Pernah dengar cerita

Sore merangkak lagi, sama seperti kemarin
dengan muka tua penuh murka
tersiksa panas semen dan beton
yang terhampar menutupi seluruh permukaan kemaluan
yang dipenuhi borok ketamakan dan kedunguan.

Aku pernah dengar cerita,
orang minum air putih
dipinggir jalan
dibawah teduh pohon bunga.

Kata-kata sore ini hanyalah
mayat-mayat yang coba dihidupkan kembali
oleh pria cabul yang menggenggam perangkat pintar
dimana dia menonton orang telanjang.

Esok akan datang, dan lihatlah nanti
sesuatu yang luput dari perhatianmu.
Orang-orang yang terpakai oleh pakaiannya,
dikendarai oleh kendaraannya,
manusia yang menjadi perangkat yang menempel pada perangkatnya.

Sore akan datang lagi, diikuti malam.
Dan kita tenggelam dalam kekosongan yang kita isi dengan kekosongan.

Aku pernah dengar cerita, orang mengisi waktu, mencari arti.


Gillette and Gilittey

So I went to the convenient store and asked for a blue Gillette, and got this instead. No, I don’t care about fake versus original. If anybody can get filthy rich by selling shits, they can pay me to change my faith. The problem is, this thing was painful to use.

So, where am I going with this? Nowhere.

rather similar

rather similar

Left: Gilittey, right: Gillette

Left: Gilittey, right: Gillette

The Gilittey is on the left. Look at the blades, those are painful.

The Gilittey is on the left. Look at the blades, those are painful.

The packagings for both were similar, I won't blame the teller.

The packagings for both were similar, I won’t blame the teller.

which one is which?

which one is which?

same typeface

same typeface

Random Sightings

By the sea, there was a green pasture of joy, and the hills that separated the grass from the mighty dark water, stood tall to boast the proof of endurance to anyone who are drawn to gaze upon its magnificence. On top of it, under the grim cloud and the proud blue sky, the children were running with joy and the care of the most inconsiderate of gods. Mothers were watching while spreading the freshly washed tunic under the constant promise of the sun. Fathers were mending their nets, collecting woods and laughing among other trades.

Yonder, slightly beyond the caress of the trees, I saw a man, bare chested, with a muddy colored fabric covering his waist down to his feet, and a double edged sword hovering, pointing towards his back. He seemed to be young but at the same time old. He seemed to be tired, but when I looked closer, I could see the heaving movement of energy within his chest. He seemed to be skinny and small at first, but when I looked on, I could sense an utter and complete intimidation, although somehow I knew, he won’t harm me. I couldn’t really recall the hair though, I think it’s of the color of the ashes. I dare say that it was constantly changing, but it might as well just the wind.

It was an unnatural sight by any means, I didn’t understand what I see. When I saw absentmindedness registered upon the enigmatic face, I made up my mind to turn around and bring this to the attention of my people. More thoughts might provide better judgment. Alas, before I could shout a word, a young boy, sprang out of the man, literally, like a wild deer came out of a thick fog. Burnt straight hair, burnt red skin, with a fiery brown eyes, and the sweet sour scent of youth, observing the proceeding beyond him and exclaimed: “I wanna play!”

It was the day when Matti, the man of a thousand souls, laughed among us. Some had said, it was the only moment he laughed. But how could I have known? For since the day he departed, all I heard were stories, of wonders and dreads, and most recently, of hopelessness.

In the Middle pt.32

It was a small place, like a center of a town in some old cowboy movies. A town which is consisted of scattered houses, standing miles away from each other, empty, with one or two bodies around them, basking under the sun, wet with sweat, grinded under the chores of life, with every movement, striving to assert their existence. I was half hoping that it was not for naught. I was half joking. I sensed sarcasm within my own thoughts. At the town center however, old wooden houses and stores gathered. I wasn’t sure if it was the remnant of what it was, or whether it was how it had always been. I heard stories of decay from people along the way, from other parts of the region. I was expecting the same pattern, augmented.

The notoriety of the places that we would visit usually reached us with every question that we had asked. It would be a lie to say that our heads weren’t filled with assumptions. We came in from a corner, with the riders, stopped right in the middle of an opening surrounded by those wooden buildings. They might as well served us on a stake to be butchered by some of those red eyed men in the coffee shops. It was a hot midday; I wasn’t feeling particularly happy about everything. We had encountered some sharks at the station and at the market in the nearby town. People with the insatiable urge to eat others. Not that it surprised or dismayed me; it’s just that it was bluntly expressed.

After multitudes of rejections, we began to lose our temper. The merchants, the government officials, workers, people, they hate questions, questions that might tickle the life as they know it. And then there was the bargain with the thugs… I swore a lot, I could’ve hurt someone. A hot day, filled with unfriendly faces, we had a uselessly lengthy argument, in front of a store, with the riders regarding their payment. A woman chimed in with her own version of wisdom, saying in the local dialect, that we were extorting the riders, and that they should be able to get more, since we were apparently there on a project. From the perspective of an ordinary Indonesian, project means money. Money means leakage. Lots and lots of it. Her voice was loud and irritating.

