What Did God Say

I set yet another alert for poetry competition.
A dull ache, the slam of boredom against a world to explore,
hits the spot
between my eyes.
i close my laptop. But before I close
my laptop, I make sure to set another alert:
poetry competition Singapore
And in another heartbeat, breath bated behind lips and
tinged with hope’s loving caress,
poetry competition Singapore teenagers

As if God heard me, I hear a voice:
When did setting a limit, a boundary, a perimeter for yourself to carefully toe around, make anyone successful?
It’s okay, I respond, the steely edge of bile cutting into my throat, I don’t want to be successful. I want to be happy. 

My laptop lid shuts. It is my cellphone that
catches my attention next–I have the attention
of a frightened clownfish tangled in a net,

The notification light is green. Hence,
I have three emails.
There is that hope again, unfurling like
a midnight moon flower,
petals shifting in harmony,
in tune with the way cerebrum juices
slosh around
inside my head.

As if God heard me, I hear a voice.
The unknown , lilting accent serves me this:
Checking your email won’t do you good.
It will not  help you grow.
What will help you grow would be
to find out how the midnight flower blooms
and whether it can bloom at another time
and which time does it light up the dark
the brightest?

God is discerning, I think, with a perfunctory nod.
What he says must be truth. So I
open up Google with nimble fingers, used
to racing over the keyboard, searching for
writing techniques and poetry examples and
Jerrold Yam pdfs
and which time does it light up the dark
the brightest?

I am fifteen years old and I hear God’s voice in
my head and he tells me to eat sushi.
Confused, I go to the nearest outlet, paying with
a part-timer’s salary. Seated before raw fish,
I take out my notebook, and flip through it;
my goals,
my lines,
my mind-maps of characters I hope I can write alive,
and get to the last page.
Before I can wonder aloud, what to write,

God speaks–
as if he heard me,
I  hear a voice.
He starts questioning. I am
not a philosophical person,
not am I a botanist,
nor do I know exactly what I want (does success still translate to happiness?)
but the knowledge of knowing when the
moon flower blooms
fills the void in my chest.

I smile to God,
and I say yes.

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