Monday, January 5, 2015

Aaron Lee

Aaron Lee Soon Yong of Singapore is the author of three poetry collections, all of which are published by Ethos Books. His most recent is Coastlands (2014) which was launched at the Singapore Writers Festival in November. His second book, Five Right Angles (2007) was a finalist in the Singapore Literature Prize Awards. He has co-edited several poetry anthologies, including No Other City: The Ethos Anthology of Urban Poetry. Lee views the influential poet Edwin Thumboo as his mentor. Thumboo has said of Coastlands, "These poems possess a notable immediacy, profound resonance and imaginative unity."

The following poem is from Aaron Lee's collection Coastlands.

Psalm 23 Reprised

The jubilant chief cried, "The Lord is my shepherd,
he is all I need!" The fields were lush
and hummed with life as he wound his way
past the whispering sun-blessed streams.
so he shouted, "He makes me strong!
He heaps upon me the spoils of war!
Even against armies vast in the valley
he is ever my champion!"
At the table set by his enemies,
and wielding a leg of meat, the chief sat down at ease.
In the spoil-strewn field there was another king
with drawn sword, attended by angels.
His words were trampling war horses.
It was evening and the hills were scarlet with wonder.
A boy walked among them, his wounds weeping,
calling the names of the lost.

Posted with permission of the poet.

Entry written by D.S. Martin. His latest poetry collection, Conspiracy of Light: Poems Inspired by the Legacy of C.S. Lewis, is available from Wipf & Stock as is his earlier award-winning collection, Poiema.