Hic Sunt Dracones

the smylere with the knyf under the cloke

Posts Tagged ‘poem

Readings@Seksan: 5th Anniversary

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Belated entry of the event last Saturday on 30th January 2010 — because I got down with a fever on that day, and procrastinating ever since.

A good crowd of readers that day: Elaine Foster, Jo Kukathas, O Thiam Chin, Kam Raslan, Bernice Chauly and Rahmat Haron.

Sharon Bakar reciting the ‘piglet’ poem about the piglet canvas, which used to be the backdrop of Readings.

Elaine Foster stomping with poetry slam — Revolution Will Not Be Televised.

Jo Kukathas and Bernice Chauly narrating a chronicle of yesteryear life in Malaya.

O Thiam Chin reading a piece from his book — Never Been Better.

Kam Raslan amused us with a piece of his sequel to Confessions of an Old Boy: The Dato’ Hamid Adventures — of perfume and the lingering nostalgia with every waft of bergamot, citrus and musk.

Rahmat Haron — mat bunga dari selambak hapak, sampah seni — with his ‘non-rebel’ art form of soundscape and ‘critical’ poetry.

And lastly, Umapagan Ampikaipakan announced BFM 89.9 Book Club akin to Oprah’s Book Club. First book to discuss: Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird.

I’ll reupload Rahmat Haron’s Keranamu Malaysia youtube video — the audio is out of sync due to codec issue. This old laptop can’t render 1080p, less it crash. Even after resizing it into 720p and 360p.

Happy 5th anniversary Readings. I enjoy the cake, the ‘giant’ curry puff and the jovial atmosphere. Cheers!

The Aerie, the Abyss and the Feisty Fräulein of Elitist and Populist

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Came across two poem by Lord Alfred Tennyson today — a majestic creature that roams the heaven and the mythological cephalopod of the pelagic Cthulhu’s R’lyeh.

Inspiring, at least in the early dazed state after the holiday slumber.

Tony Buzan recites THE EAGLE by Alfred, Lord Tennyson (practices Aikido, plays chess, mind maps the poem and haiku) — Motivating #BFMradio

Learning to Learn RT @BFMradio: Tony Buzan next on BFM 89.9 just after the 10am news!

The Eagle: A Fragment

He clasps the crag with hooked hands;
Close to the sun in lonely lands,
Ring’d with the azure world, he stands.

The wrinkled sea beneath him crawls;
He watches from his mountain walls,
And like a thunderbolt he falls.

— Alfred Tennyson (1809–1892), British poet. First published in 1851.

Feeling high and low, in the midst of insomniac stupor — the Cthulhu-like creature sleep: That is not dead which can eternal lie, and with strange aeons even death may die.

The Kraken

Below the thunders of the upper deep;
Far, far beneath in the abysmal sea,
His ancient, dreamless, uninvaded sleep
The Kraken sleepeth.

— Alfred Tennyson (1809–1892), British poet. Poems, Chiefly Lyrical “The Kraken”.


Well, hello there Miss M.

How’s Siem Reap — more importantly how’s life?

That little bird of Re-Tweet sure foul the fowl innit? Ah, run along now — my favourite fräulein of joie de vivre — I’m no where near your sanctum sanctorum (of good eat, good id and good sleep — ah, sleep).

Looking cute, au naturel — the hair, that is.


Written by cthulhu

December 30, 2009 at 3:11 pm

Twas Jabberwocky

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‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.

“Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
The frumious Bandersnatch!”

Written by cthulhu

November 1, 2009 at 10:45 pm

The Cake Is a Lie

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The Cake Is a Lie

If you ever came across the Portal™ game inside The Orange Box, you’ll notice there’s a lot of reference to cake and a poetry reference to both Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Emily Dickinson — which in fact is a parody.

As I’m still in the spirit of “doing the Hudson”re-Hudson or de-Hudson. Here’s a bite in the patois cake.


Si Malaikat Maut dan Kuntuman Bunga
by Cthulhu

Bukan dengan kejam, lagi amarah,
Si malaikat maut datang pada hari itu;
Tapi bagaikan malaikat dari syurga ke muka bumi,
Memetik bunga jauh ke hati.

Note: It’s hard to differentiate between Angel of Death and Archangel in malay term. I used “memetik bunga jauh ke hati” since it has the symbolism of affection, instead of “jauh lari”.

The Reaper and the Flowers
parodied in Portal™

Not in cruelty
Not in wrath
The REAPER came today
An ANGEL visited
this gray path
And took the cube away.

The Reaper and the Flowers
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

O, not in cruelty, not in wrath,
The Reaper came that day;
‘T was an angel visited the green earth,
And took the flowers away.


Kerana saya tidak dapat menahan Malaikat Maut
by Cthulhu

Kerana saya tidak dapat menahan Malaikat Maut —
Dia dengan baik hati berhenti untuk saya —
Hanya kami berdua di dalam Kereta Kuda —
Dan keabadian.

