YeYe / 爷爷

They say grief is a word of love.

They say, like all things, with time, this pain too, shall pass.

I resent that.

I resent when people say, “she did not take it well.”

What is that even supposed to mean?

How does one take anyone’s death well?

What is it like does it mean, to have learnt to deal with grief? To just, learn to live with it?

Illusion cloaked in a step forth:

It doesn’t really get easier, no.

A year has gone by since,

But this will never be my new normal.
Deafening silence. Now,

the screen is almost always dark,

the volume no longer penetrates doors –

the peace we tried to keep with you on your refusal to try the hearing aid –

infinitely louder is this new quiet, infinitely insufferable.

I am sorry.
Deafening silence. Now,

your sonorous laugh I cling onto in my head,

your “nou, jiak lo” calls up the stairs I can no longer respond to,

your shuffling slippers on the marble – one, two, three, one, two, three – the rhythm of your steps I can no longer count,

your songs you sing to yourself on the white garden chair, thinking you are alone, looking out at the trees which gave way to highways over the years – I try so hard, so hard to recall.

I am sorry. 
Your presence – You – I never knew, every day,

how precious – Sorry – I am sorry

I am trying so hard,

to live right

by you,

to live how you would have wanted me to.
Deafening Silence. Now,

nobody calls me nou anymore.


Nou (n.) : A term of endearment; child. Teochew dialect.

Jiak  (v.) : Eat. Teochew dialect.
I have tried to write about you, many, many times. This might be the fourth or fifth post I’ve tried to write about you. I don’t know what it means that I delete them every single time. All I know is that I still miss you, every day.


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