Worker writes

Lamp post by Mohor Khan

Streets with no madding crowds, its traffic melodious

spotless as the hearts of the civilized people of this city

diverse with crafted monuments

Trees nurtured as carefully as children

Among their branches the kokila sings

with the magical voice of forever spring

Everyday, with the perfect touch

of the bottomless love of my heart

this city, mother Singapore, has turned into

the chariot of the world

riding on the extravagance of youth

Day after day I labour

Layers of this city are infused

with the salty smell of my sweat

Today I am a mad city lover

Have I forgotten

My mother, my motherland?

My wife waiting for me all this time?

The child who will carry the flag of my family

Have I forgotten him too?

Every night, sleepless in the same dream

The underground train of dreams moves relentlessly

And the greed of money blurs my destination

At the delta of my dreams

I am as lonely as a sodium lamp post

Slowly in the dim light of my dreams

enters the miserable cry of my son

In my loneliness I can hear him say:

Father, when will I go to Prince Bazaar

holding your hand?

The dream of reaching the sky

riding on your shoulders is over

I have learnt to walk, run

Father, I have grown up

I have learnt to forget your dear existence

Father, I have grown up

Every night, unable to sleep

I turn into a nocturnal creature

I am not only a migrant worker

I am the lamp post of a family

This is my favourite poem i saw in the migrant worker poetry competition 2015. Even though it is a runner up poem in the poetry competition, it took the first place in my heart.

I like this poem as it was very honestly written. The poem wrote that even though he loved singapore, he loved his home country too and how he had selflessly sacrificed so much for his family. The memories and experience that could be shared with his family, especially the part where he wrote about his son and how the lack of time spent together affected their relationship. I can see that it meant a lot to him as these memories and experiences can neither be bought once you have missed it. However, he had no choice as it was for the interest of the family that he work in singapore to provide a better future for his family. Hence, describing himself as a lamp post of a family.

I was able to relate this to my own experience and i believe many families in singapore feel that way too. With the cost of living in singapore rising both my parents are required to work to support me and my siblings. This results in very little bonding times for my family to forge bonds and the effect of it is surely apparent. I Think that bonding times and bond forging is very important in the family as it is what keeps the family united. Through unity, family can accomplish great things and overcome great obstacles. Hence, no matter how busy when i have grown up. I vow to assign good amount of time for my family.

This poem competition also opened my eyes to the true definition of life long learning. Even though he is working as a construction worker, he shared that he have never stopped writing stories and constantly improving himself. This is really motivating because if i was in his shoe i would feel that there is no point to study as it would not improve how i would perform as a construction worker. I think this poems should be shared more for students and workers to teach them about the value of life long learning and how important it is.


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