Author
Margaret Devadason

Poetry
REMEMBERING QIN’E

Not many people know that the great Chinese scholar Jao Tsung-I spent five years in Singapore as the first Chair and Head of Chinese Studies at the former University of Singapore. Appointed to an eight-year term in 1968, he left prematurely in 1973. This poem, which he wrote on his departure, now appears in English for the first time.

Poetry
NANTAH LONGINGS

The former Nanyang University (Nantah) continues to have an influence on the Singaporean Sinophone imagination today despite the closing of the university in 1980. We present in this issue translations of poems by two graduates, expressing their sense of loss and longing for their alma mater.

Essay
MOTHER TONGUE

What is a Mother Tongue to a Singaporean abroad? What is a Mother Tongue between a mother and a daughter exposed to different cultures? In this humorous but provocative essay, filmmaker and educator Woo Yen Yen reflects on the rich emotional significance of language and the experience of raising her daughter as a Singaporean based in New York.

Prose
THE SEARCH

The collaborative work of a group of students at Dunham High, this short story depicts an individual’s journey towards and away from isolation. Written in Chinese and translated into English, it examines the importance of forgiveness, reconciliation and the transformative power of love.

Poetry
REQUEST

Written in Tamil by respected Singapore media professional Saba Muthunatarajan and translated into English by his daughter Saaradhaa Muthunatarajan, this poem is a celebration on life in the face of death, inviting readers to reflect on the value of experiences of all kinds, and the joy offered by a graceful ending.