount of energy, so in a relaxed and default mode, everything is shut and scattered, leaving the particles to wander around as lives of their own.

This is what it feels like to be asleep.

And at some point, you’d need to catch your breath again. As you take it in, the water gushes inwards to fill your lungs up painlessly in a form of acute freezing numbness. You feel your face thawing and your limbs releasing from paralysis as the touch on your skin sinks back into the recognisable temperature from the air enveloping your body. Consuming the bubble you have so casually casted on yourself, your brain is being put to a kick start again, much like an engine starting up again after a night of rest. Except, your rest wasn’t exactly that good. No, it’s usually determined almost immediately by how your eyes feel as you try to open them. The instant sore feeling tugging yanking at your lines of frustration like an old ventriloquist is enough to set a whole city on fire.

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Bridges are simple, yet complicated structures. One can stand on the sides, peering down at the dark waters. In the night, only the street lamps made those ripples visible. Nobody would be able to tell if you threw something down. The night was watching - gentle, but daunting.

The wind caressed my face. There was barely any reflection on those waters. Only the muddled, orange glow refracted off the lights above. Traffic buzzes past from behind me, people going towards wherever they needed to be.

I looked up at the sky. I always looked up whenever I needed to think. It’s part of a habit. Indoors or outdoors, this is a habit I have never managed to kick. Whenever I was thinking hard, I’d look up. Sky or ceiling, the boundaries calmed me.

The city lights had masked the stars, leaving a familiar purplish hue as the chalky clouds moved in. I must have been walking outside for a while. There were no voices left now.

I looked down at my shadows. There were more than one, for the street lamps were casting them in different directions. I liked shadows. They were all I played with, with a faint light glowing in my room casting onto the blank wall beside my bed.

There was a ringing sound - a bicycle. An old man was crossing the bridge, his ice-cream cart rattling along. They always went for a dollar. I recalled to the incident a few years ago where an ice-cream man was murdered while waiting for his son to finish school. The boy waited by his father’s cart for hours before getting the news.

I looked down at my hands again. Tinted in orange, scars still visible. Sighing again, I drew dots in my mind. I finished my bridge walk, the rushing sound of traffic still freshly embedded in my mind.

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"Cigarette Theory" - Daniel Bullock

We’re born. We live. We die. But often we thing to ourselves “why?” not so much as a meaning of life question but more like “what’s the point if all we do is eat, fuck, work and die?” there really is nothing else that we do. We question our existence here simple because it gives us something to think about while we are not doing the holy quartet of mortal endurance (eat, fuck, work and die). In response to this and after a few cups of coffee and enough nicotine to kill a horse I have come up with something I call the “early morning cigarette theory” when we are born we light the cigarette. That first drag is one of the best parts of the day, as is childhood but both are things that go by so fast they sometimes seem like a blur. As you continue with you cigarette you live your life, sometimes fast, sometimes slow, but in the long run the good seems to outweigh the bad. One of the more facetious things that life has. As you take your last drag on your cigarette you die. Again, another poetic irony. You sit there on your deathbed thinking about the regrets you have had in your life and things that made you happy. Sometimes it is the small things that we really have to take into account because those are the things that we will cherish the most when we get older. Perhaps it is meeting your soul mate, or just doing a drawing that you like. But when you really thing about life isn’t just that simple. There are things that are life-changing events. Self-realization. Those bad drags that don’t go down just right. The shit that makes us say, “Why do I even bother?” because we learn from them. We really do only have so much time on this earth and it is up to use what we take away from the bad things. Someone once said that life is like a beautiful melody, only the lyrics are fucked up. Nothing could be truer. We must rewrite the lyrics as needed to end on that last good drag. We should enjoy life and not worry so much about when the next bad drag is going to be. After all, there is plenty of time to be dead.

(Source: redbubble.com)

Let me write something about these two kids real quick;It was the 9th of August, 2013. If you guys don’t know about it, it was basically Singapore’s Independence Day.I was with a friend who asked me along to watch the parade because she had tickets for a screen-viewing (which we eventually didn’t attend but we did wait around for fireworks) and these two boys were standing along the bridge to Marina Square.I don’t know how many people donated coins for goodwill that day, but I was like "Hey, let me take a picture of you guys.""Okay, sure!" they piped."Alright. Here’s all my coins, you can have them.""And here’s an apple for you!""Oh no, I’m in a rush. Tell you what, can you guys give this apple to someone else who comes along? Go give it to anybody.""That’s what we’ve been doing because nobody’s taking them after donating!""Oh dear," I chuckled, "People really need to eat more fruits, don’t they?"They smiled. My friend was waiting beside me, so I said, "Alright, I have to go but I think I will write about you guys!""Okay! Hope you get some good photographs today!" they replied, smiling shyly. Poor kids must have been standing around all afternoon."Thank you! Take care guys!"And with that, my friend and I continued on way towards the riverside.I may have only donated a few coins and not eat an apple, but a photograph and a tiny conversation was what I hoped to have made these two kids smile and give them something to hold on to - even if it’s for a while, to carry on with a taxing day with fundraising activities.Keep on going, for humanity.
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Let me write something about these two kids real quick;

It was the 9th of August, 2013. If you guys don’t know about it, it was basically Singapore’s Independence Day.

I was with a friend who asked me along to watch the parade because she had tickets for a screen-viewing (which we eventually didn’t attend but we did wait around for fireworks) and these two boys were standing along the bridge to Marina Square.

I don’t know how many people donated coins for goodwill that day, but I was like "Hey, let me take a picture of you guys."

"Okay, sure!" they piped.

"Alright. Here’s all my coins, you can have them."

"And here’s an apple for you!"

"Oh no, I’m in a rush. Tell you what, can you guys give this apple to someone else who comes along? Go give it to anybody."

"That’s what we’ve been doing because nobody’s taking them after donating!"

"Oh dear," I chuckled, "People really need to eat more fruits, don’t they?"

They smiled. My friend was waiting beside me, so I said, "Alright, I have to go but I think I will write about you guys!"

"Okay! Hope you get some good photographs today!" they replied, smiling shyly. Poor kids must have been standing around all afternoon.

"Thank you! Take care guys!"

And with that, my friend and I continued on way towards the riverside.

I may have only donated a few coins and not eat an apple, but a photograph and a tiny conversation was what I hoped to have made these two kids smile and give them something to hold on to - even if it’s for a while, to carry on with a taxing day with fundraising activities.

Keep on going, for humanity.

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Winning

The sky rains with ashes
Decipitates to nothingness
Sparked by the hopes
and dreams
Driven by the machines
I stand still soaking it all in
and I know again
That a part of me
Is once again crying

Not for the broken
Not for the free
But for all hopes
And their lost dreams
The song plays and marches
Along my skin it dances
As tones pulled my muscles
My soul tears
Ruptured

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I am but a slate
Let me feel your hunger through you
Your pain through you
Your confusion
Your exhaustion
Let me take it away
And trade it
With something new
As you listen and you speak
On an axis like your feet
When you wake is when she sleeps
The angels cry and lovebirds weep

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Under the trapdoor
These oddities
and these complexities
Of the norm
but not of activities
But of priorities
and of ambiguities
Stared the moon down
in a cup
Of old
hardened
whisky
Like the men
of the boats of the living
They step ashore
And she is rusting
Green is growing over
on the chains and living
She goes everywhere
with them

Quietly resting
at the bottom of the sea
Yet nobody sees her
when she breathes
Dreaming
    Where do they sail next
For when they are sailing
        on the seas

       is when they are the closest
  to me