Highlighting the poetry of Lydia Gah

In August 2020 Lydia Gah published her account of surviving domestic violence, she also shared some of her poems with Ples Singsing Blog

Behind the veil Melanesian Culture

Shrouded behind the Mysticism of Melanesian culture,
Lies an untouchable Monster.
Racking lives of blossoming Roses,
Once the pride of families, clans and tribes.

Towering menacingly high above dark clouds,
Onlookers simply and indifferently look on,
As if paralysed knowing not what to do,
For they say, “it is the Melanesia culture”.

All the while the blossoming Roses, 
Their iridescent lights slowly but surely fade.
Changes thus far into a dry, unwatered patch of lawn,
Where once stood beautiful beds of roses.
Exuding beauty in different colours and fragrance,
Their absence felt by those who loved them.

“If only, if only”, the living lamented at their passing
Still behind the veil of Melanesian culture,
The monster exists and perpetuate - domestic violence.


From the war-torn wreckage, of broken homes,
broken villages, and broken lives,
Came oh so slowly a figure,
Bandaged head hobbling, one arm in a sling.

Those who saw that ghost emerge,
Will never forget one thing,
The smile on the ravaged face.

A child, as children do, had to ask,
“Why do you smile when you are so injured and so hurt?”
“Because I survived” came the reply,
Still, the smile was there.

The Cage

Some bars are of gold,
But mine were only rusty wires.
Into some rooms the sun would shine,
But into others there were only shadows and darkness.

Some are cared for tended and loved,
While others are left to die of hunger,
Even when fed three times a day.

Then, God’s Will took its turn that day,
And my guiding angle looked on with a smile,
As the hinges screeched with rust,
And left the gate undone,
And the bird was FREED!!

The beauty of a butterfly

Such a beautiful thing
Its blue blinding floss in the sunlight
We can but look on in wonder
That we are so blessed with such a treasure

The arrogant and spoilt, caring for little,
Emotions at the ready, with little regard for what is beautiful,
And should be cherished. 

Sling short up and fired without a thought,
The body crushed, and the blue floss fades,
The child looked on and suddenly is overwhelmed,
With the waste, the stupidity, and destruction,
Of something which now can never be regained.

If only experience and knowledge,
Were as easy to gather as things of beauty are to destroy.


Ms Gah is selling her book independently and is also raising funds through the sale of traditional PNG crafts, coconut oil and CDs of songs in her Nakani mother tongue and Tok Pisin to recoup her self-publishing costs
Useless was my name
Given to me by another
So, what!
Why should I care?
What do they know?

I am better than them
That, loll in riches and luxury
My experience is my fortune
And nobody can take that from me

I am what and who I am now
Because of what has gone before
Not useless, but proud
And will remain proud and strong
Until my day on earth is done

Published by Ples Singsing

Ples Singsing is envisioned to be a new platform for Papua Niuginian expressions of creativity, ingenuity and originality in art and culture. We deliberately highlight these two very broad themes as they can encompass the diverse subjects, from technology, medicine and architecture to linguistics, music, fishing, gardening et cetera. Papua Niuginian ways of thinking, living, believing, communicating, dying and so on can cover the gamut of academic, journalistic or opinionated writing and we believe that unless we give ourselves a platform to talk about and discuss these things in an open, free and non-exclusively academic space that they may remain the fodder for academics, journalists and other types of writers alone. New social media platforms have given every individual a personal space to share their feelings and ideas openly, sometimes without immediate censure. The Ples Singsing writer’s blog would like to provide another more structured platform for Papua Niuginian expressions in written, visual and audio formats while also providing some regulation of the type and content of materials to be shared publicly.

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