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Lion Heart
Presentation
Amanda Chong
Singapore poet.
Lawyer trained in Cambridge and Harvard
Wrote poems in the lunch breaks, 11 years old
A winne...
Merlion
Is a well known marketing icon of
Singapore, a mythical creature with a lion's
head and a body of a fish. It is wi...
Stanza 1
You came out of the sea,
skin dappled scales of sunlight;
Riding crests, waves of fish in your fists.
Washed up, ...
Washed up, your gills snapped shut.
Water whipped the first breath of your lungs,
Your lips’ bud teased by morning mists.
...
Vocabulary
Dapple: marked with spots of a different shade or color, having patches of shade and
light.
Crests: highest par...
Stanza 2
You conquered the shore, its ivory coast.
Your legs still rocked with the memory of waves.
Sinews of sand ran acr...
Vocabulary
shore: the land along the edge of a sea, lake, broad river, etc.
ivory: the hard white substance, a variety of ...
Stanza 3
In the jungle, amid rasping branches,
trees loosened their shadows to shroud you.
The prince beheld you then, a g...
Stanza 3
Your eyes, two flickers; emerald blaze
You settled back on fluent haunches;
The squall of a beast. your roar, you...
Amid: surrounded by; in the middle of.
Branches: a part of a tree which grows out from the trunk or from a bough.
Loosened...
Stanza 4
In crackling boats, seeds arrived, wind-blown,
You summoned their colours to the palm
of your hand, folded them s...
Vocabulary
loam: rich soil containing a relatively equal mixture of sand and silt and a somewhat
smaller amount of clay.
s...
Stanza 5
Centuries, by the sea’s pulmonary,
a vein throbbing humming bumboats –
your trees rise as skyscrapers.
Their ankl...
Vocabulary
hum: to make a low, continuous sound
bumboat: incompetent or worthless boat
heave: o raise or lift with effort
Stanzas 6, 7 and 8
Remember your self: your raw lion heart,
Each beat a stony echo that washes
through ribbed vaults of bu...
Vocabulary
stony: Hard, unemotional
ribbed: patterned with ridges
vaults: crypt for burial
flung: to throw(past of fling)
...
Literary Analysis
Structure: 8 stanzas, the first 5; 6 lines each, stanza 6 & 7; 3 lines each and the last
stanza two line...
Conclusion
The poem is a patriotic poem about Singapore, which is Chong´s country. This poem is dedicated to Singapore
and...
The Title
The title, is crucial for the poem, as it is a patriotic poem about Singapore. ‘Singa’ translates as lion in Mal...
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Lion Heart

