Where was I when you left this world?
Could not believe the news I heard
I was getting ready for a party
The sky was clear, so bright and sunny

Didn’t think that plans could go so wrong
But life has not been fair all along.
When I learned you passed away
The morning sunshine turned into a sad day.

And now you are one with the earth,
Where new life is given birth.
Will I find your ashes there,
Or am I breathing them in the air?

There is a hole in my heart,
But I’ll mend it through my art.
From this tree you’ve given me
I will carve myself a key.



1527 views as of July 29, 2012

The concept first originated when I noticed some time back that my pendant and blazer almost matched in colour, and I was going to name this “The Colour of Wood”. However that idea changed as I recalled a memory flashback.

Recently I wished a friend of mine a Happy Birthday; then I suddenly remembered a very sad memory around the same time a few years ago. It was my first year in university and only about a month had passed. I was invited to this girl’s birthday party. I had lots of work to do and I was debating on it. But finally I decided to go as it was the time to get to know people better. So on the day of the party I was getting ready; then suddenly I got a phone call saying that I should come home; my grandfather had just passed away…

I felt ashamed over what I was doing during the last minutes that my grandfather lived; getting ready for a party when I should have been getting work done. From then on I never went to a party during school (with the exception of one which was a bit like an exhibition; or term end celebrations).

The key around my neck was one I carved when I was 17 from a wood print block; which originally belonged to my grandfather. Now his ashes have become a part of the earth, growing into trees; some which later turn into man-made objects like my pendant.


Featured in:
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Colour Splash



Mui-Ling Teh – Art and Words from the Heart



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© Mui-Ling Teh. All rights reserved.


My art and writing do not belong to the public domain. Materials may not be reproduced, uploaded, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted, copied, edited or published in any form or by any means without my permission. Any site using my images against my conditions have not sought proper permission and should be reported or brought to my attention immediately.


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Mui-Ling Teh – Art and Words from the Heart

© Copyright Mui-Ling Teh. All rights reserved. My art and writing do not belong to the public domain. Materials may not be reproduced, uploaded, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted, copied, edited or published in any form or by any means without my written permission.

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  • WhiteDove Studio kj gordon
    WhiteDove Stud...over 5 years ago

    what a wonderful tribute to your grandfather……and you wear his love close to your heart…….
    but don’t beat yourself up for going to a party……….anything can happen any second of any day…

  • cherylc1
    cherylc1over 5 years ago

    Beautiful!! A wonderful tribute to your grandfather!

  • Pete Costick
    Pete Costickover 5 years ago

    Beautiful self portrait, love the composition, crop, textures and tones and how you’ve centred on the key. Your words and image are a wonderful tribute to your grandfather.

  • Thanks a lot for that thoughtful comment Pete; you’ve really read deep into this work.

    – Mui-Ling Teh

  • © Janis Zroback
    © Janis Zrobackover 5 years ago

    It’s true that in the midst of life we are in death…every second of every day someone is dying or being born and we have no control over it…you had no way of knowing…..he would be glad to know that you were happy the day he started on his second journey…it’s a lovely tribute and a beautiful photo..

  • Carrie Jackson
    Carrie Jacksonover 5 years ago

    Beautiful sentiment and thoughts Mui-Ling…as well as portrait showing your art. Wonderful work. ;-D

  • Almeida Coval
    Almeida Covalover 5 years ago

    it´s a lovely and beautiful foto,a wonderful tribute your granfather my friend..

  • Thank you very much my friend; very kind of you…

    – Mui-Ling Teh

  • mingtees
    mingteesover 5 years ago

    It’s lovely Mui-Ling. Great self protrait. (and nice toning too.)

  • Thank you Amy. Before finding RB I wasn’t really into photography; but now I’ve getting into it more and have been improving just by being here :D

    – Mui-Ling Teh

  • Tahnja
    Tahnjaover 5 years ago

    oh Mui-Ling….you have such a heart of love and beauty. Your story touched me so deeply…I am sure your beautiful grandfather loves you all the way from his resting place in the loving arms of the Eternal Father in Heaven……hugs

  • Rajdev73
    Rajdev73over 5 years ago

    Stunning shot

  • Jenny Ryan
    Jenny Ryanover 5 years ago

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