Passing cloudlets, lovely ones,
So puffed up and jubilant.
How you sagely point your dainty finger
Standing on your head,
Haven’t yet trodden on the ground.
Still wet behind the ears,
Wetter still in all your whining,
Here now, gone tomorrow,
A little bit of rain.

Archway of my beginning,
Entrance to my path,
Timeless is your endurance.
How you did welcome me … for once.
And, there, you’ve remained,
Cold, stony, unmoving,
Never countenanced
A single milestone I’ve reached—why?
Why come to hate me
When you’ve failed to hate yourself?

Mighty, mighty boulder,
So old, so wise, eternally,
On your lofty shoulders
My footing is found.
Yet, how would you have known
If you haven’t overrated
The relevance of your history?
After sheltering me from the elements,
Will you now obscure my vision too?

Goodbye, O, goodbye.
Farewell to you all.
Thank you for your love;
And thank you for your hate.
Along a grassy path which craves for wear,
I shall lose me in the woods somewhere,
Somewhere in the thick of the undergrowth,
Without a footprint for guidance,
Beyond the fancies of dreamers,
In search of myself.


Colin Lee


And exiled I was last weekend, pilgriming solo to the highest summit of our town and finishing, quite dangerously, with a plunge into some wildering, Jurassic valleys at twilight.

12 thoughts on “Exile

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    1. Thank you, Ms Knutson. I don’t know what I was thinking. After finishing the hike earlier than scheduled, feeling exhausted no less, I felt a compulsion to follow nothing but a dotted line on Google Map and throw myself into that unknown forest in Tai Po Kau — which, in the old days, literally meant “leap over this area quickly”. For two hours, I was greeted by three colonies of macaques but not a single human. And I’m truly grateful to have left that potentially snake-ridden valley unscathed.

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  1. love your last stanza where you lose and efface yourself to emerge new and refreshed. hope all is well and inquiring on the fam and the story? no hurry to reply – just as always thinking about you guys over there.

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    1. Thank you, Gina. Thinking of you a lot as well. Very busy lately with work and unexpected errands, and frankly quite frustrated too, which I let loose in my imagination as delivered in this poem. On top of those, I find myself “volunteered” to a couple of additional duties. Good gracious. The story will have to wait, I’m afraid, but it can equally use a whipping up from a beloved friend. 😉

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      1. a push and little friendly smack to get you going, always happy to help!! ah Colin you juggle a young family, work and writing, its all ok to have the days and even weeks when nothing seems to work to our plan. the frustration is the inspirations gathering in clouds in your brain. let it saturate to an explosive creative beauty. may your days be always filled with the joy and warmth, stay Colin and let the rest of the world adjust.

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      2. Oh, Gina. You are my sunshine in this space. What am I to do without you? Well, I did manage to let off (not quite explosively) some creative steam tonight. At least, the engine is still huffing and chuffing slowly.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I am more simple-minded. I enjoyed the phrasing in the first stanza – the jubilant puffed up clouds, dainty pointed fingers, not yet trodden on the ground, and the whining which produces more moisture. Then you transition and get to the heavy parts. Not sure why you are thanking the woods for their hate as well as their love. Yes, this journey would have been too much as a family hike!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. And as usual, your photography is astounding. My sister-in-law is a nature photographer as well, and you two rival each other in capturing beauty the rest of us might overlook.

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