Monday, May 22, 2017

INCUBUS


My eldest brother perished before I was born. I did not feel any attachments to him. I only saw his picture lying in his coffin, while my mom and dad were sitting beside the coffin. I noticed the sadness was deeply carved on their faces.  The next image of my brother was his grave. My mom took us to the grave a couple of  times. I remember the marble on which there were my brother’s picture and name. My grandfather’s name was also carved on the marble. Apparently they shared the same graves. I also remember the granite gravel on both sides of the cemetery. The beautiful glittery tiny stones shone as the ray of the morning sun reached the cemetry.

Time goes by,  the memory of my brother was forgotten. My mom had a rough time after my dad left her. The pain  of being neglected by someone whom you wanted to share your life with was deep. I did not know which one was deeper but they definitely kept my mom occupied. The story of my brother was hardly mentioned. His existence has turned into ashes...as to his body. We have never  heard anyword about him anymore.

On a fine day, early in the morning, my mom passed away.  She had been lying in bed for more than a year, trapped in a box called silence. We were all sad, but deep down in my heart I was happy for her. She had recorded a long-standing  life. She was almost 95. After her burial I went through her cupboard and found a pile of documents. It was hidden at  the very bottom of her cupboard. I said hidden  because they were covered with multi layers of old newspaper and plastic bags. I had no comperehension whether  the documents were a treasure or torture  to my mom.

I opened the documents carefully for they were dull, discoloured and full of stains. I was affraid I might damage the papers.  At the very top there was a tainted envelope. I did not need to open it for the glue that kept the sides together had lost its power. A pile of cards fell out. They were condolences cards, sent for my brother in 1948. One card was from my parents, they wished him to have a safe journey. One card was from my sister and brother who called my brother Boeng, which means brother. Then one card was from my father. It was the shortest condolences card ever. “My King.” The cards were beautifully hand written. My mom also kept his  medical record, including  the handwritten graph of his health. A feeling of agony thrust my chest and my heart turned sore.

My mother must have tried very hard to burry her sorrows. Underneath the envelope I saw other documents. Those were the court documents. I opened the filthy documents with the tips of my finger and the smell of mold and mildew stroke my nose. The horror struck and I was repelled.  the content inside the documents were a real nightmare. They  ripped apart my heart. I cried silently for my mother, for all the pains that she had to go through. My father called her names and accused her of things  that even the devil would have abandoned them.   I needed fresh air... I needed to get out of this dreadful, traumatic, horrendous incubus.

As night fell my eyes were widely open. As the curfew fell I decided to talk to my mother and prayed. I wanted her to know how much I adore, worshipp, and love her.

Nb. My mother had always claimed that she had a beaitufl life with her children.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

WAITING ROOM

We all sat there in rows. Silent with no word spoken. The waiting room was rather dark and chilly. I noticed the empty faces. One will never know what's inside our mind. We were there waiting for our turn to come.  The air was full of uncertainties.
A lady with two white wings appeared from the room next door. She called a name. My aunt stood and walk slowly. We followed her with our eyes. She walked and vanished into the upper room. I  noticed lines of sadness in everybody's faces. We knew that she would never came back to visit us. If we are lucky we may see her in  our dream. My mom, she wiped the tears from her eyes.
The clock was again ticking. So many seasons had gone by. My grey hair began to appear like the soft snow in winter. We were all still in the waiting  room. The squeaky door was suddenly opened. We were all startled. Another name was announced. My sister! No...no....no.... she was still so young. I expressed my anger for an instant.... but went back to my seat as I saw her go. She turned her head and looked at me... me specifically... with her eyes full of love. My tears dropped. I could hear the sound of my tears smashed against the  hard floor.  Then silent.....as my sister has faded away....turned into nothingness.
The edgy  moments were again dangling  in the sky. Nobody had the patient. My uncle began to make movements. He called for the lady and told her...let it be my turn. But nothing happened. So he gave up and waited impatiently. Luck was on his side.... the door was suddenly opened. The lady appeared. She flapped her wings while calling my uncle's name. He jumped of his seat and went to the upper room. He looked as if he knew all the way there. He forgot the fact that he left his sister in the waiting room. His sister  which  is my mother watched him closely. He left a deep cut on her chest. The cut was so deep that her heart jumped out and fell on the floor, laying ... before it turned dry within seconds.
The room has turned so cold. I noticed my mom was shivering. I knew she cried out for the  lady. But her voice got stuck  in her throat. I spotted her weary eyed. She sat in thousands of  silence. No movements. Her pulse was louder than the the west wind. Her eyes has gradually weakened. Starring to a point until there was no light anymore. She beat the lady. She ran to the upper room before the lady called her name.
I.....am waiting......Everybody's waiting..... we are here in the waiting room.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

ARE YOU THERE?

I talk to her while  she's asleep . She has been sleeping for almost a year. I wonder what is boggling in her mind . She's going to be 96 this year. She has missed her last birthday, because that was the time when she began to enter her long sleep. We all gathered together. A birthday cake with candles. We put it gently on her side. Hoping that the birthday cake would wake her up. We took turns to  wish her a happy birthday. On my turn I asked her:"Are you there?"

MOVE ON!

The election  to vote for the new governor  of Jakarta was conducted two  days ago. The quick count result has  indicated the winner. As a citizen I do vote, whoever I vote is not important to be discussed for it is my own personal choice. I am more interested to discuss the long term effect of the election. The election is over. There is a term that has been used on the net referring to those whose championed does not turn to be the winner: Move on!. “Everything is easier said than done. Wanting something is easy. Saying something is easy. The challenge and the reward are in the doing.”
The election is indeed over, but the hatred that has been spread around to support each  champion remained. Let  me take you back to  the Presidential election that occured in 2014. So much hatred were in the air. Those who claimed themselves to be the wisemen, the knowledgable person, the powerful people stood firmly to support their own champion. They threw irresponsible statements in the air, hoax and hatred speech.  The general public becomes the object. Those who have sufficient education and time selected the information they read, but those who did not have time  nor sufficient education relied heavily on the provided information around them, especially when they are readily served on your plate continously.
A philosopher claimed that the two group mentioned later are the object of power. The power is not the  ordinary power that has been  claimed so far. The power runs in  the relationships. The  injection  of power goes through discourse. The will to know brings the audience into truth of knowledge. In  simple language, their mind set is constructed by discourse, because deep down inside there is the will to know. Whatever served by the discourse will be considered as the truth.
Using race, religion, gender and discriminating people might be an excellent choice to win  the election. After the election  is over we claim that the situation is back  to normal. It is not as simple as that. The hatred that has been sown along the campaign remains in the public heart and mind. The Presidential election  is a proof. People never settles down and  remains boiling with hatred. Whatever the elected President does is always an object of  criticism of the opposing parties. Rumours spread around not less better than during the election. A rumor is a social cancer: it is difficult to contain and it rots the brains of the masses. However, the real danger is that so many people find rumors enjoyable. That part causes the infection. And in such cases when a rumor is only partially made of truth, it is difficult to pinpoint exactly where the information may have gone wrong. It is passed on and on. If one tries to go against the current, be ready to be called by any names that can amputate your hand and brain not  to mention your life.
The recent Governor election is another event that add to the process of creating new classifications among the public. We now face new classifications based on ethnic, religion, aside from the political parties, gender  issues and regional issues have prospered during the previously held Presidential campaigns. The next campaign will definitely be based again on those classifications and definitely new classifications will be added, a severe ones, the ones which will bring the public closer to the graveyeard. It is just a matter of time before the opposing views among groups will trigger the fire and burn the country. Move on.....easier said than done.