memory in orbit

    Trust Ricci (Filippina poet / dancer Nerisa Guevara) to come up with an intense, succinct and incontestably evocative definition of what it is writers do : we create memory.

    A key theme of her work of course, but also of that larger enterprise of transforming the unreal into the real.

    If I may quote: "Wow".

    Good reading at NLB Writers Circle yesterday, a relatively unschooled but keen crowd who warmed to the writers quickly.

    Suddenly conscious of the intense focus on family (what Krip calls the "literature of relations") that persists in both S'porean and Filippino writing in English ("Soul", Ana?) vs the relatively greater weight given to form, aesthetics and the personal lyric in UK/US writing. An Asian motif?

    Think about how relatively banal a divorce poem would be in the US vs here, or even UK.

    Once more I'm reminded of how disgusted I am with the tokenism which informs cultural representation here. Esp when there are so many deeper threads and trends simmering beneath the surface.

    In this context, one could say that even Cyril's work - at the same time as it subverts the traditional Asian familial stereotype (and its implicit power/gender/sexual relations) - also embraces it, and the poet's emotional universe cannot fully escape its larger orbit.

    At any rate the Marine Parade lib, with its Discover Centre-style children's section and enthusiastic writers circle is certainly a good option for a return visit.

    Must also remember to invite Ramon Sunico back to conduct a workshop in writing for children. With his son!

04 September 2001   10:16 hours
no sign before { } resistance