Eddie Tay

A Grain of Sand: Poems from Hong Kong

Originally from Singapore, Eddie Tay has lived in Hong Kong since the early 2000s, thus gaining inspiration for his writing from both cities. In the poems on his newly adopted abode, he adroitly captures the fast pace of Hong Kong, its rapid changes of colors, habits, disguises, and speeches.

He presents this postmodern mosaic of a city with its pieces floating in constant movements, but he takes care to allow hope and possibilities peep through the fleeting gaps. The concrete surfaces of the city thus become malleable in the hands of the poet, opening up to yield thoughts and rhymes that transform alienation into creation.

In the poem “Cantonese,” the poet asks, “I wonder if it is possible to thread syllables / through lines of red and green taxis.” The answer is affirmative, The Mental Life of Cities (2010) and Dreaming Cities (2016) being his recent volumes of poetry.

Concrete 2010
Cantonese 2010
This island 2010
Neighbours 2010
how hong kong works 2016
city 2016
i know my charles baudelaire 2016


Eddie Tay