The crowd gathered, old men, bulky men, children, nosy women, it was infuriating. We exchanged heated words, the pressure escalated. We decided to silence them by giving them the chance to gain more by doing additional tasks for us. It was difficult to be in the middle, it was difficult to be someone who understood both perspectives while both sides were accusing each other. It was difficult to see, that in the end, we were all rats. We left the crowd. I walked to find the rendezvous point, through the clearing towards a row of food sellers, with quickened phase. Around us eyes staring. I looked straight towards their direction, murmured through my gritted teeth: “come and eat us, muttheads! We’re here for the ripples on your sullied river of gold.”

about the administration and self preservation.

Yesterday, May 8, 2013, the rain poured down on to the entirety of the city where I live in. It was a whole day affair, and unlike fortunes, it affects each and every one of city dwellers, big and small.


In such circumstance, automatically, the thought of flood… well, flood in. And yesterday it was quite extraordinary. When I went home from work, I saw that some parts of the roads that weren’t really prone to flood – which is a rarity by itself – were flooded. The condition of the roads, which under day light would look like the remnants of artillery bombardment, made the situation even more dire for commuters.


But there’s just no slot anymore to talk about the remnants of the artillery bombardment. And I sincerely doubt that there is any slot left at the back of our mind to talk about the flood. Nevertheless, in the spirit of venting, we have to vomit sometimes.


I vaguely recall that I talked to some people, who are regular travelers, about Jakarta and how Pontianak has become, more or less, similar to it. Indeed, but if Jakarta is like a print-job produced by a lousy printer, Pontianak is more like the copy of that print-job produced by a lousy refurbished copier machine.


I also asked them, what will the town’s interior look like in, say, 5 years or a decade to come. The general answer is, it will get worse. These people that I casually questioned are students, professionals, and business owners. None of them were civil servants, it’s quite interesting to see the dynamic in the level of confidence about the town’s future.


The town’s future… such a farfetched pile of stupendous words.


One aspect of my work requires me to accompany researchers (yes, those researchers are foreigners, just to amplify the point) to go to various governments offices and see some people there, people that I just couldn’t care less about. Now, I may have some strong opinion about certain issues around me, but when I’m working, I dress like one of them to enhance the sense of neutrality that we should represent.


It helped them to talk cordially, knowing that I’ll laugh together with them, not at them.


The results, were always eye openers.


Sometimes it is easy to pinpoint corruption as the backbone of the problems and ignorance we have around us, sometimes it is as jumbled up as the complications of ignorance, stupidity, culture, lack of facilities and knowledge, interests, lack of archiving, suspicions, twisted logic on the perception about what should be placed as priorities, and other spices that add to the toxic nature of the concoction that we have been drinking to drunk ourselves.


And we have been sleeping soundly with the occasional heavy cases of hangover. If ever we are sober, we would spend the time spitting on each other’s face.


After some tour to the offices and the governments installations, I only have this to say, to count on the administration to fix problems for us is like talking to an atheist about revelation, the act itself is utterly laughable.


It is only us now, alone, preserving ourselves, be it by ways of virtue or vice.

blackenedgreen, the samples…

I was distributing copies of handouts to a bunch of college students, then one of them suddenly retorted “but sir, it’s not good to use so many papers, it’s not good for our rain forest, you are promoting such bad attitude doing this.”


Have you seen the smog lately? I bet you have, but do you pay any attention to this phenomenon? I honestly doubt it. I’m not trying to insinuate that you are such an ignorant person, it’s just, like most of us, life takes the better of our mind away form the things that might be substantially important to us towards the things that we assume to be substantially important.

Money is important, but it can’t buy clean air, please do correct me if I’m wrong…..

OK, let me correct myself, we can buy cars with spacious and comfortable cabin, so we don’t have to breathe any filth when we are commuting. We can isolate every air intakes in and around our house, install air purifiers and air conditioners, and do everything through the interweb. And when everything is bad enough, we can take a hike on that airplane to some places more “humane.”

James Carville wasn’t kidding when he coined the phrase “the economy, stupid.” Well, he might have, but everything we do today is based on one single motif: the economy. And when we talk about economy, there’s no telling where’s the limit might be, I don’t think the sky is even enough.

So, no, I don’t think I am promoting anything. See those humongous billboards out there? Motorcycle’s producers are competing for breakthroughs in sales statistics. Just take your papers and read.

we’re screwed.

First of all, I’d like to re-convey the dubious fact that is sometimes condemned as heresy: we have been bred by none other than our fellow human being to be cultivated for our heart and soul, and the most intriguing part of it is that we have to pay with our heart and soul (which, in essence, belongs to them anyway) for every “effort” that they have done (“done” is the term in the contract, that is sometimes refer to the condition of pre-intention, if they care) to us.

Well, that certainly was a mouthful for such meaningless gibberish.

But here’s the simple list to bug the heart of anybody that is foolish enough to be sensitive:

– healthcare.

– medicine (obviously)

– domination of foodstuff and who to decide what to plant, to breed and the fact that no, dear farmers, you are not allowed to invent potion, if you do, we’ll take that from you thank you very much, file for patents for the entire part of the trash you’ve made, and sue your ass off the earth.