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Lion Heart

  1. 1. Lion Heart Presentation
  2. 2. Amanda Chong Singapore poet. Lawyer trained in Cambridge and Harvard Wrote poems in the lunch breaks, 11 years old A winner of the Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award. Gender and justice and her academic writing has been published in the Harvard Journal of Law and Gender. Lion Heart, sixteen.
  3. 3. Merlion Is a well known marketing icon of Singapore, a mythical creature with a lion's head and a body of a fish. It is widely used as a mascot and national personification of the country. It was first used in Singapore as the logo for tourism.
  4. 4. Stanza 1 You came out of the sea, skin dappled scales of sunlight; Riding crests, waves of fish in your fists. Washed up, your gills snapped shut. Water whipped the first breath of your lungs, Your lips’ bud teased by morning mists. The ‘you’ refers to the figure of the Merlion in the first instance. By extension it could refer to all Singaporean. ‘...out of the sea’ ties into the way Singapore is linked into the sea for its economic prosperity. ‘Riding’ gives the impression of the Merlion’s skill and mastery over its aquatic element. ‘... Waves of fish in your fists’ gives the impression of the merlion’s gigantic size.
  5. 5. Washed up, your gills snapped shut. Water whipped the first breath of your lungs, Your lips’ bud teased by morning mists. ‘Your gills snapped shut’, the merlion seems to be adapting to life on land. ‘Water whipped’ the repetition of the letter W emphasises the verb. The expression ‘lips’ tackles the sense of growing and adaptation into the land. The use of personification here gives a sense of appeal. There is also an alliteration of the letter M.
  6. 6. Vocabulary Dapple: marked with spots of a different shade or color, having patches of shade and light. Crests: highest part. Fists: the hand closed tightly with the fingers doubled into the palm. Gills: looking Tease: to irritate, bother or anger. Mists: a mass of tiny drops of water.
  7. 7. Stanza 2 You conquered the shore, its ivory coast. Your legs still rocked with the memory of waves. Sinews of sand ran across your back- Rising runes of your oceanic origins. Your heart thumped- an animal skin drum heralding the coming of a prince. The first line suggests that the merlion, which is this mythical beast that represents the country, went out of the sea and arrived to the land of Singapore. The merlion had scales on its body that shone like burnished metal. The sand made markings on its back that looked like some historical writing that proved its "oceanic origins". The animal’s heartbeat sounds across the island like the beat of a 'drum' that heralds the arrival of a prince.
  8. 8. Vocabulary shore: the land along the edge of a sea, lake, broad river, etc. ivory: the hard white substance, a variety of dentin, composing the main part of the tusks of the elephant, walrus, etc. Sinews – the tissue connecting muscle and bone; Runes – a type of lettering from old Germanic languages; Thump: blow with something thick and heavy, producing a dull sound; a heavy knock. Herald: To proclaim, especially with enthusiasm; announce or acclaim.
  9. 9. Stanza 3 In the jungle, amid rasping branches, trees loosened their shadows to shroud you. The prince beheld you then, a golden sheen. First line: this gives a sense of something dry, unpleasant and harmful. Second line: it seems that flora also responds to the needs of the merlion. Being shrouded in shadow makes the creature seem dark. Third line: ‘Golden’ conveys a sense of value and greatness to the Merlion. ‘Sheen’ portrays the image of an attractive lightning. The prince was expecting the merlion to reveal something to him.
  10. 10. Stanza 3 Your eyes, two flickers; emerald blaze You settled back on fluent haunches; The squall of a beast. your roar, your call. First line: ‘emerald’ suggests both sparkling and great worth in the merlion’s way of looking. ‘Blaze’ indicates wildness and strength. Second line: the merlion has ‘settled’ in the land that will become Singapore. It seems that he did this on ‘fluent haunches’. This was maybe because he is prepared for attack or defense. Third line: “squall of a beast”, a squall is a sudden, localised storm, often at sea, but also a cry out. It is conveyed that the merlion is a very powerful creature. There is an anaphora, the repetition of ‘your’. The word ‘roar’ represents the voice of the merlion and of Singaporeans. The roaring represents triumph.
  11. 11. Amid: surrounded by; in the middle of. Branches: a part of a tree which grows out from the trunk or from a bough. Loosened: make (something tied, fastened, or fixed in place) less tight or firm. Shroud: wrap or dress (a body) in a shroud for burial. Beheld: to observe; look at; see. Sheen: a soft lustre on a surface. Haunches: one of the back legs of an animal with four legs that is used for meat Squall: a sudden violent gust of wind or localized storm, especially one bringing rain, snow, or sleet.
  12. 12. Stanza 4 In crackling boats, seeds arrived, wind-blown, You summoned their colours to the palm of your hand, folded them snugly into loam, watched saplings swaddled in green, as they sunk roots, spawned shade, and embraced the land that embraced them. This stanza describes how the Merlion has been with Singapore all along through every stage as it grew up as the great nation that in the present is “watched saplings swaddled green...and embraced the land that embraced them.
  13. 13. Vocabulary loam: rich soil containing a relatively equal mixture of sand and silt and a somewhat smaller amount of clay. swaddle: to bind (a newborn infant) with clothes to prevent free movement. sapling: young tree spawn: any person or thing thought of as the offspring of some other thing, idea, etc.
  14. 14. Stanza 5 Centuries, by the sea’s pulmonary, a vein throbbing humming bumboats – your trees rise as skyscrapers. Their ankles lost in swilling water, as they heave themselves higher above the mirrored surface. The fifth stanza describes how the city eventually starts to grow at an incredible speed “your trees rise as skyscrapers”. Now, the writer´s beloved city is as high as it has ever been.
  15. 15. Vocabulary hum: to make a low, continuous sound bumboat: incompetent or worthless boat heave: o raise or lift with effort
  16. 16. Stanzas 6, 7 and 8 Remember your self: your raw lion heart, Each beat a stony echo that washes through ribbed vaults of buildings. Remember your keris, iron lightning ripping through tentacles of waves, double-edged, curved to a point- flung high and caught unsheathed, scattering five stars in the red tapestry of your sky. Analysis: These last stanzas, are referred to both the Merlion, and the Citizens of Singapore. These stanzas remind them of their pride and power. Stanzas 6 and 7 start with: “remember”, and that is why they try to remind the merlion of his lion heart, and how powerful he is, as he gave origin to the nation. The poem ends with stanza 8, and a metaphor, making clear reference to the Singapore's flag. Again, this last stanza tries to show the power of the merlion, the power of Singapore. Metaphor
  17. 17. Vocabulary stony: Hard, unemotional ribbed: patterned with ridges vaults: crypt for burial flung: to throw(past of fling) unsheathed: remove from protective cover scattering: Action of sprinkling
  18. 18. Literary Analysis Structure: 8 stanzas, the first 5; 6 lines each, stanza 6 & 7; 3 lines each and the last stanza two lines each Theme: Pride(Chong is proud of her nation), Love for your nation and Patriotism. Tone: awe, respect and admiration. Rhyme: no specific rhyme scheme.
  19. 19. Conclusion The poem is a patriotic poem about Singapore, which is Chong´s country. This poem is dedicated to Singapore and its “Lion Heart”, as it describes its origins. The whole poem is referred to the Merlion, which is the emblem and the most symbolic creature for Singapore. The poem uses the Merlion to symbolise the majesty and pride of Singapore as a nation. Chong also describes the mystical strengths of the creature as it came out of the sea, captured the island and established the city state of Singapore. This creature is the one with the lion heart, and in a way it transmits it to the nation, also transmitting his power. Chong´s objective with the poem, is to remind the citizens of Singapore to appreciate how far Singapore has come, and how powerful the nation is.
  20. 20. The Title The title, is crucial for the poem, as it is a patriotic poem about Singapore. ‘Singa’ translates as lion in Malay with the ‘pore’ simply representing city. That is why Singapore is known as the Lion City. Chong is clearly connecting with that, but she chooses to focus on the lion’s heart, which tells us about Singapore's role in the world. A heart supplies blood to the body and keeps us alive and so the city is being presented as a vital organ for the region, and for the world. The title clearly tries to show how important Singapore is.

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