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Word Count: 621
In the poem Void Deck by Alfian Bin Saat the poet establishes the Singaporean Identity by using the term void deck as the title of the poem The term is unique to the Singapore context as it is not used in any other country The poem is also filled with the voices from the HDB heartland which many Singaporean readers can closely relate to The poet uses phrases such as wet market stanza 1 verse 2 stone-table chessboard stanza 5 verse7 and caged birds stanza3 verse3 to portray the familiar sight at the void decks of HDB flats The poem also reflects the nature of Singapore housewives in the verse 1 and 4 where it states that the neighbourhood wives trade snatches of gossip after a morning at the wet market Its shows that the wives are gossipmongers and had plenty of time on their hand to be able to laze around after the marketing session in the morning The verse Lazy daughters who by some miracle or mistake always score well in class is reflecting that the mindset of many Singaporeans especially the older generation who favour boys over girls in the family This issue is very true especially for the older Chinese as it is in their culture that they perceive boys as being superior due to the fact that they carry down the family name and should be treated better than girls who belong to the husbands family once they are married In stanza 3 verse 1 the poet describes the elderly as sages This suggests that the elders are respected by the younger generation or it could also suggest that the elderly perceive themselves as very wise beings and more knowledgeable than the young The elderly are often very obstinate and would insist that their way of handling matters are better as the one of the Chinese saying the amount of salt I ate is more than the amount of rice
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