May 25, 2016

Grape juice into wine. Sweet, hazy, heady grape into a sweeter, headier, wine.
I like sauternes.
Sauternes are first infected with noble rot*

Yeast, sometimes bacteria- converts sugars into ethanol and CO2. the time from harvest to drinking can vary from a few months to more than twenty years.

Crushing, is gently squeezing, squeezing, the berries, and breaking, breaking the skins to liberate (liberate) the contents of the berries. Destemming is the process of separating the fruit and stem. Pressing is the act of applying pressure to grapes in order to separate juice/wine from grape skins.

Pressure. Separate.

After a period in which the wine stands or ages
(a period of
the wine is separated from the dead yeast and lees
(the yeast is dead has died)
then transferred to a new container for secondary aging.
Lees lees lees
More w aiting
During this time tests are periodically run to check the status of the wine.
Ca1, ca2. Sa1, sa2.

Wine is filtered before bottling to accomplish clarification and microbial stabilisation.

Clarification: removal of large particles which affect the visual appearance of the wine.

Stabilisation: the removal of organisms which affect the stability of the wine, thereby removing the likelihood of spoilage. the addition of permitted stabilizers.

Wine is ready

*rot. fungus infested grapes. Terribly unappealing. creates distinctive


May 20, 2016

On looking at the stars,
or chasing the shooting glimpse of glory-
not insisting on the pit of buttercup,
because all the oceans gleam in mystery.
not least, being captured by God-

in other words, what happens on nights alone.


that maybe there are certain things i need to reconcile, or at least explore. perhaps poring over headstones turns up fresh clues, rewalking old paths make some headway into the new. I don’t think it could hurt anyway.

because when my ship sank i clung to the lifeboat and demanded its sailor for compensation. when the plane took me away from the gates i hid my face on the folding tray and dazed in the night silence. when the phone calls wouldn’t come i fell to the ground and screamed. everything i did all my patterns was a settlement.

i’ve done passive, i’ve done angry, i’ve thrown pity parties for one then was the first to cast a stone. i’ve huffed and i’ve puffed and i’ve blown my whole house down. there is no one who has been more badly behaved than i.

but none of this is worth its time.

broken systems are all i’ve been digging, bible predicted that years ago, thousands of years ago.

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
For a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about your despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting —
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

Wild Geese, Mary Oliver

I confess: sometimes it shoves me right in the chest. Old photos are the biggest trigger. Times like these I would give anything to return to the freely self-centered, self-seeking past. I wish I believed I do not have to be good, that I subscribed to a less glorious Majesty.

But if I am not good for Christ, there is no where else I can go. Although- my broken cisterns beckon with their sweet-smelling foulness, and I struggle.

What is my place in the family of things; where can I go, and what do I do? I was so sure a few years ago. Now my house of cards have tumbled down and I’m sitting with kings and queens, aces and jacks scattered around my lap but it’s a mahjong table I’ve found myself at. I’m not too keen on this new game.

I find myself cooking indian dishes, dreaming of the past, grudging my present. and future. Words help me order my mess and see how much nonsense I leave to trip over.

There was a space of a couple of years where my feet were standing pretty firm. But it seems that was just a ledge before the next climb.

May 12, 2016

add a little more to positives
scale down the negative return
reply mails from old and dear
remember witty nametags the night cold and clear

contact foreigners in foreign tongue
hope for space to own
even for awhile
lands away the midnight fading
hawkers wake to get it on

urban poor make much of little
forego lunch for hotel coffee
i never was that foolish
though i lied why waffles not mcspicy

géopolitiques for teens
play for the tots
sing hymns while working
fearing the future stressing the now

but i think i’m getting better
i hope better not harder

i don’t know
but there’s something to be said for hope
even if nothing looks anything like it seemed


May 9, 2016

July 8, 2009

of course, i have so much more to say

i wish i could tell you unequivocally that i am in singapore, or manilla, or any place at all. but how can i be, when i have been to so many places in so many weeks. i would have to list this country and that, and so: i am unequivocally in thailand-malaysia-icheon-mongolia-seoul with singapore somewhere in that list. possibly only at the beginning. perhaps i should start again.

