The twin cinema, created by Singapore poet Yeow Kai Chai, is a rigid, yet spectacular poetic form that mixes constraint with possibility. Its twin columns can be read vertically down as discrete poems, yet you can also hop across the space between skyscrapers and find meaning that bridges the gap horizontally for each line. The twin cinema can be used to contrast two opposed points of view, or find a common bridge stretching across a seemingly insurmountable gap – the art of juxtaposition, after all, is at the heart of modern cinema.
In this anthology, poets from the twin cities of Singapore and Hong Kong tackle the challenge of the twin cinema form in tandem with their own interpretation of lines that bind or divide us. We share a familiar postcolonial history, rich financial centres and trading ports bustling with energy, in the shadow of a hinterland yawning across the water. Yet we also rival each other ceaselessly, and are cleaved by language, geography, and politics. This is fertile ground for a poetry of proposition or opposition – and may it grow cities.