Bush Bashing

By Khoo Ee Hoon and Claire Leow Editor’s note: When Raymond and other guides discover tombs, they conduct research and try to incorporate these into tours organized by all things Bukit Brown. This is to give you a taste of what happens before we unveil these tombs.   On any typical weekend, tomb whisperer Raymond Goh is “bush bashing” or looking for the tombs for those seeking his expertise in locating grave plots. Here he consults the friendly tomb keeper [...]

History You Can Touch

By Lyra Tan Ai-Ling Today, my mind flits back to Bukit Brown and the stroll I took yesterday (April 21, 2012).   Yes, the cemetery. Sure it’s not exactly rolling hills. But the well-trodden paths among the lush rambling greenery and the bits of bush you have to push past, slapping twigs and leaves leaving streaks of rainwater and mud all over your clothes has a strange charm that appeals to the inner adventurer. Nevermind the fact that I had [...]

Bukit Brown (a poem)

         bukit brown   i                       cheng meng   pre-cheng meng the tombs well marked not by colourful squares not by fuming incense but by uniform vertical white stakes shafted a bit to the left little men in white with blood colour numerals hastily stenciled on like condemned running dogs   ii                     634A   this is grave to be marked by a used tyre and untamed creepers the only one with the suffix A like an upstairs [...]

Bangsawan In Singapore

Bangsawan and the Bukit Brown connection. One of the earliest impresarios of  traditional Malay Opera is buried in Bukit Brown and is highlighted in Group 2 Tour. The Beginning of Bangsawan in Singapore by Norman Cho  Before the advent of the television or the sound movies, theatrical performances were the few forms of entertainment available to the masses. One of which was the Bangsawan. The Bangsawan (Malay Opera) troupes consisted of professional Malay actors. The origins of the Bangsawan probably originated from the [...]

Memories – Myths

Memories – Myths Zaobao, March 25, 2012 Extract: Art Festival General Manager Low Kee Hong : The pace of our development is getting quicker, every generation needs to preserve their memories, from the Railway Station, Methodist Girl School old school site to Bukit Brown Cemetery. But finally we are not unable to keep these environment, only preserve these memories in digital photographs or in our memories. But will these memories of ours became myths, lost poems or finally lost? He [...]

Walk of Fame, Darkly

by Andrew Tan In Bukit Brown Cemetery, an avenue, like prime real estate, connects Singapore’s prominent families—all inter-related, as these powerful cliques were linked by arranged marriages to perpetuate their wealth and influence through six generations, during 150 years of British rule (1819 to 1959). Chronology 1819-1867        Beginnings The earliest Asian elites in Singapore were comprador-kapitans from Malacca, who brokered with European (mainly British) companies, exclusive credit and arms deals.  To procure native products for Europeans, compradors resourced from powerful [...]

Serendipity by Serene

By Serene Tan “Why nobody visit?” These were the exact 3 words that appeared in my dream sometime between 1998 and 1999. In this dream, I was standing in front of a long rectangular table that separated me and a group of  shadowy figures .  One of the figures stepped forward and sat down on the table facing me. I caught a quick glimpse of him and could roughly make out his physique and features although he was in the [...]

Pangolin Sighting!

    On the evening of April 22, there was this rare sighting of a pangolin by Konamoto Dominic, who often frequents Bukit Brown, the resting place of his ancestors. This was at Hill 3, the largest of the hillocks at Bukit Brown Municipal Cemetery. There are eight pangolin species, also known as scaly anteaters, according to SavePangolin.org. The site says: “Pangolins, often called “scaly anteaters,” are covered in tough, overlapping scales. These burrowing mammals eat ants and termites using [...]

A Saturn Moth

By Victor Yue There have been many beliefs in the relationship between the butterflies (or is it moths) and the departed. But as many might know, there are many species of butterflies thriving in BBC. Many of which might be hard to find in the concrete parts of Singapore. And even so in BBC, in the shaded areas, away from the crowds, there are beautiful butterflies. Like this Saturn who just loved an occasional Orange juice. You would need to [...]

Romance of Three Kingdoms stories

By Ang Yik Han     A panel from a tomb near the main gate with a story from the Romance of the Three Kingdoms Guan Yu, seeking his elder sworn brother Liu Bei after leaving Premier Cao, happened to run into his other sworn brother Zhang Fei. Zhang Fei was wary however on account of Guan Yu’s long stay with Cao Cao and attacked him. Although Guan Yu protested his innocence, Zhang Fei did not believe him and told [...]