Charlotte Unbound

October 25, 2015

This poem was published in The Other Merlion and Friends (2015). It was a featured a poem on Singapore Poetry.

11 (small)
Charlotte Unbound

Mr and Mrs Lim used to read well-loved classics
To little Charlotte to sow the seeds of aesthetics.
At five, she would fly to the Literature section
Of a library and soon – to great expectation –
She was reading the poets, some verses from each one.
Meanwhile, her teacher saw a different trend begun
And called her parents down to show how she was spelling
April with two Ls, tiger with a Y, then ending
Lines with dashes, would not use a capital letter…
So they stopped her nonsense, got her a piano teacher
For there was not just no future in Literature,
It was also mangling her English.

Gwee Li Sui


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