The Wild Side of Singapore

Singapore up close, very close. In this compilation of video clips taken around Singapore in 2014, Anthony Quek shows the beauty of close attention. After watching it, you may be inspired to submit poetry and prose to the forthcoming anthology From Walden to Woodlands.





Anthony Quek bought his first DSLR camera in July 2007 and became interested in nature macro photography in October that year. He has produced two other videos of Singapore wild life, The Wild Side of Singapore and The Wild Side of Singapore II. His photography blog was a Merit Winner in the “Environmental Blogger of the Year” category of the Asian Environmental Journalism Awards (2014). In 2009 he was named Canon Photographer of the Year.


walden to woodlands publicity

Call for Submissions to From Walden to Woodlands:

It’s been over 160 years since the publication of Walden, Henry David Thoreau’s classic reflection on nature, simple living, and spiritual discovery. Does Singapore have its own literature that draws upon nature for spiritual meditations? At first glance, it may seem that the lack of any great lakes or (natural) breathtaking waterfalls in the concrete jungle of our city leads us to miss out on an experience of the sublime. But does the vibrance of our oft-overlooked natural habitats – rainforests, mangroves, and even roadside trees – alert us to the fecundity of our flora and fauna? And does our natural heritage prompt our appreciation, respect, and even intimations of the sacred?

From Walden to Woodlands is an interfaith anthology of poetry and prose about nature in Singapore, under the ‘Ignite Faiths’ programme supported by the Ministry of Culture, Community, and Youth (MCCY). The anthology will be published by Ethos Books. The editors welcome submissions from any faith perspective (or none) that draw inspiration from flora, fauna, or natural habitats, or that explore– on a larger scale – humanity’s relationship with the environment.

Submissions should not be ‘religious poetry’ in any straightforward sense, or any kind of banal, proselytizing verse. Instead the editors are seeking: (a) entries in which the writer’s faith informs or enhances an appreciation of nature (like Gerard Manley Hopkins’s ‘The Windhover’), (b) entries which feature local flora, fauna, or landscapes in Singapore (e.g. Grace Chia’s ‘Kucinta at Raffles Place’), (c) entries which express the writer’s experience of the sublime in nature (like Elizabeth Bishop’s ‘The Fish’); or (d) entries that engage with faith traditions not of the writer’s own (e.g. a Muslim response to Hopkins’s ‘God’s Grandeur’, or a Buddhist take on the poetry of Rumi).

In mid-2015, the project will culminate in a book launch and open-mic session, during which all contributors and interfaith practitioners have the opportunity to gather and share their writings, ideas and insights.

Submission guidelines here.


About Jee Leong Koh

My book of poems Steep Tea (Carcanet) was named a Best Book of 2015 by UK's Financial Times, and a Finalist by Lambda Literary. I also wrote three other books of poems and a book of zuihitsu. My work has been shortlisted for the Singapore Literature Prize, and translated into Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, Russian and Latvian. Originally from Singapore, I live in New York City, where I edit the arts blog Singapore Poetry, and run the Second Saturdays Reading Series and the Singapore Literature Festival in NYC.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: