Emotions: 8 Poems and 1 story about Emotional States (Asian Voices)

These poems about emotions were originally posted on the AsianVoices Website (1997-2004). This page is part of an archival version of the site.

Most of the emotions here are unhappy ones—with even the poem about hope being quite dark.

We did also have a lot of poems about the heartbreak, but these are included in the page about love: Passions


There is something in me that I want to put somewhere
I search and search, trying to grasp a past image
Fabricate an idea of the unknown
Hoping to put my little something somewhere safe
Without a landing place
It sinks to the bottom of myself
I am choked with heaviness.

~ Joanna Sio (Hong Kong)

<An impotent dream>

Crashing down on someone else’s couch in the middle of a party
A not-so-happy self had an amazing feeling totally irrelevant to the context
Around me, above me, behind me, beside me
People were dancing to the limbs jerking tunes
Moving like the leading singer in a heavily mental band
To my little semi-dreamy world I retreat
Seeing myself appearing in front of
A man
Who exists only in two-dimensional sketch
Slightly to his left I stand
With a big basket on my hands
Powerful but chaotic emotions
Swirling wildly within
The boundary of the silky layered bamboo basket
The heated mist is going to rise up
And engulf the whole scene
And engulf the whole scene it would
I am going to burst into pieces, into happiness, into non-reality
Into the long anticipated unknown and…

And right before the rupture
I woke up from over-excitement

~ Joanna Sio (Hong Kong)


Alone at night,
Alone in bed,
Alone in dreams …

Nothing in dreams,
Only darkness…

Tranquility or mystery?
Uncertainty or eternity?
Lost or found?
Assured or insecure?

Am I embracing darkness
Or is it embracing me?
We are as one now…

Where is darkness?
Within the dream?
Or within me?

Darkness in dreams ends with the dream.
Darkness in me ends …
Just by opening my eyes…

~ Carrie Chan (Hong Kong)


The times that are good go too fast,
We miss them, they always fly past.
So treasure them now,
retaste them somehow.
And this is the way they will last.

~ Jess Yim (Hong Kong)


Moon lit softly over the cosy beach.
Breeze blew, a desolate serenade.
Spray splashed, echoed in the air,
Whispered by my ear, caressed my hair.

Barefoot, bathing on the shore.
Stood there, breathing in the heavy air.
Tears rolled down and merged with waves.
With my remorse, together they flowed away.

~ Jess Yim Ka-mei (Hong Kong)

The Soul River

Unrestrained darkness in the pain
Flowing into the cemented shore
The mad current rushes into the forest
And pushes a way through

Predators of mind gaze
Beyond the secluded bay
The lure attracts attack
And finds itself intact, scornful

I stand there and watch
The soul river cries
The symphony eradicates
into words.

~ Vivian Chiang (Hong Kong).

Silver Rain on the Penthouse

Sky high
Alone by my side
My soul signs
How come days are so hard to get by
Love cries
Moon dies
Missing you and I
Blue light shines
Unseen faces lie
Lines of silver raindrops reflect
on a dozen red round tables
Time rebounds on the surface
of countless empty faces
Crowd gather
Spirits shatter
People unite in dreams
that are impossible
Air of frozen dust sinks into my lungs
I feel sick
Feeling is burning in hell.

~ Vivian Chiang (Hong Kong)


I lie
on the bathroom floor of a luxurious hotel room.

A white face towel
lies between my cheek and the hardness of the marble.
But the chill invades me through my clothes
as I watch the formation of words.

Resting on my intimacy with still life,
I converse with the anguish inside me

For years now, it has been waiting
for that eruption in my soul,
which always eludes me
too soon.

I cry, in the bathroom of a luxurious hotel room, waiting
to fall.

~ Colette W.

Lonely Night

Open the windows
faint sound of wavering leaves
I’m sleeping alone

~ Carol Ngan Lai-ha (Hong Kong)

Light Cry

The Autumn wind blew across me in the early morning. It touched my hands, my face and my chest. I shivered and tightened my clothes. Though it was early autumn I felt it was as cold as a late winter day. My house, the flowers, the grass, the trees and even a pebble occupied my mind. They resisted my steps. I hesitated to leave my village, my home.

I walked down the path with heavy steps. I could not help but to return back to the house. It seemed older than before. Bricks had been torn out and it had lost it’s colour. This was the result of years of erosion by wind and rain. But was my leaving the most important cause of the ageing? The old, experienced house protested on in silence. It seemed to warn me that there would be strong wind and rain outside, and that no one would protect me from their attack.

I said sorry inside my heart. I must go. I wanted to see the outside world, I wanted to enrich myself, I wanted to be independent. I continued my journey. Small wild autumn daisies were blooming at the side of the path. They, the recluses, the retired scholars in the hills felt sorry about my leaving since they were losing my companionship. They bloomed with unhappiness, a deep hurt inside their hearts.

I avoided looking at their faces and sped up. I was afraid that they would retain me. I came across a stream that was flowing to paddy fields.

I could hear the sound when water hit rocks and barriers in the stream. The sound was no longer a beautiful and nice song. It was a crying voice. It seemed to persuade me not to leave. I attempted to comfort her but the crying became louder and louder. I could not tolerate it. I used my hands to cover my ears and ran over the stone bridge quickly. I had to resist the crying, escape from the faces of the house and the daisies and everything in the village. Finally I reached the bus stop. I dashed into the bus.

The bus started. I couldn’t help looking through the window. The wind breezed through the paddy field. It caused wave after wave. The paddy plants moved up and down. Were they waving to say goodbye to me? The waves became smaller and smaller gradually and tears blurred my sight.

~ Doris Cheung Yim (Hong Kong)

AsianVoices Archives: These poems and stories were originally posted on the now-defunct AsianVoices website (1997-2004), which featured poetry and fiction by young Asian writers. Copyright belongs to the original authors. If you are the writer and would like to remove, add or edit this work, please contact me at zijun01@gmail.com and I will promptly carry out your request.

  1. Bloodlines: Family
  2. Passions: Love & heartbreak
  3. Edible Words: Food
  4. Life’s Journey: Innocence & experience
  5. Scenes: Everyday life
  6. Requiem: Death & remembrance
  7. Reflections: Self-discovery & spirituality
  8. In Class: School life & education
  9. In Transit: Travel & transportation
  10. Destinations: Places
  11. Nature: Animals & the environment
  12. Muses: The creative process
  13. Conflict: War and its effects
  14. Kids’ Corner: For younger readers
  15. Pets: About, for and by pets
  16. Friendship: Cherished bonds
  17. Emotions: Emotional states
  18. Haiku: Concise poems
  19. Brushstrokes: Chinese-language works
Return to AsianVoices

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