Collecting Butterflies

(c) Olga Darchuk


Someone once told me, “You laugh as though you have never known sadness. 

I remember being offended, questioning what source does my poetry spring from oftentimes, if not sadness? Though of an artistic nature, sadness was what I had come to understand as the emotion contrary to happiness. 

As I look back, I’d say he was right. I was too busy collecting my butterflies of happiness, living my life in all shades of yellow to even think about the deep, looming sadness of being. 

He, on the contrary, had had a tough childhood. A broken family, a brother with a severe case of OCD, a neglected boyhood. No one to understand him. No one to pause and look into the depth of his sadness.  Read more

Feeling useless sitting at home in the middle of a global pandemic?

A lone shack of a daily-wage worker.

Were Plato, the great Athenian philosopher of the Classical age living through this pandemic, he would have proposed to banish from this world all my fellow poets, writers and artists of other sorts, including myself, while propagating the message, “Art is useless.”

When the world needs healthcare workers, farmers, scientists and researchers most of all, there are moments I cannot help feeling rather useless. 

“Is sitting at home contribution enough?” I question myself. 

Doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers have jumped into the wildfire of Covid-19 to save the world from burning down. Despite the disruption in the agricultural industry, farmers and producers are working tirelessly to provide for us. Delivery workers have emerged as frontline soldiers, supplying food, toilet-paper and hand sanitisers. There are teachers, corporate employees, IT managers, financial analysts and accountants doing their jobs from home to help the system run despite the standstill. Journalists have braved great dangers to cover the pandemic up close so that we may sit more informed on our comfortable couch. Countless individuals have made donations to help fight the pandemic while countless others have taken on themselves the economic dip, all to prevent the virus from spreading.

Then I take a look at myself. A girl of 23, sitting at home, jobless, writing a poem or two, writing slowly her novel everyday, but not doing any good to the world. Read more

Forest Queen

Queen of forest
Google Images


I have made this forest my queendom

I reign over all elements of nature

around seasons from my peacock throne. 

Songbirds and butterflies attend to me

some sing me the lullaby of my dreams

some tickle me awake from my sleep.

When moon, my midnight lover, weeps

to leave me in the arms of dawn,

weeps each moonflower in the forest deep

dampening my thirst with their ambrosia sweet.

My squirrels bring me apricots and mulberries

an oriental lark braids bluebells in my hair Read more

Ode to Plantis – An indoor plant reigning over my writing table

IMG_5003 2
Plantis dearest


You, when first you came by, you were little and solitary. You refused my company, perhaps out of haughtiness and pride? But I wouldn’t blame you, for you, indeed, were most lovely, being the only living thing amidst my table and chair made of dead teak, and my books and papers of dead pine and eucalyptus. 

Your fragrance drew me to you like a butterfly lover. Your calming green caught my fancy, it did. Your silent presence comforted me. I came to you with stories of sunny romances, I watered you with my tears shed upon lost lovers, I even sprinkled your soil with my sighs and kisses, and I serenaded you in the quiet of the night.

You were a patient listener, a friend I never had. You opened up to me, one tiny leaf at a time. 

You taught me the grace of silent growth. 

You showed me the beauty in solitude. 

You whispered to me the secret of being – to embrace the soil where one is planted, to be the most beautiful being that soil ever knew. 

You told me then that being alone isn’t so bad, when in truth you have you. 

Melancholia visits me

Man in suit
(c) Fabian Perez


Melancholia visits again, 

I see him suited in grey, 

as he treads through 

the mist and the rain,

swiftly towards me. 

I hear his approaching

footsteps, that cease 

at my doorstep.

He knocks and waits

for me to let him in. 

And I do, oh I do. Read more

I have searched for muses

Hesiod Listening to the Inspiration of the Muse
(c) Edmond Aman-Jean


I have searched for muses

in faces old and new

but my pen, I’m convinced

is most enamoured by you

It lures me to trail your silhouette,

your smiling lips and melancholic eyes,

and the curl of your hair over which

silver rays linger on moonlit nights

Oh how my pen conspires

against my own heart

ceaselessly caressing your beauty

making you the sole subject of my art