The Present Never Ends

Song of a Manhattan Suicide Addict 

By Yayoi  Kusama
Swallow antidepressants and it will be all gone
Tear down the gate of hallucination. 

Amidst the agony of flowers, the present never ends

At the stairs of heaven my heart expires in their tenderness. 

Calling from the sky, doubtless, transparent in its shade of blue

Embraced with the shadow of illusion

Cumulonimbi arise. 

Sounds of tears

Shed upon eating the colour of cotton rose

I become a stone 

Not in time eternal

But in the present that transpires. 

(A video installation at the Yayoi Kusama exhibition, National Gallery, Singapore.)

Review: Sad Girls by Lang Leav

sadThis review was first published in The Star on 9th July, 2017

Sad Girls: A Novel

Author: Lang Leav

Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing, 362 pages

‘Your first love isn’t the first person you give your heart to – it’s the first one who breaks it.’

That line, on the cover flap of Lang Leav’s debut novel Sad Girls, is a quote from the book, but also a prose poem (from Leav’s collection Lullabies).Read More »


  • Do not have sex with your friends. No matter how lonely you feel.
  • Do not think someone is your friend just because they say they are.
  • Do not allow yourself to feel comforted if a man texts you often and is keen on meeting you. (Chances are you haven’t slept with him and are still a novelty.)
  • Do not be surprised if a man stops texting and wanting to meet after he’s slept with you.
  • Do not be impressed if a man continues to text you after he’s slept with you. Especially if he texts less than he used to before the sex.
  • Do not expect any man with whom you’re having casual sex to take you seriously when you say you are busy because of family and work commitments.
  • Do not choose to give someone you’ve known for ‘five minutes’ the benefit of doubt. There is a 99.99% chance that you will be disappointed.
  • Do not assume that you will know these things just because you’re over forty and a mother.


No One

You like your own company but every now and then you’d like to laugh at a joke that isn’t your own; listen to another person’s opinion (that is not an Fb post or a tweet); connect with someone you know, even if it’s through WhatsApp.

It has come to the point where you are willing to barter yourself for some conversation, some company: A kiss for a smile; a blow job for his views on Brexit; a fuck for the story of his childhood. But people are not kind. You should know this by now, but you still hope for the best, or are fooled, or fool yourself. In the end, please try to remember that no one cares how you feel.



Rose Garden

I’ve just come across the work of Rose Wong on the illustration blog Brown Paper Bag. Wong’s Consider Death show (last fall at Grumpy Bert in Brooklyn, New York) comprised pieces that feature lush greenery combined with stark, cold geometric shapes and lines. In some of these pictures there is a lone, faceless figure, a woman who seems to be in deep thought.

By Rose Wong (4)

In this article, Wong says that when she’s ‘sad or frustrated’ art makes her feel better, but that it isn’t easy to draw in those instances. I feel that way about writing, and instead of working on my stories, I usually end up staring at Pinterest boards, which is how I found Wong’s illustrations.

By Rose Wong (10)

Art has been a lifesaver for me. When I’ve felt the darkness pulling me in, when I’ve felt unable to tell myself apart from the black hole in my head and heart, the shapes and lines and colours and textures of art have given myself back to me again; have served as a climbing frame or stepping stones to safety.

I’m afraid my writing doesn’t serve that purpose. I need to be well to even contemplate entering my stories. But I feel I am very close to that place. I am getting there, word by word, line by line.

By Rose Wong (8)