Writings/ Photographs/ Poetry/ Archives
A Holly Lee and Lee Ka-sing online magazine. Published on Fridays.




Holly Lee
Song of Replanting: a mimic sonnet in three parts

Prelude to the poem:
I’ve been thinking of trees, flowers and gardens lately, in their natural environment. I am not surprised at all to find a tin can flower popped up in my head at the same time. It came from a poem I wrote many years ago, when I was still working in Hong Kong as a bank clerk in some high floors commercial building. Like a re-visit, I typed down my fragmented thoughts. The next instance I hallucinated myself to become that flower in the can, my slender body waving as I poked through the hole and looked outside. Through the windows, I recognized the ferries, the pier, the harbour and the buildings on the other bank. Snapped out of my reverie, I wrote two more parts, and without an intention it became something like “a mimic sonnet in three parts”. I wasted no time to locate the poems I wrote more than forty years ago, and rediscovered the inspiration was actually from two different poems: Connaught Centre 康樂大厦 (1974) and Tin Can Flower 罐頭花 (1976). How fragile and tricky memory can be! Over the years, I have subconsciously merged the two poems into one, and replanted a third, now a new poem.


Four decades ago
I planted
rain Lily
and Jacob’s ladder
in tin cans
inside a holely building
bearing hundreds
round windows
outside, the sky
curious birds flew by (mind the windows!)
over the ferries
the clouds
the harbour


I am Con naughter
I am Jar diner
I am retro
I am bold
52 stories and 179 metres
I have 1700 arseholes
in case you wonder
I was the tallest (in 1973)
the oldest (avant-garde that time!)
proudly standing
five decades, while you
gentlemen, my peers
loose teeth pulled
with advancing years


This Del Monte can
that Nestle container
life without respect
our faces pale, no seasons felt
how anemic
how desperate
feed us fresh air, loam soil
sweet rain and sun glow
stop Miracle-Gro!
stop wishing for rainbow
like you break
the chain of an hour
freely lunching, by water

(September 2020)



Lee Ka-sing
Tse Chi Tak visited on June 2nd and gave us "KING HEAVEN AND EARTH QUEEN”, his recent book on the demolition of Queen's Pier. Somehow, the waterfront also reminds me the development of Hong Kong Photography

Mixed media: Pine wood, archival inkjet print on paper, acrylic medium
Size: 620mm x 86mm x 35mm
Year of work: 2013


On June 6th, a poem in Chinese texts was translated from the picture version, a few days after the work was created.






"Heaven King and Earth Queen", a book of photography by Tse Chi Tak
Published by Hulu Concept  (2009)
Book designed by anothermountainman



Issue 0911-2020

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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leekasing.com is a portal website for current and earlier works. Apart from exhibitions, Holly and Ka-sing use extensively web platforms to display photography and writing projects. Contact us for a detail list of links.

Holly and Ka-sing currently live in Toronto with their daughter Iris, and their cat Sukimoto.


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