In this smart world that we live in –
Everywhere we go,
there is information technology;
Everything we do,
involves information technology.
Human behaviour has been changed
by a small device –
the most popular one of all –
among the smartest –
is the ubiquitous mobile phone.
Heads lowered, eyes glued to the screen –
as though all our dreams
are in this amazing invention;
Our emotions too,
seem to rise and fall with a quick swipe.
Like revered ancestral tablets,
they are held in awe;
Like esteemed religious disciples,
they appear humble
but possess a fountain of knowledge.
In the world of imagination,
where I can run wild,
I can be the controller of all
big and weird monsters
within the screen in an alien world.
My soul will fall into a place
that is bottomless,
yet wonderful – real yet treacherous –
my dreams and my hopes –
universal in a confined place.
Oblivious of others’ presence,
in a world of joy,
streaming with limitless news,
there’s no more boredom
nor silence or any loneliness.
Once awaken, in confusion,
I realise with shock
that my life has faded like the cracked earth
while the brilliant sun
calls out to a once-familiar world.
* Inspired by a Chinese poem shared at the Bishan Library Seniors’ Book Club on 8 June 2017.