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Merdeka midnight

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Sheila Santharamohana was in a reflective and somewhat despondent mood this Merdeka; so she wrote a poem.

Photograph: malaysiandigest.com
Photograph: malaysiandigest.com

Merdeka midnight

Look up there. (See me pointing?)
Follow that bottle rocket wailing upwards
The trajectory of a constipated end
to an imperfect, insignificant life.
A weary flare in the damp sky.
See how it leaves a trail of nought
but an invisible stream?

Across there.
Flickering behind a wafting curtain
(don’t look too close or you’ll be blinded)
Hypnotic technicolour hues hawking
Versions of high-definition soulless ‘solidarity’
and pixels of manufactured allegiance
to God, Race and Country
Love me at 55-inch wide and an inch thick.
Or else.
Do you?

You saw that too.
Two heads this time. Helmetless, buffeted mullets
Attached to trunks and pubescent limbs
Their machines sputtering the sum of their freedom
Clinging on, they career down the ribbon road
to Nowhere.
Leaving a trail of lingering laughter
To mock at bedroom windows
of the cautious and catatonic.
A poignant reminder of squandered youth
to sour the cynic. (I’m talking about us.)

You hung a flag?
It has snagged somewhat sorrily
All its faded glory flustered
by a threaded corner caught
Upon a withered thorn of a bitch branch
Unravelling with each tug of breeze
As the Sun and Rain bakes its spirit into
a pale reflection of what once was
a riot of vibrant dreams. You remember how it was?
Can you?

31 August 2013

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