For A Bun of Bread

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Do wake up early before the sunrise

Get yourself ready to school

Do study hard everyday and do not you be lazy

Because only with all of this

One day you will earn a bun of bread in your hand

And so my mum advised me.

Later as I grow up, I got a decent job after spending many years at school and college.

Mum said ‘see, you did earn your one bun of bread now’.

I smiled briefly but then inside me, I realized that I am longing for another bun of bread. Perhaps the one that I have not found yet.

VZ

Dili, 16/1/2018

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Ginger Tea

 

 

ginger-tea

My love is like a ginger tea

Though I have taken the ginger out

Its taste remains

and I felt so hard to spill it out

Though I could

Because it is not the will of the tea to be mixed with ginger

Thus, even though I do no like it

I have to sip it till the last drop.

VZ,

Dili, 15/1/2018

 

Christmas and New Year are Never Easy Here

It’s December and it is Cristmas! Yeah, of course. December and Christmas are always understood as one package. At least that is what we have been understood and living with since my childhood.

Starting from November, Christmas songs played everywhere throughout the territory. From the twelve munipalities to Dili, the capital city of Timor-Leste. Various genre of Christmas songs are played at the shops, at the houses, in the Taxis, buses and in the ‘microlet’ (other sort of common public transportation) and also in the radios like a public reminder.

Christmas ornaments are everywhere decorating each houses, each ‘bairros’ (neighbourhood) and each corner of the city with glittering lamps and lights around the artificial Christmas trees. Shops open Christmas sale with discounts, grocery stores offering Christmas package displayed gracefully at the entrance of the shop. Local vendors open temporary street sale with many people crowding around looking for new clothes and stuff to buy in cheap price for Christmas and New Year. All those elements have made Christmas and New year materialsm spirit dominated the whole month and the mind of people to buy things and have fun. But this is not the real meaning of Christmas for me although I love to have new stuff but I am realistic enough on the ratio between the money in my pocket and the prices of things I desired for. The ratio is 1 by 5 and it’s not enough. Forget it! Who cares about me not wearing a new clothes or buy new stuff? 

People say Christmas is the time to reunite with families and friends. And yes, all I want for Christmas is to be with my family. They live faraway from Dili city and it took me eight hours trip to reach the municipality where they live.

However, going there from Dili during Christmas and New-year week is really a struggle. This is the peak of busy week for buses to load passengers and seats are limited as they are mostly reserved to the loyal subscribing passengers. In normal days, buses will try to catch the passenger but in Christmas and New Year week, the passengers have to catch for buses. Who ran faster, will get the seat easier. Who came late, will have to stand along the way. Don’t ask how does it feel to stand in the bus along the long way home for eight hours. The roads are bumpy and curvy and it makes us shaking inside the bus everytime it takes a road turn. Not to mention, the exhausted driver who play loud music like discotic atmosphere to keep his sleepy eyes up, other passengers who smokes freely, or some other passengers who throw out from the window because of the car sick. In some cases, that exhausted driver may get a bit collapseD and causes the whole bus to be in a big trouble. A really ‘big trouble’ that may end your life or left you in bad injury because of road accident.

Christmas and New year are never easy here for those who have to return to their munipalities from Dili. Somehow, no matter how hard the trip is, people keep going  to municipalities to see their family. It’s a worth thing to go through, though. Because today we may still be  together, but tomorrow, who knows?

VZ, Dili, 23 December 2017

 

Last Year’s Christmas Hut

This year, the Christmas hut in our village is left undo

In fact, last year, it was the most beautiful Christmas hut in our village made by our local youth

There was blinking lamps light the every night

Picture of Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus with shepherds and their lambs and the three kings were there

Every night, all the youth of the village would came ro gather and hangout here

Some will brought their mp3 player and play all kind of Christmas songs

The village became live becausebof that Christmas hut

This year, those local youth who used to do the hut are gone 

Some go to Dili, the capital city

Some went abroad, to Korea, england, Ireland, to find job

This year, there is no more Christmas hut in our village.

Obrato, Manatuto Municipality

Dec 23, 2017

Merry Christmas

O come ye, o come ye

Be joyful and let us merry

Christ has born

As a poor fellow

Is it Christ who has born or we ourselves remind our birth in an annual scene?

We are all born as a poor, naked and no name

But everyone still merry for us or not at all

Even so, let us be merry and joyful

Because we have born to live

O come ye, o come y

Be joyful and let us be merry

Baucau, December 24, 2017

A CONCERT OF POP MUSIC AT THE HEART OF THE CITY

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What do you see during the concert of pop music at heart of the city?

 

Is it the setting of the stage where the blinking lights are all around?

 

Is it the unstoppable speech of the host?

 

The native and foreign singers who sing with their beautiful voices?

 

The dancers who shake themselves in an amazing style?

 

Or, the crowds who surface like ants?

 

As for me. I am not only looking at these things.

 

Eyes of mine supposed to only look straightforward, yet they draw me to see a five-year-old boy holding a bunch of five balloons and selling them around.

 

Then, a father holding her little daughter buys a pink balloon from the five-year-old boy who sold the balloon. The father gives the balloon to her daughter. The little girl laughs out excitedly.

 

After that, a woman came along and took the little girl from her father. She kissed her daughter with laughter.

 

The three of them stand right in front of me holding the pink balloon they just bought and watching the concert of pop music at the heart of the city.

 

Now, I am the one who cannot see that concert of pop music at the heart of the city.

 

VZ

Largo Lecidere, Dili, Timor-leste, August 29, 2017

Honesty is Very Expensive!

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Honesty is very expensive!
To be honest in a truth is very costly
As you walk according to the counsel of truth
You will get insults, hatred
People say ‘how arrogant you are, how stupid you are, how you do not know anything.
Step aside!’
‘Do not you be so self-righteous! Do not you be so sanctimonious!
Let the lies rule over everything to go smoothly!
Who are you to confront?

Really my brothers and sisters …
Lying is cheap and easy and keeps everything go smooth
We are sweet to each other
We call each other ‘friends’
But who wants to punish his heart to death?
Is it you or me?


My brothers and sisters…
Honesty for the truth is expensive
But it is the one who gives freedom of life!

 

VZ, March 24, 2016

An Office Colleague

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#1

When you are here, it is noisy.

When you are not here, it is tranquil and mute.

When you are not here, there is no trouble.

When you are here, there will be trouble.

Yet from the trouble you brought with you, it had made us find the solution together.

You, noisiness, trouble and solution, we never let go of each other.

#2

It is no use for you to continue to tell everyone a fiery story about the ugliness and bad deeds of someone in order to impress your listeners. Probably it does sound amazing telling those stories. However, one day, neither you shall be infallible of mistakes.

O, my friend, the human being is indeed not perfect at all.

 

VZ, Dili, 2016