Philosophy of Beauty

Poetry For The Soul

Here is a collection of poetry written by Dr. Teo Wan Lin about her reflections on beauty. As a naturalist, she draws inspiration from the world of plants, insects and botany for her writings.

She hopes it will bring beauty to your soul.

Sharing a poem that I wrote a few years ago. If you are going through grief today, I hope this will help you, as it has helped me and my family members I had shared it with.
May your ashes turn to beauty💓.

From Ashes to Beauty

A friend said today
Look at the stars
They are dying
They are light years away

Did you know
The light we see
Is from the past?
From the decaying ashes

The death
Of a star.

See those ashes
Falling from the sky
Yet our human eyes
Perceive it as light

The dying star
Twinkling alive in the sky.

Have you ever seen stardust?
It’s the ashes of a star
When she burns up the night sky
Knowing one day
She will disappear, burning up this way.

Yet day by day she burns up in her glowing flames
Almost as if she knows
She’s beautiful this way.

There was a time
I looked up at the night sky
And suddenly I saw stardust falling from the galaxy
I felt alive
This moment I knew I may never see it again.

Afraid, I wanted to close my eyes
Hoping it was a dream
To forget I had ever seen stardust in the galaxy
But it wouldn’t go away.

Startled, I stretched out my hands
And saw the dust slip right through
There were dancing on my fingers
And they slid into emptiness
The dark galaxy of emptiness.

Then I remembered what my friend said
The light from the stars
Shines from the past
The dying star with its ashes
Of stardust.


No one took a second look at me
I was all of a fierce green brown and yellow
My body creeping on the ground
And up I went upon the thick green trunks
Alas upon a leaf I found my rest
There … I could feast!

So I ate and ate
One day I found myself too heavy
My lids too began to droop
Where would I find a place
I wondered
Away from those monstrous winged creatures of the sky!

I wandered a little..
And there as if someone had known
Was a cocoon prepared right in front of me!
I crept into it just moments before I lost my last strength
And I fell asleep..

In my dream
There was a garden
A splash of vivid crimsons violets and sky blues
I saw the most brilliant creatures
Fluttering rainbow coloured wings
Of myriad hues and patterns
I was jealous !
Now if the brown yellow and green on me
Would just grow wings and fly!

It got colder and colder in the cocoon
And I fell into the deepest sleep
I would have thought
That I had died.
I found my body oh so stiff , as I cracked my bones
I realised I had aged.

Memories of my childhood came back to me
Without mother or father,
I learnt the ways of the garden
Alone on my own.
There I had also seen those beautiful wings
Of the heavenly creatures
I would never be
As I crawled on my belly.

My dreams ended one fateful day in that cocoon.
When I grew too tired and stiff to think.
I took a look at my body, it was a skeleton I could not recognise.
It became clear that I would no longer be the same, and there I breathed my last.

Before I bid thee adieu
Let me tell of a wonder
One bright morning
I stretched my paper- thin wings
I opened my eyes
And Lo ! They were yellow green and brown
My heart fluttered a little
Could this really be?
I lay still a while
Moving those wings
And then I soared.