Poem- 7 (7.1)


Teesta Review: A Journal of Poetry, Volume 7, Number 1. May 2024. ISSN: 2581-7094


 Just Two Guys on the Astral Plane

--- Jee Leong Koh


How’d you get here so fast? Saint Peter asks. So I say

I had a seven mile jump on all the rest.


We were thirty-eight thousand feet above Charlotte

I say; knowing full well he knew full well and was

testing my wiry candor.


 I know it was the wine I say


He then quoted the heavenly manual:

You come when you’re called and wait in the queue.

But I’m here now if ever I was I say.. My BP cuff

still tight on my arm.  My shoes untied


My shirt undone. My hair a quiff of its former quaff.


Hey Pete I say,  unrepentant.

We’re just two guys on the astral plane

rooting for the same team. C’mon, just what did

the Big Man say?


You’re in, he said. Now wait right there.







--- Jee Leong Koh



Adrift (a-drift): adjective and adverb
In a drifting state-        drifting         un
certainty - incertitude                          and doubt.

     Doubtfulness and dubiousness –

               a hes -i— tation - - - suspense,

       Per - plexity or an embarrassment, A Dilemma,

         BeWiLDerMenT - a puzzle, a quandary,

                 timidity etc, etcetc and

in termination,    Vague        Hazy                   FOGGY

     an obscure ambiguousness. An OpeN ?. A blind
bargain.    A  PIG IN THE POKE and a LEAP In tHe darK.

a fallibility we all feel, an      un-Reliability we all un -     TRUST. A pre-cariousness. I hesitate when I'm ADRIFT.. .. I flounder.... I miss my way.. . .1 Wander AIMIessLy;

I beat about

I lose myself I lose my HEAD and I PerPlex Those Around ME and

I POSE , I PUzZlE and confUse, conFOUND,, BewilDEr and I doubT      



I'm uncertain, unsure, casual, ranDOm       and aimless, doubtful, dubious,

INSECURE and Un -  stable. I'm InDeCiSIVE for sure and ir-resolute and 


            undecided, undetermined and ?able; experimental and TENTATIVEly


I'm vague. Indefinite. Ambiguous.   Equivocal.
Undefined, confused, in mysterious, cryptic and veiled obscurity.
Undefinable!_    ORACULAR!!                      Perplexing!

Enigmatic AND pArAdOxIcAl,  Apocryphal and Problematic

Cantankerous!          FalliblE,     questionaBLE - - - debatable- - -

UNTrusTWorthY        unreliable. and ir-responsible
SO, don't deal with me when I'm puzzled, pickled, perPlexed
OR I'm lost ADRIFT at sea, at fault at

loss of I'm at my wit's end.........distracted............and

distraught..................      A     D     R  I     F       T…



Jee Leong Koh is the author of Steep Tea (Carcanet), named a Best Book of the Year by the Financial Times in the UK and a finalist by Lambda Literary in the US. His hybrid work of fiction Snow at 5 PM: Translations of an insignificant Japanese poet won the Singapore Literature Prize in English fiction. His latest Carcanet book is Inspector Inspector. Originally from Singapore, Koh lives in New York City, where he heads the transnational literary organization Singapore Unbound, the indie press Gaudy Boy, and the journal of Asian writing and art SUSPECT.