I’ve officially found the perfect name for my future daughter:

Kali.

Oh well, if  having a daughter seems like forever in the future, it’s at least so perfect for my future tattoo. Still not sure though which one I’ll get first, a tattoo or a baby.

First of all, ‘kali’ in my native tongue, Javanese, and in Indonesian means river. Poetic enough although you won’t ever find any person named Kali here because the parents won’t let people think their kid is full of shit and rubbish like all Indonesian rivers. And that’s not what I mean either. My ‘kali’ refers to Her Highness Goddess Kali.

A demons killer and blood drinker, how cool does that sound?

I was so impressed by her story helping Durga in a battle against demons where there was a demon that was almost impossible to kill as he multiplied himself through every drop of his blood that touched the ground. But she savagely murdered the demon(s) and drank their blood to prevent any blood from touching the ground. She was unstoppable and it was Shiva who calmed her down by letting her step on his body. What a goddess.

It always feels good to remember her story but life has all the distractions to make me forget it. That’s why I think a daughter’s name (or a tattoo) would be a good remembrance and hope.

 

 

 

 

 

Tentang ‘O’

Libur lebaran lalu saya gagal memenuhi sebuah tantangan membaca novel. Sedikit ironis karena novel yang disodorkan adalah karya penulis favorit saya yang belakangan hits sekali membuat saya ‘cemburu’ dan selalu berpikiran “Tahu apa kalian tentang Eka Kurniawan? Saya sudah baca Cantik Itu Luka sejak covernya masih alay” setiap kali saya lihat orang baca tulisan Mas Eka.  Maafkan saya, Mas Eka dan para pembaca karya beliau.

O, sangat tidak asing walaupun saya belum pernah baca. Setiap kali ke toko buku beberapa bulan terakhir saya tidak pernah tidak mengambil buku ini, membaca sinopsis dan testimoni di sampul belakang, menimang-nimang, dan akhirnya meletakkannya kembali. Entah sudah berapa kali. Ketika tiba-tiba kakak menantang untuk menyelesaikan O dalam satu minggu yang padat dengan agenda lebaran, saya langsung mengiyakan. Ini kesempatan bagi saya untuk memutuskan apakah O layak dibeli.

Sama seperti ketika membaca novel-novel Mas Eka yang lain, tiga-empat halaman pertama saya lewati tanpa menguap. Saya menikmati alur yang amburadul, terpingkal-pingkal dengan cerita Armo Gundul, seekor monyet legenda yang berhasil menjadi manusia dan membantu membangun peradaban, kemudian tiba-tiba serius menyimak cerita si revolver yang sedih telah membunuh seorang wanita dan janinnya. Semua hal terasa tidak nyambung tapi saya terlanjur punya kepercayaan bahwa Mas Eka sudah mempersiapkan jembatan penghubung di halaman-halaman berikutnya dengan dialog yang brilian. Saya lanjut baca hingga sampailah saya di bagian cerita di mana O dengan tabah menerima siksaan majikannya. Pandangan saya mendadak kabur karena air mata. Hancur hati saya membayangkan seekor monyet kecil yang setia bekerja untuk tuannya alih-alih disayang sebagai imbal balik dia masih harus merelakan pisang jatah makannya direbut si majikan belum lagi cambukkan tiga helai lidi jika si majikan sedang kesal apapun sebabnya. Sulit untuk tidak membayangkan ini terjadi di luar fiksi. Saya percaya Mas Eka pasti terinspirasi dari bagaimana kebanyakan pawang topeng monyet keliling memperlakukan monyet-monyet mereka. Belum selesai saya menghapus air mata, saya sudah harus menelan tragedi lain. Cerita Kirik, si anjing kecil, tentang ibunya dan saudara-saudaranya yang habis dimakan majikannya membuat saya memutuskan untuk berhenti membaca. Saya tidak atau belum punya cukup nyali untuk melanjutkan. Segala macam tragedi manusia yang pernah saya baca di novel-novel hanya membuat saya murung, kadang malah tersenyum sinis. Tapi ketika cerita kemalangan itu menimpa binatang, hati saya mendadak lembek.

Di sisi lain saya lega karena Mas Eka masih tetap konsisten dengan kegelapan temanya. Pada akhirnya saya punya alasan untuk tidak meletakkan O kembali ke rak buku pada kunjungan berikutnya ke toko buku. Saya pasti beli meskipun belum tahu kapan saya merasa berani membacanya lagi.

Mas Eka, terima kasih sudah sukses membuat saya berkaca-kaca. Kamu jahat!

I woke up crying

like a baby. I’m sure I was crying in my sleep ’cause as soon as I opened my eyes tears streamed. But at the same time I was eternally grateful realizing that the horror was just a dream.

I dreamed my father died. It felt so real even though I can’t really recall every single detail. All I remember is that I was on the phone with my brother and he told me that dad had died. I didn’t ask why but in the dream I seemed to understand the reason of his death. Then suddenly I entered a room, a large room. It looked like an ER and I saw 5 or 6 people dying and the nurses were busy helping them. I walked past them to a separated room and from the window I saw my dad’s body. His left leg was amputated and somebody had attached a hand onto it (Not sure if it was his hand). WTF! It was weird, scary and heartbreaking. I sobbed uncontrollably until I woke up and found my eyes wet.  I couldn’t sleep again until morning thinking of what it might mean. As a Javanese somehow it’s hard to avoid superstitious beliefs. LOL. From what I heard such dream is a good sign. But who knows?

I’m just planning to be home again this weekend.

THE SADDENING PURE COMEDY

These months have been strange as I don’t feel like listening to music anymore. I’m not sure what I’m gonna be singing at karaoke anymore. Sounds depressing, huh? No, but seriously this is strange. I used to stay updated with the new releases, memorize some songs and leave it behind when too many people sing them.  Although my taste of music isn’t that great, this time I feel that I can’t enjoy the latest musics in the business.

And then the savior comes out of the blue. Kurt sent me an album of Father John Misty “Pure Comedy” and as a teaser he shared the youtube video of a song from the album with the same title

I immediately checked it. With its long lyric, it’s quite uneasy listening. The video added more depression with the demonic doodles depicting disgusting social phenomena more than what I’ve realized. And the Trump scenes just made it worse.

And they get terribly upset
When you question their sacred texts

Those lines made me feel different. It reminded me of something. And I couldn’t help weeping.

to be continued