Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Christmas Wish

Last year
they told him if he takes the pills
like a good boy, Santa Claus
would visits him on Christmas Eve
and turns those nasty viruses
into snowflakes;

and he can finally build
his first snowman.

This Christmas
his body lies deep
beneath soil and broken ice, stiffed
like a frozen tuna.

When Spring comes, his flesh
will slowly fades away as if
he is made of snow;

his wish finally
comes true.

Copyright 2005 Alson Teo
Instant Poetry
(Written on 20 December 2005, Tuesday)


Do I hate Christmas? Of course not, although I am not a Christian but like most Singaporean I look forward to this day every year. It is the time when everyone is in the mood to shop, that is if you still hold a job. It is also the time when your children fight among themselves to decide who get to put the angel on top of the Christmas tree, that is you still have a roof over your head. Do I sound pessimistic?

Like all my poems I started it off with an image or a line. In this case it was an image of a frozen tuna. Why in the world a frozen tuna I have no idea. It just popped into my head. Unlike sashimi lover, frozen tuna reminds me of fish market in Japan. It reminds of death. It reminds me of mutilated bodies. It reminds me of children dying in hospitals even during Christmas Day, and it reminds me of cruelties in life. I know I have a great imagination.

But again, there is still something positive in this poem; Winter will soon be over and Spring is approaching; he is now part of Mother Nature; he longer needs to take the pills which he hated. Most importantly, his wish has finally come true although not exactly what he had in mind, but that’s life.


Gilbert Koh said...

Hmmm .... so what made you write this?

Alson Teo said...

A frozen tuna.

dsnake1 said...

Don't worry , alson.
writing poetry is like that.
depends on the mood and what comes before your eyes and nose and ears and mind.

i sort of quite like this instant poem, kind of dark and sad, but a new angle to an old theme.

Bluesky_Liz said...

To me the poem is neither pessimistic or optimistic - it's realist, which is a good thing. I don't like poems that purposely try to end on a bright note. That last bit made it ironic. I did think it was a bit dark afterall it is about death, a hope unfulfilled (as the boy never got well) and a wish that was granted in a rather unexpected way.

Alson Teo said...

Thanks dsnake1.

I used to decide what kind of ending I want and worked towards it. But later I discovered that the writing process will be more enjoyable if I let the poem (or is it me) finds its own way.

Alson Teo said...

Yes Liz,

That is exactly what I was trying to achieve in this poem – to be realistic. Let’s face it, life is not a bed of roses and it will never be. At least in poetry, although not exactly the way we want it, wishes do come true. :)