Monday, August 06, 2012

Waiting For The Next Breath...

The first time it saw her was during her 21st birthday. She came with a group of friends and they had a picnic. She drank her first champagne and got a little tipsy. She declared to the group that it was "horrible" to be the buddy friend all the time. She was the one whom all the guys could go to for a listening ear. But why was she always seen as a buddy and not as a girl?

The second time she came and sat down on it, she was holding a letter. She did not say much. She just read and wept. The letter was written to her by a guy whom she loved much. It gave her comfort because he accepted her love for him although he could not be with her. He was given a higher calling. She sat there remembering how they met and how she felt in her spirit that they were going to be good friends despite not knowing him then.

The third time she came because she had a broken heart. She didn't know where to go as her boyfriend had just broken off with her. She sat there in silence and tears just kept falling. For many days, she would come back to sit there. All she could do was to hum a special song. It was a song about a stubborn kind of love... The kind of love that was unconditional from her was the only way she could keep herself from dying inside. It took her a while, but she healed slowly but surely.

The fourth time was a strange moment between the lady and a guy friend. They never met each other in real life but she was able to connect with him somehow. They wrote notes and left them under the bench. They took turns to write lines of a poem together. It was the most amazing connection she has ever had with a guy. One day, he disappeared without leaving any notes. She knew that would happen in her spirit. So she wished him well as she sat in the silence of the woods.

Many years had passed. She did not come back to the bench. She was afraid to be reminded of those memories. Yet she knew that she didn't like the waiting. She knew the waiting took a toll on her. In her heart, she wanted so much to believe that there is someone out there for her. But as the years grew, she began to tell herself to be realistic and learn to be alone.

The bench would sit and listen to her sighs. Each time she would sigh and take a deeper breath. As she breathed, she would learn to take a longer breath. There are times when she wished she could stop breathing, maybe then her heart would not hurt so much inside. But she continued to breathe each time.

This evening, she did the same thing again. She sat and closed her eyes and breathed. As her spirit grew tired, she fell into a deep sleep. A gentle breeze blew a strand of her hair fringe onto her face. Then ever so gentle a hand stroked the strand of hair away from her face. A face came near as the breath grew stronger. She was sleeping but she felt a warmth that came over her. She took another deep breath and this time she felt different. It was as though that warm breath filled the gaps in her heart and brought new life into her body. She knew something had happened. The breath that came with the gentle breeze had entered her body and stayed inside. All she could think of was the feeling of a peace that extended into joy. She felt as if she was being held by tender arms.

Today, she came by herself again. She sat down and let go a big hearty breath. It felt strangely light. She looked radiant and rested. There was something different about her contenance. She is still waiting for him who is to come. Yet now she waits with a new heart sustained by the breath of the One who loves her.

By momoko69

Tuesday, July 17, 2012


The night was young and the air was cool and still. But soon that was interrupted with some heavy and resigned footsteps and rhythmic sobs. Hunched over in sorrow and pain, the man found the bench that he was looking for; sat himself down and sobbed away. He had thought for a moment, maybe a slightest moment that perhaps this time was different, this time was for real, this time it would last. This could be it...but was it?

The bench listened in, with his ears perched and just quietly listening. His young friend was here again, he was privileged to be part of this young man's journey. Often coming when the night had fallen and people gone, that this young man would come and sit and just reflect. He loved listening to the rhythmic breathing of the young man, he was always real and without pretence. Calm at times, tumultuous at others. He liked this young man and had certainly gone through a lot in his life. Experiences that have scarred, wounded and shaped him to be the man that he was. But the bench knew that there was more.

There was something special about this young man. He could sense that there was a potential that if only the young man could realise, that it would serve as a springboard to set him free. Like the span of an eagle's wings, to spread his wings wide and fly. The bench would like to see his friend discover that freedom and soar. He knew that it would happen in time. The young man would have to be transformed from within, in order to be free to soar. But until then, the bench would be hopeful that the young man would be transformed in time.

Many days passed, the young man was not in sight. The bench sensed that there was a change in the man, he didn't know what it was but it was good. One day when the night was down again and the air was cool and still, the bench heard a familiar voice but this time an immense joy was ringing with the voice. Ah...the transformation did take place. But wait, there was another which the bench had never heard of. Soon, the young man and his companion were in sight. They sat on the bench and chatted. The bench knew that this was a union to be.

At last, the young man has found his wings and soared. Freedom.

The bench remembered the young lady too, from a long time back but she had missed for a long while. He smiled knowingly, the young lady had found her wings too and soared. Freedom.

Yes, freedom.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

In Memory Of ...

The Ant Explorer
by C Michael James Dennis

Once a little sugar ant made up his mind to roam
To fare away far away, far away from home.
He had eaten all his breakfast, and he had his ma's consent
To see what he should chance to see and here's the way he went

Up and down a fern frond, round and round a stone,
Down a gloomy gully where he loathed to be alone,
Up a mighty mountain range, seven inches high,
Through the fearful forest grass that nearly hid the sky,

Out along a bracken bridge, bending in the moss,
Till he reached a dreadful desert that was feet and feet across.
'Twas a dry, deserted desert, and a trackless land to tread,
He wished that he was home again and tucked-up tight in bed.

