As a creative challenge to myself, I've decided to participate in the annual Singapore Poetry Writing Month (SingPoWriMo): 30 poems in 30 days. This isn't a form I'm comfortable with and I haven't written poetry regularly in something like 15 years, but here goes. This poem was from Day One, with a prompt by Stephanie Chan.
MAP OF 17TH CENTURY SINGAPORE
(with apologies to Imran Tajudeen and William Jamieson)
1690, and the Johor strait is still a river.
Sincapura is a slab, stoppering sea with its
sandbank and barbed tail of coral. It will be
three centuries before the chisel of Changi’s
cheekbone begins to show. Ubin and Tekong
fade in and out on the tide. Nipa, southeast sentry,
marks safe passage through the rocks.
For now, the island squats and plots,
new skin itching at the elbow of the shore.
Dreaming itself larger, dredging for
its missing pieces in the sand: shell, bone, gut.