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Issue #1676      March 11, 2015



Your ear, enclosed tenderly by his mouth.
Surrounded by the sweet odour of living things,
a moment passed in time and place.

Staying lizard-still, stone-still
on a rock outside the execution house
in Singapore, a lizard rolls its eyes at the sun.

Behind the walls of Changi
the barbarian’s henchmen lead you
to the trapdoor, the collapsible floor
and the noose.

A maid-servant-slave from the Philippines,
your children locked out,
Singapore police with machine guns and
dogs are on watch at the prison gates
because there are seventy thousand like her in Singapore.

Cheap labour, sex for tourists, bashed, sometimes murdered
with no one brought to book; though there is no blood visible
on the clean city streets
there are tyrants
in the corridors of power.

Thousands come onto the streets
in the Philippines in anger
and with tears of mourning.

The tiny lizard, as though startled, turns its head
then disappears from the rock
as if snatched away by an invisible snare.

Another victim is hanged in Singapore

Flor Contemplation, a Filipina who was employed as a nanny in Singapore, was one of six million poor workers from the Philippines who are employed overseas, mostly as domestic help. Convicted on trumped up charges of murder, she was hanged in Changi Prison on March 17, 1995.

Next article – Western media exploits Nemtsov’s death

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