His little legs were wobbly, his strength was nearly spent,
And so he turned around again and here's the way he went
Back away from desert lands feet and feet across,
Back along the bracken bridge bending in the moss,

Through the fearful forest grass shutting out the sky,
Up a mighty mountain range seven inches high,
Down a gloomy gully, where he loathed to be alone,
Up and down a fern frond and round and round a stone.

A dreary ant, a weary ant, resolved no more to roam,
He staggered up the garden path and popped back home.

One of my favourite poems which I first chanced upon during Voice Production class in NIE, where we had to dramatise a poem as a group. Great fun then!

This talks about an ant's journey, much like what life is...where we leave the safe havens and plunge into something totally new, totally wild, just to satisfy that wanderlust in us. Perhaps there's more to it? Perhaps.

I used to dramatise with my class, read it in class. Thereafter, made the kids make a little map explicitly showing the route that the ant took, and made ant models too (One clean ant for when it started its journey, another dirty one on the flip side of the ant for when it resolved no more to roam.) As their group dramatised the poem, ther other member was to take the ant for a walk along the path that they had drawn.

Amazing what some groups could do, the pictures just displayed so much colour and imagination. More often than not...just with a brief explanation and some photographs to mark out the locations that the ant took...the class took over with their creativity and drew like never before! Others just dramatised the poem so well, marching up the mighty mountain range, seven inches high and so on and so forth. Somewhat like a little Hi5 show.

Each group was unique in what they presented, some with much zeal and vigour...others were shy and reserved. But...they did it, they lived out the journey that the sugar ant took and after which, had to write a short write-up on how the ant felt before taking the trip and after taking the trip.A little experiential learning class...everyone laughed, some sulked, immaculately and beautifully drawn pictures, others plain. It didn't matter, what mattered was that the sugar ant got to live in them for that little while.

Fly, imagination...soar to the sky.

I miss that, miss my classes today...very much. In memory of the classes which I took, thank you for being a part of Mr Lee's life. It's certainly been heartfelt and you (all of you) will hold a special place in my heart.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Their story

Tearfully as he sang,
"When God made you"
he watched her
walking down the aisle.

She walked gracefully
like a practised ballerina
on her toes

Stepping into the hall,
only as she walked closer
that she realised
it was him singing.

When she first heard it,
she thought how sweet.
Playing our song,

Blinking back her tears,
she fought hard.
Smiling she mastered,
focusing on him singing.

How blessed he felt,
how loved he was,
despite his past,
there he stood singing.

Choking back tears,
forgetting lines,
though was once perfect,
lost between sobs.

Gazing into her eyes,
all he could master
was embracing her tight,
and let out another sob.

They recounted
with much bliss.
The bench settled in
shrouded with love.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

~ Unconditional Love ~

The bench watched as three friends walked towards it to sit down to rest their tired feet. The two ladies chatted animatedly as the guy got busy with his handphone. It all started out as mere remarks but it became a bad scene. Angry words exchanged, the guy walked away. Two ladies stared at each other, wondering what had just happened...

Many days passed... the bench never saw them again. It wondered if the situation was ever resolved. A lady walked up to the bench and sat there staring at the river front. She sighed as she looked at her handphone... as if it was a diseased thing. The bench remembered her as the lady who spoke the most to the angry guy. She sighed another heavy breath and started to talk to the bench. "You remember me?" asked the lady. "Yes, it was you who had a row with that friend of yours." said the bench. The bench wished it could give her a hug as she looked quite lost and bewildered. They spoke a long while and the bench understood that it had not been an easy friendship for her.

As she spoke, her heart spoke louder. She talked about how she long for her friend to understand that she had no intention of making things difficult for him. All she ever wanted to do was to be a supportive friend. Somehow each time, she would say or do the 'wrong' thing, it made him very mad with her. She felt so tired and speechless each time. She wondered why God kept telling her to hold on to this friendship. She questioned the point of staying put where she is.

After her sharing, the lady looked up and saw a beautiful scene. It was amazing! The clouds hid the sun and rays just shone outwards. In her heart, she heard God saying, "I have loved you for a long time with an unconditional love. I know you can understand how it feels like to be loved unconditionally. Whatever you had done, I have forgiven you. I still love you no matter what you will do in the future. Go and do the same for your brother..."

In the months to come, the lady came back a few times to share with the bench about many positive changes in their friendship. The trio would celebrate their birthdays each year and this year, it was important as one of the ladies was about to get married. The bench was a witness to their future wishes and dreams. All of them wrote into a piece of paper and the lady who loved unconditionally folded all the slips carefully. She promised them that these dreams will be kept in special boxes. They promised to open the boxes after 5 years.

