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A Holly Lee and Lee Ka-sing online magazine. Published on Fridays.




Lee Ka-sing
Listening to one of the two CDs by Forbidden City Chamber Orchestra, I purchased it in a short trip to Guangzhou early this year

Mixed media: Pine wood, archival inkjet print on paper, acrylic medium
Size: 690x138x35 mm
Year of work: 2012






(a note) This piece was created in the year 2012, one from a series (MOBILE POETRY LAB) of poems that I “wrote”, by means of using my previous photographs as picture vocabularies. The good thing of Picture Poem is, it doesn’t require translation for audience in order to get into certain layer of the work. I have to admit that, this was one of the reasons the series was original created. However, after finishing some of the Picture Poems, I have also tried to “translate” them into text-based (in Chinese) poems. A transformation, and a bonus.




Sushi Grass in Paradise (A story)

written by Holly Lee
with photographs by Lee Ka-sing

(67) To build a curbside garden

“If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.” Said Mrs. Bento to her husband, who was busy watering the bodhi, hibiscus and ficus plants. "I didn't invent it, it was Cicero, a Roman philosopher. I read it in an article in today's paper. We have some sort of a library don't we, but we don't have a garden," sighed Mrs. Bento, "and the pavement circling our building outside is only littered with dog shits."

One beautiful evening, with the sun mildly set and a cool breeze still whistling, Ginger, Chai and the Bentos decided to take a walk along Queen Street. A lot of shops have closed, or out of business. Those survive the pandemic, say cafes and restaurants, can only open to the maximum of fifty percent indoor capacity, but more people prefer take-outs, and the city has designated more area on the street to allow space for outdoor patios and sidewalk terraces. By now people are used to the habit of lining up, it is normal to see queues in front of supermarkets, bakeries, animal hospitals, drugstores and the ever popular cannabis shops. This city has gained back some lives, more people on public transport, more people walking and bringing their dogs out to socialize. Used masks and dog poops are everywhere.

"With most businesses dead, or still on hold, what are in the job markets right now?" Doubted Mrs. Bento. "Definitely food delivery!" Said Chai. "Back in Hong Kong, my friend Roady, a professional performer unemployed for months, has taken up full time job as a food deliverer by scooter. Business is good in densely populated city like Hong Kong. A good work day of eleven hours can bring in almost a thousand dollars, that's approximately two hundred Canadian a day! Here, we might not be able to earn as much, but surely business for food delivery services like Uber Eats, Foodora, DoorDash, Tim Hortons are blooming."

"And PPE too," complemented Ginger. "Like masks and gloves, cleaners and sanitizers. Manufacturers of acrylic shields, floor decals reminding social distancing, all these businesses are extremely in demand."

"For hygiene's sake, maybe they should add a small prompt to the floor stickers, to remind dogs and their owners to keep poops out of the pedestrian walkways too." Said Mrs. Bento, looking a little disgusted as she said.

"The dog shit problem will not go away," Said Mr. Bento. "But if you maintain and keep the surrounding area clean, it might encourage people to take more responsible action. I suggest, to improve the outlook of our building, we should consider cleaning up the pavement adhered to the rim our house, all along the edges, up to our property line. We can create some planting area, there is more than enough space to build a curbside Garden."

A curbside garden, why not? Ginger thought. She has taken on the interest in growing small indoor plants these days. Already she has a small varieties of pothos plants: golden, neon and satin. Two kinds of spider plants, zebra and airplane, and one sanseviera laurentii, a two-foot snake plant and considered one of the best air-purifying plants among houseplants in general.

A curbside garden. A garden for the public. A garden that attaches itself so dearly at the foot of our house. It is a big commitment, and a serious question - what should we grow? It is then Mrs. Bento realizes she, as a Canadian citizen for sixteen years, is not that Canadian after all. She knows nothing about gardening, not the national Winter sport ice Hockey nor the national Summer sport Soccer. Her mentality is still that narrow grasp of 'pan knowledge', a worldview attitude gliding practically on the surface of everything, but lacking the in-depth understanding of a single thing - say for as simple as what most Canadians are routinely tasking - the truly basic and down-to-earth act of gardening.


"Sushi Grass in Paradise" is an on-going story. To read the full length version with previous chapters, please visit- https://oceanpounds.com/blogs/sushi-grass-in-paradise



Issue 0904-2020

A Holly Lee and Lee Ka-sing online magazine. Published on Fridays.
Published by Ocean and Pounds and archived at oceanpounds.com
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Holly and Ka-sing currently live in Toronto with their daughter Iris, and their cat Sukimoto.


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