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In Passing

To write this part I don’t just sit back

I sleep.

I throw my pen and paper
like I would fling about the covers and sheets
let the dreaming begin

it is where I will search for their traces or her scent

Where I would go back to prior days
in South Kensington
or alone in Southwark
or along Southbank
I would buy those nifty contraptions that twist around like mobiles 
for babies’ cribs and finally curl under the bed when it starts to snow.

Unlike in Hong Kong when it rains. Sham Shui Po, of all places. People grip their umbrellas instead of mobile phones, a rare sight. Now they lift their faces to look at wet they’re going; you can finally see them make faces and understand wet they do. Without this weather smartphoning passers-by can be so very dry.

Unlike in Singapore when it drains, both the weather and the work. As if jets of steam launch my mechanical desk to its full, unlimited capacity, never mind if the team stays at the outskirts of Heng Mui Keng Terrace a millisecond more after midnight.

Unlike in Manchester when it hails (in 2016 I wrote ‘London’ instead), everything halts. Even the unbearable cold that cuts through thick layers of wool, cotton, concrete, glass, and gladness.

Next stop.

When Florence sings, no matter if my mind hovers 33,000 feet above flat earth, her voice will haul my lungs back to Lambeth, 3:53 pm.

Nothing is never too late.

I am well awake.

···· · ·−·· ·−·· −−− ··· −−− ···

Beside me you sat and mindfully flirted with your iPhone:

I unsaw a photo of you, a dancer in all your naked glory, in black and white, the undulation of muscle, the pulsation of applause. Instead of fumbling or fluttering, my mind faced elsewhere. How you looked at me earlier knowing we did know each other only to brush the thought aside.

A mistake?
Can’t a person change this much?

a familiar face
perhaps a fan you have never even met
seen one of your performances, early or recent
try harder, from Abelardo Hall to Cape Bojeador
Shall I remind you of your cruelty?

Never you mind.
Your fingers beware better
almost meeting and mirroring mine, twirling as they write.
then you handed back my pen.

Never you mind. Your eyes realise otherwise
almost weeping and barely lying, three blinks, just like that
their candid spark was gone.