Everything seemed so perfect, the bench thought. Their friendships have grown mature and all of them have mellowed much in the past years. Yet, if there is a scale to calculate how much each person has put into the friendships, it would be unfair to one or the other. Somehow someone always gave a little more... The bench turned to the heavens and asked God, "Who is most unconditional?". God smiled and looked at the leaves of the tree that stood beside the bench. "Have you ever counted these leaves?" asked God. The bench looked up at the tree and said, "I've lost count how many leaves have come forth and were blown away?".

God nodded and said, "You are right, if we should keep count of the leaves that have grown and fallen of this tree, we would miss seeing its growth and glory." "You see, it is by looking at this tree as a whole that we truly appreciate the beauty of the tree in becoming what it was meant to be." "When it was a young sapling, everyone would look at its weak stem and say that this young one would not survive the harsh winter." God chuckled as He remembered how the young tree survived the first winter.

"Look at it now... the tree has gone through many seasons. It understood the ways to survive." "Just look at the trees around it..." God pointed out the two other trees that were just next to this tree. The bench suddenly noticed they were connected by their deep roots and sturdy trunks. It seemed like each tree had survived because of the other trees. Without their support, they would have been badly hurt by many elements, both seen and unseen. "Over the past 4 years, I have seen their pains and struggles but I have also given them each other to bear them." With that thought, God left the bench to ponder about the things that He has shared with it.

The bench looked at the trio who sat down to share a lovely meal and it looked at the trees that were swaying with the wind. It kind of understood what God meant. Friendships are given to us unconditionally. No one is forced to be friends. We choose to remain as friends for life. In true friendships, you will see unconditional love demonstrated over and over again. If you truly love your brother and sister, then you can truly understand the love of a Creator for His creation.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Right here

Looking out into the horizon,
Sitting on that same old bench.
Together, side by side,
Nary a word, just looking.

Though no words were being said, the bench knew that the two of them were thinking the same thoughts. Recollecting the past, the moments in life that was caught in freeze frames. The good times, the bad... The times of laughter, the times of tears, the walks they had together, the drives they had together, the times they sat together just chatting and testing.

Just like good old friends.

Being able to continue the sentence of each other, without much of a prompting. Flipping the album of memories, shared over the bench. The bench had seen how this friendship had blossomed, how it had grew strength to strength. Weathering even the harshest of circumstances.

Though he had disappeared for a couple of months, leaving her at the bench waiting, alone. She had quite a bit of get used to, looking to the side where he used to sit but just seeing the empty space. Looking on to other benches, but seeing couples and friends occupying the bench. Smiling and laughing, she relived those good old days when they were there.

Seasons changed, it was autumn. Leaves were a falling, the area a washed with leaves: different shades of yellow and red. There she was, still...waiting for her friend to return.

Winter, spring had passed. Soon summer came. She took a stroll into the park again, sitting at the bench where she always did. Rubbing her eyes to make sure that they were seeing right, right there...sat her friend. He was back! With quickened and light steps, she reached the bench. Taking a seat beside him, looking out into the horizon where he was looking. Sharing the same view that they had taken all this while. Picking up where they had left off. Right there.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

All Work No Play?

It's all a game to her...
With her Armani suit.
There she is heading...
One more goal!
Working ever so hard!
One more chance...
And she will be there.
Sitting on the bench,
With her soggy sandwich.
There she is thinking,
One more chew...
Munching ever so quietly.
One more bite,
And she will be done.
The game is over now...
No more Armani suits.
Where is she heading?
What goals can she make?
She worked so hard...
What chances does she have?
She could not get there.
Crying on the bench.
With her soaked hanky
Where she sat thinking
What chewed at her?
Her games munched her up!
What make her lose her bite?
She has not got her justice done.

Bench: What do you cry today?
Lady: It's so unfair!
Bench: Life is unfair...
Lady: I worked so hard...
Bench: Work is a calling!
Lady: I was born to do this!
Bench: Work makes you feel important.
Lady: It makes my self worth!
Bench: Do you know my Creator invented Work?
Lady: Who? What? Why?
Bench: He believes that Work is Creation!
Lady: To work is to create?
Bench: For every piece of His Work, He sees bountless beauty.
Lady: That must be His Labour of Love!
Bench: To Him, Work is never laborious!
Lady: Hmmm... work is never laborious...
Bench: I am His Work of Love.
Lady: He must enjoy His Work.
Bench: Always... my friend... Work should be fun!
Lady: Then I guess I must learn this.
Bench: I guess you must... let Work be an honour, let it be a blessing unto others.
Lady: *sniff sniff* I guess this is all new to me! But I want to try it...
He sounds so happy to work! I want to be happy again! Tell me more about Him!

So they talked and talked about their Friend.
The bench chuckled as it recalled the stories about His Creator.
She smiled a little more as she listened to these stories.
It uplifted her heart and reminded her of some familiar feelings.
She knew that Work will never be the same again.
She knew that she wanted to learn how Work should be...
From the very beginning... where Life first began!