Note: “Keabadian” instead of “kebaqaan”, the former is a proper noun for us mortal, while the latter for divinity. “Kereta Kuda”? Hahaha.

Because I could not stop for Death
parodied in Portal™

Because I could not stop for Death
He kindly stopped for me
The cube had food and maybe ammo
And immortality

Because I could not stop for Death
by Emily Dickinson

Because I could not stop for Death —
He kindly stopped for me —
The Carriage held but just Ourselves —
And Immortality.

Morbid, no?

By the by, I prefer this version of re-Hudson Cake (by Roger McGough):

Kek Coklat
by Rem

aku mahu satu hayat
engkau mahu satu lagi
sama-sama kita tak dapat
kita pun saling berkongsi diri.

Compared with this:

Kek Coklat
by Natasha Hudson

Saya mahu satu kehidupan,
Kamu mahu sesuatu yang lain,
Kita tidak dapat makan kek coklat,
Jadi kita makan sesama diri.

by Roger McGough

i wanted one life
you wanted another
we couldn’t have our cake
so we ate each other.

I think I’m having a sugar crash.


Quotable Portal™:

  • “Quit now and – CAKE – will be served immediately.”
  • Cake, and grief counseling will be available at the conclusion of the test. Thank you for helping us help you help us all.”
  • “The Enrichment Center is required to remind you that you will be baked, and then there will be cake.” (subtitles say: “The Enrichment Center is required to remind you that you will be baked [garbled] cake.”)
  • “OK, the test is over now. You win! Go back to the recovery annex for your cake!”
  • “Uh oh. Somebody cut the cake. I told them to wait for you, but they cut it anyway. There is still some left, though, if you hurry back.”
  • “I’m not kidding now. Turn back or I WILL kill you… I’m going to kill you, and all the cake is gone, you don’t even care, do you?”
  • “Who’s going to make the cake when I’m gone? You?
  • Cake Sphere: “One 18.25 ounce package chocolate cake mix. One can prepared coconut pecan frosting. Three slash four cup vegetable oil. Four large eggs. One cup semi-sweet chocolate chips. Three slash four cups butter or margarine. One and two third cups granulated sugar. Two cups all purpose flour. Don’t forget garnishes such as: Fish shaped crackers. Fish shaped candies. Fish shaped solid waste. Fish shaped dirt. Fish shaped ethyl benzene. Pull and peel licorice. Fish shaped volatile organic compounds and sediment shaped sediment. Candy coated peanut butter pieces. Shaped like fish. One cup lemon juice. Alpha resins. Unsaturated polyester resins. Fiberglass surface resins. And volatile malted milk impoundments. Nine large egg yolks. Twelve medium geosynthetic membranes. One cup granulated sugar. An entry called ‘how to kill someone with your bare hands.’ Two cups rhubarb, sliced. Two slash three cups granulated rhubarb. One tablespoon all-purpose rhubarb. One teaspoon grated orange rhubarb. Three tablespoons rhubarb, on fire. One large rhubarb. One cross borehole electro-magnetic imaging rhubarb. Two tablespoons rhubarb juice. Adjustable aluminum head positioner. Slaughter electric needle injector. Cordless electric needle injector. Injector needle driver. Injector needle gun. Cranial caps. And it contains proven preservatives, deep penetration agents, and gas and odor control chemicals. That will deodorize and preserve putrid tissue.”
  • “The cake is a lie. The cake is a lie. The cake is a lie. The cake is a lie.”
  • “The weighted companion cube DOES speak. Superstition, perceiving inanimate objects as alive, and hallucinations. I’m not hallucinating. You are. The companion cube would never desert me. Dessert. So long… Cake. Ha ha, Cake. A lie. The companion cube would never lie to me. NEVER.”


Portal™ – End Game:

Portal™ – Credits Song, Jonathan Coulton – “Still Alive”:

She Takes the Cake

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Shahrin (or should I say Dato’ Shahrin), your late dad (Ranhill Group Deputy Chief Executive Datuk Zahari) left one memorable yet cliché idiom as me and Rashid (now doing Ph.D in France) had an evening conversation while the rest of your family and friends seemed more interested with the Kelantanese dikir barat next room. This was in 2002, in Newcastle upon Tyne, UK. While you’re still studying in Northumbria University. And your age seem more youthful than the media stated 31 years old — since it would be ridiculous for a 20-ish UMNO lad to get a Dato’, innit?

“Jack of all trades, master of none”.

He said but he left out “though ofttimes better than master of one.” The latter seem to ring true with your wedded thespian. She seems to be the cultured type. A professional model, an aspiring actress and sadly a shady poet — suspected with plagiarism.

Jannah Raffali incites a crusade against the literature infidelity. Playing semantics with her name: Natasha McGough Hudson, Natasha Similar Hudson and Natasha Overboard Hudson. And three is enough: Fool Us Thrice, Shame On the Lies.

Sharon Bakar’s entry appears to be a hot bed for both detractor and (devil) advocate.

