Poem: The Junes & Decembers of my youth

The Junes & Decembers of my youth

They were spent:

Over barbecue pits
Testing our stomachs
With half-done chicken
Stealing illegal sips of beer
At East Coast;

Asleep on a derelict pier
With stars for company
Shining like pinholes in the darkness
Our shoulders yet unburdened
With the weight of the real world
In an untouched corner in Pulau Ubin;

In blazing afternoons
Tasting salty warm winds
Spiced with sea spray
Hours of sandcastles
And soccer in the sand
Sunburned at Sentosa.

We were young and carefree
We didn’t mind the sweat and grim
We could last for hours, even days
Without baths and creature comforts

Those were the Junes and Decembers
Of my youth

Ivan Chew
11 June 2004
[Originally posted at Seeds_o_Light]

Just some snippets of my memories of the June and December school holidays in my youth. Since Jan’s poem, I’ve been thinking about a “summer holiday” poem on and off but couldn’t really get it started. Tried to put something down tonight but gave up.

Then just before I went off to bed, the title came to mind and the rest just flowed (albeit a bit jumbled). It’s kinda “raw” and probably can do some technical refinements, but I think I’m quite happy to leave it as it is.

In truth, most of time during the school holidays was spent reading Sci Fi and Fantasy at home, drawing and sketching. But that seemed
kinda dull so I left it out of the poem.

East Coast is a beach/ park on the east side of Singapore island (where else!). Still a favorite site for barbecues and midnight strolls.

Pulau Ubin is a small island from Singapore by boat. Used to be a granite quarry. Still a popular place for mountain biking and nature walks.

Sentosa is an island resort, now linked by a causeway, just 10mins ride by bus. Frequently criticized by locals that the attractions are expensive etc. so most usually frequent the lagoon there instead.