Radically Chinese

for Eric Mottram: 1924-1995 (not because of any debt, felt or incurred)

one stroke a point

leftstroke bent


two a cover man

man enter eight borders to cover ice

table receptacle

knife strength

wrap spoon basket

box ten to divine

seal cliff private

also mouth enclosure


scholar follow

walk evening

great woman child

roof inch small

lame crooked corpse

sprout mountain stream

work self

napkin shield

tiny shelter

move on

join hands

a dart a bow

pig’s head feathery

to pace heart spear door

hand branch

tap writings

measure axe square not sun


moon wood owe

stop evil kill

do not compare hair family air water


claws father

change a frame a strip




dark jade



sweet produce

use field

bolt of cloth

sick back to back

white skin dish

eye lance arrow stone

spirit to track grain cave

erect bamboo rice silk earthenware net

sheep feathers old

plough ear

brush flesh officer from self reach

a mortar tongue opposed boat a limit

colour grass tiger

insect blood do clothes cover

see horn





reptile shell red


foot body

cart bitter time

stop & go

city new wine separate village

metal long gate plenty

reach to a bird rain

azure false face

rawhide leather leek

sound heading wind

fly eat head fragrance

horse bone high

long hair fight wine cauldron ghost

fish bird

salt deer



yellow millet

black embroidery toad


drum rodent nose

even teeth drag on tortoise flute

T. Wignesan

If I might be allowed to say so, I think my "first" love was poetry. Unfortunately for me, the British curricula at school did not put me in touch with the Metaphysical Poets, nor with the post-Georgian school. Almost all the school texts after World War II contained invariably Victorian narrative poems and some popular examples of Romantic poetry. I chanced upon a selection of T. S. Eliot's and Fitzgerald's Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, and a little later on Pope's An Essay on Man and Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. That did the trick. Yet, I regret not having taken to prose in earnest earlier than the publication of my first collection: Tracks of a Tramp (1961). There's nothing like trying your hand at all kinds of prose exercises to come to grips with poetry. Or rather to see how poetry makes for the essence of speech/Speech and makes you realise how it can communicate what prose cannot easily convey. I have managed to put together several collections of poems, but never actually sought to find homes for them in magazines, periodicals or anthologies. Apart from the one published book, some of my sporadic efforts may be sampled at http://www.stateless.freehosting.net/Collection of Poems.htm

Last updated November 14, 2011