Editors’ Introduction

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Editors’ Introduction

Dear Readers

We seem to see five all around us. Our bodies have five fingers per hand, five toes per foot, and five appendages, if the head is counted as the “ruler”. Our experience is perceived through five senses – sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell. And the natural phenomena which comprise our world can be understood by the universal framework of 五行 (wu xing, or five elements). This ancient Chinese wisdom explains the relationship and interaction between the elements of nature – wood, fire, earth, metal, and water – and the (qi, or life force) that flows through them. Five, some say, is the number of humanity.

Issue 5 of Inscribe, featuring the creative and analytical writing of five undergraduates at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, explores a range of issues and ideas significant to our human condition – our differences, our struggles and changes, and questions about our future and fate.

Author Wong Xiu Wei has envisioned a future in which humankind has the benevolent and much needed help of Guardian Angels. Is there hope for a happy ending? Find out in her gripping fantasy short story Let There Be No Light.

Some scientists argue that humans experience the world differently depending on their native languages. Celia Liu investigates this fascinating topic in her essay Rethinking Linguistic Relativity: Does Language Shape our Thought?

It has been said that there’s nothing constant but change. Author Li Zuchen, Mike, explores the battle line between conserving traditions and accommodating modern beliefs and attitudes in the feature article Tasty Meal or Man’s Best Friend?

Humanity is facing a world marked by the consequences of extreme weather, and is debating the complexities of climate change. Author Gautham Gopinath highlights this important issue in the essay Climate Change: Investigating the Hurdles to Action, shedding light on reasons for our collective lack of action, and also analysing the topic from a moral perspective.

Finally, take a quiet moment to enjoy a selection of poems written by Chatty Indrawan. Inspired by her own curiosity and travel experiences, the poems Altitude, Time-lapse, and Unfinished give a strong impression and provoke deep thought.

We invite you to explore Issue 5 and appreciate these engaging works. Join us in giving a big “high five” to our PolyU student authors for a job well done.

Yours faithfully

Chrissy Burns, Editor-in-Chief
Adam Barker, Editor-in-Chief

Inscribe is hosted and supported by the English Language Centre of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University.


  • Chrissy Burns
  • Adam Barker

Editorial Panel

  • Dr. Jack K.C. Chun
  • Adam Forrester
  • Shari Lughmani
  • Andrew Morrall
  • Dr. Bruce Morrison
  • Dr. Jane Robbins

Faculty Editors

  • Kay Chan
  • Caitlin Feenstra
  • Dr. Tim Lee
  • Phil Todd


  • Cameron Darcy
  • Dr. Tim Lee
  • Freeman Tai
  • Bonnie Wu

Director of the English Language Centre

  • Dr. Bruce Morrison

Senior Faculty Advisor

  • Shari Lughmani

Founding Editor-in-Chief

  • Dean A. F. Gui