They say the haze will linger, but there are slivers of blue sky out there. For our second issue, we are delighted to present writers and artists who cut through the drab with their clarity of vision.
Fiona Kain’s graphic illustrations of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland may echo the grey-scale of the recent Singapore skyline, but are anything but unfocused. With sharpness and wit, she brings an edge to a long-time favourite. To find out more about how Kain works and what inspires her, read our Q&A with her.
If you feel the haze has crept into every corner of your house, clear it out by having a look at “Homemaking as Therapy”, photos by Tan Hai Han and text by Brendan Goh. Together, they illuminate the nooks and edges of the everyday, interrogating areas of our lives that lie forgotten, yet speak volumes of ourselves.
Deborah Chow’s poems look at life a little sideways too, offering new perspectives in a sudden turn of phrase. The past weighs down the present in three poems by Troy Cabida, but, at the end, its grip seems loosened and flight to where the air is clear seems possible.
Lina Lee's colourful paintings thrust us into the here and now. Some are painted using a ‘blind’ method, revealing the striking beauty in chance. Likewise, the inscrutable gaze of H Ng’s drawings of shelter cats invite us in, but never quite yield their secrets. Nor does the paper lion in Tan Xiang Yeow’s "The Beginning of The Beginning of An End", the first of two poems from this assured new voice we are featuring. That lion remains elusive; a creature forever coming into being.
Everything slips away, even the most intense encounters and experiences - but not before they have seared themselves in our hearts. Tammy Ho Lai-Ming’s poem “Too Too Too Too” and an excerpt from Charmaine Chan’s yet-to-be-published memoir The Magic Circle share the pain, as well as power, of remembering.
We hope that these pieces will bring a breath of freshness to your literary and artistic air. Our warm thanks to all our contributors for sharing their work with us.
Eva Aldea, Clara Chow, Christine Lee and Yen Yen Wu
We Are A Website editors