Sufian Abas (a.k.a. Irman Noor) would say anything to be the literati dawg:

Sufian said…

There might not be a concept of copyright, but surely by attributing the name of the writer to the work he/she produces is somewhat similar?

I mean, if authorship is not important, why not write as anon, then?

Ok, even if we assume that authorship is perhaps for patronage, wenches, ale or things that go bump in the night.

What if, say, for instance, I were to write an epic poem in terza rima about my alleged journey from hell to purgatory to heaven and say that it’s all me. Is that plagiarism?

And isn’t it a bit of a stretch for people now who proudly read the work of Shakespeare yet want Ms Hudson’s work to be taken off the shelf on account of plagiarism?

January 17, 2008 12:02 AM

And the retort:

Anonymous said…

Oh, dear. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing when it leads one to equate Natasha Hudson with Shakespeare and Dante Alighieri.

Yes, Shakespeare and Dante “plagiarised” in the sense that all creative artists at the time did — and in fact many of them *did* do so anonymously, because the concepts of the “author” and of “originality” were all but non-existent then. Poets, musicians, visual artists — they all not only consciously based their work on their predecessors’ work (often as homage), but also freely dipped into the communal font of stories/musical gestures/artistic subjects. Shakespeare and Chaucer and Dante and Milton weren’t inventing plots of their own, because that is not what writers did at the time. And they may even have reused exact phrasing here and there, but the reason we remember them and not all their contemporaries who were all also freely “plagiarising” each other is that they did it better — they took what was considered to be their raw material and made it something *better,* not patently worse.

If someone wants to say the same about Ms. Hudson (i.e. that her “poems” are better than the originals), they should certainly feel free to do so, and then I can laugh at them from this safe and fortunate distance.

In any case, Ms. Hudson’s superiority/inferiority to her sources is somewhat irrelevant, because in this day and age we *do* have the notions of authorship and originality and copyright and so on and so forth. To accuse Shakespeare and Dante of plagiarism is not analogous to the US lecturing people on human rights, however much satisfaction it might give one to throw in their cause-of-the-day into this argument — it’s more like accusing cavemen of adultery.

— Preeta

January 17, 2008 12:55 AM

And the usual oh-so witty riposte commenced. It’s getting weary after a while.

I’m off to Liyana Yusof’s Vox as she “do the Hudson”. It’s visceral and carnal as it sound with a hint of Sapphism (maybe). Ah, you’re so cute with the mistranslation *bites*.

What’s the furore ado?

Take a look at Natasha Hudson’s Puisi Indah Sri Pari-Pari:


Kek Coklat
by Natasha Hudson

Saya mahu satu kehidupan,
Kamu mahu sesuatu yang lain,
Kita tidak dapat makan kek coklat,
Jadi kita makan sesama diri.

by Roger McGough

i wanted one life
you wanted another
we couldn’t have our cake
so we ate each other.


Si Kura-Kura Kecil
by Natasha Hudson

Ada seekor kura-kura kecil
tinggal di dalam kotak
berenang di tepi tasik
memanjat di atas batu

dia cuba menggigit nyamuk
dia cuba mengigit kutu
dia cuba menggigit berudu
dia cuba menggigit aku

dia berjaya menangkap nyamuk
dia berjaya menangkap kutu
dia berjaya menangkap berudu
tetapi dia tidak berjaya menangkap aku

The Little Turtle
by Vachel Lindsay

There was a little turtle.
He lived in a box.
He swam in a puddle.
He climbed on the rocks.

He snapped at a mosquito.
He snapped at a flea.
He snapped at a minnow.
And he snapped at me.

He caught the mosquito.
He caught the flea.
He caught the minnow.
But he didn’t catch me.


Mentega kuning, jelly ungu, jam merah, roti hitam
by Natasha Hudson

Mentega kuning, jelly ungu, jam merah, roti hitam
ratakan tebal
katakan cepat

ratakan tebal
katakan cepat

sekarang ulang
sambil kamu makan

sekarang ulang
sambil kamu makan

janganlah bercakap
bila mulut kamu penuh

Things We Like to Eat
by Mary Ann Hoberman

Yellow butter, purple jelly, red jam, black bread.
Spread it thick,
Say it quick.

Yellow butter, purple jelly, red jam, black bread
Spread it thicker,
Say it quicker.

Yellow butter, purple jelly, red jam, black bread
Now repeat it,
While you eat it.

Yellow butter, purple jelly, red jam, black bread
Don’t talk
With your mouth full!



So what style do the illustration on her book like?

A Tim Burton imitation of Edward Gorey in The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories. Shel Silverstein?

From the image caption, it does look like Roald Dahl favourite illustrator: Quentin Blake.

“I was so taken in by Tim Burton’s books and was thinking that it would be nice to have my book feature illustrations too. So I decided to have illustrations for my Malay book Puisi Indah Si Pari-Pari, which has 20 poems in it.”

[Source: The Star – Nice work, Natasha]

I bet you do.