i travelled on trains and on planes, left a trail of puke and bodily fluids around the world, chattered in broken thai, mangled mandarin, all manner of englishes (yes the plural is correct) and smatterings of mongolian. i ate pad thai had makatat drank sutaa cheh. i sang in lahu in hokkien echoed korean songs i danced in the rain. i picked firewood, carried branches and stones, sat on a couch. i wore wildflowers in my hair, on my wrist, stuck it dried onto a fridge. brought my mango ladybug pasted on my waist, pegged a red one onto my plaited hair, a boy lost the only one i ever wore on my ear, broken. a pretty (live) ladybug communed with me while i sat atop a water tank, dangling my legs below rusty green metal ladders. did you know i loved that water tank.

i dreamed on it, saw horses crossing the river outside of concrete walls in cool mornings, stared at the mountains too far away, the four tiny gers planted on its valley; did you know gers move four times annually. so. i wondered as the clouds moved along the mountains’ faces; watched a white bolchimor flit across the fences. i didn’t know you were watching the same bird too. i sang up there, strummed a guitar once while another harmonised and we performed for the sky. i danced there, too. i danced while laughing and failing to follow, i danced while being videotaped.

i rode horses, stepped on the greener grasses, haloobalooed in the wind. i bandaged sprained ankles and left blood splattered on carpet. i slept in seven layers and dabbed medicated oil on my nose before i visited the shed of happiness. we shared the cloth of comfort, we traded pet names, we made up our own english. someone took my hand and drew the pleiades with our fingers. only now i don’t know if they were the seven sisters, or the little dipper, or an unknown constellation that your country owns.

we chased the moon, while others fell asleep under the stars, and snored. we brought blankets out to them, and they stumbled over us later that night. later on we saw the sun rise. our only sunrise.

we learnt words like oversleep arise befall jocular and behold. we choreographed bollywood moves, mambo dances. we gave massages and got massaged in return. we proposed and got proposed to. we got used to salty milk tea. we left our loved ones behind.

i ran barefoot in the rain, i danced while dripping wet. i went without a shower for two weeks and washed only my hair. i imitated others and got imitated in fair trade. my purple blanket got reappropriated and my glasses became common property. i learnt the lyrics of la isla bonita, and was given a mongolian name. we learnt heal the world together and ripped off black or white’s dance moves while michael jackson died. we didn’t know.

i held countless hands when i stepped on soles and learnt how to say sorry in mongolian. the death count of my belongings are an old disc, and my favourite white shoes. mongolia is relentless. but oh, so gentle.

i fell asleep while you held me, and stroked your hair when you fell asleep in your turn. you told me i have a beautiful smile, yet your eyes were filled with pain when i repeated my goodbye. you laughed when i hicupped, and yelled after i threw water at you. you made me sing along to your favourite song, time and again, taught me korean phrases, it was you i danced with on top of the water tank. you cuddled beside me in the caravan and so i was stuck when jon called me to come out for devotions. he laughed at my predicament, but i didn’t want to shift and wake you up. i was so fond of you.

i was cared for, and i was not too literal to understand. we shared water, always. i would come by you while we waited for our groups in other languages and i would bring you tea. you hurt me, once, but you were sorry you did. we talked about the sky, the moon, the mountains. you still think we saw a ufo that night. we saw shooting stars. you made it to your mountain, and after that we walked across the fields. you intruded on my private space, time and again, once when i was in pain, and later on whenever i was hiding underneath the laundry. you covered me with your blanket when i fell asleep, or so daryl claims. we listened to classical music together, and i was happy.

today i cried into your shoulder, and we searched in vain for our sky. we walked and took impulsive trips and i scratched a kitten’s head.

of course, i have so much more to say.


It was, it had been the big dipper. The things I realise seven years on, you married now and so am I. And the other an ambiguous memory. Are you still in Mongolia, riding horses like I’d never seen anyone before or since? It would comfort me if you were; one of us fully alive.

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