– emancipation of… humanity, go ahead slit my throat feminist, but ignorance is not exclusively yours to claim. We have so many movements these days, ranging from pro-Bono airheads to animal lovers, labor unions to share holder unions. The fact is, we hate each other, and we produced reactions. Each claimed to be civilized.

– thugs in high places feeling high and mighty, unchecked… while they are toying with toys, and the collateral damage that would sub-include, guess who: us.

– decadence wrapped in plastic case, with intricate designs on the package, backed by sophisticated marketing management, spans over the entire continents… and oceans while we’re at it.

– and some other things that I just can’t recall…

Nevermind, just remember that ignorance is bliss, so that you can sleep tonight, because your freedom only worth so much as your dependance toward the mercy of those bittersweet candies…

merindukan purnama

telah habis kuasa kata

telah terjual semua kepada fana

dalam tiap tarikan nafas

kedalam setiap jiwa

kau suntikkan putus asa

agar bisa kau jual semua

apa yang kau katakan sebagai air surga

yang kau kuras dari sumur air mata

di belakang rumah kita…

dan kau mampuskan puisi

kau hapuskan jati diri

kau cemarkan segala yang sejati

kau tidak perduli

kita semua akan celaka

lebih celaka daripada mati


seorang pria berdiri

ditengah tanah tanpa manusia

melihat puisi dijual dalam bungkusan plastik

dan para mayat mengeruk pasir

membuang putih

dan menggantung bulan baru di langit yang telah mati.


Apa padanan kata “fetish” dalam bahasa Indonesia? Entahlah, tapi dalam tradisi bahasa yang lebih sering membawanya, kata itu bisa mempunyai berbagai arti. Jangan tanya saya, jika saat ini anda sedang membaca tulisan ini, anda pasti sedang terkoneksi ke internet, dan dengan mudahnya anda bisa mengakses wikipedia… kecuali jika anda termasuk orang yang percaya bahwa kata “internet” dan kata “facebook” adalah sebuah sinonim.

Jika anda sudah mengetahui arti kata tersebut, maka: bukan, kita tidak menggunakan arti yang terkait dengan seksualitas. Walaupun sebenarnya makna tersebut tidak terpisahkan.

Suatu saat disebuah acara, dimana duka menjadi sajian utama, seseorang menghampiri saya dan mengatakan “mas, nanti pas dia nangis tolong di ‘close up’ ya…”

Frase tersebut tidak hanya muncul sekali, tapi berulang kali dan dalam acara yang berbeda-beda… setelah itu saya sempat berpikir sejenak: untuk apa? Toh foto-foto ini hanya akan menjadi sampah digital, disalin kesana-kesini antar gadget, paling bagus nyangkut di facebook.

Waktu saya melatih diri dalam hal pendokumentasian… dulu… melihat bapak-bapak ngamuk, ibu-ibu histeris dan para mahasiswa menjerit nggak jelas di jalanan, menangkap emosi memang agak mengasyikkan, adrenalin naik, bahkan sensasinya mungkin sedikit seperti onani, berebutan dengan nyamuk-nyamuk lainnya, berusaha menyikut untuk posisi terbaik, supaya bisa menangkap emosi-emosi tersebut secara frontal: TEPAT DI DEPAN MUKA.

Dan itu terjadi dimana-mana, lihat saja saluran TV nasional ketika ada liputan tragedi. Melirik ke koran, mungkin para pimpinan redaksi dan editor hanyalah versi lain dari J. Jonah Jameson (google saja, gampang kok).

Media, menurut saya hanyalah salah satu alat untuk mencapai kepuasan. Ada berbagai macam kepuasan, dan salah satunya adalah kepuasan kita saat melihat penderitaan orang. Hal yang pasti akan kita sangkal, tapi rasa senang itu ada di dalam, memberi rasa hangat yang manis bagi ego kita, yang kemudian kita lapisi dengan kata “simpati”…

Jika kita langsung melompat pada kata “hipokrit” mungkin tidak tepat, “alamiah” mungkin lebih tepat, lagipula perihal hipokrit itu sendiri adalah perihal yang alamiah.

Jadi, untuk apa? Untuk memuaskan diri kita.

Untuk apa saya melakukannya? Untuk memuaskan mereka yang punya uang yang cukup untuk memaksa saya melakukannya meskipun asam lambung sudah naik sampai ke ubun-ubun.



all I lust is a simple beauty.

There with the lonesome afternoon

beyond the fence

by the river.

I met you.

And the bucket of water that you placed down on the longing grasses.

The way you put your hair back

wiping the sweet dew on your neck.

With the sunburned hand

and the promise of complete solace.


Yearning for air

the seagull came from far sea

kissed the rocks of the mountains

fell like a naked turkey

to surrender.

Standing here counting the last of my breaths

I stare at you

the brilliant glance from those clear eyes.


Lifted the bucket and turned away

to walk along the path

shaded by trees of untold memories


to where I can’t see you

and beyond

while lights and shadows were dancing along

stardust you’ve left behind…