Category Archives: life

POEM TRANSLATION HAIKU/SENRYU 549: WAILING IN WAR

POEM TRANSLATION HAIKU/SENRYU 549: WAILING IN WAR

wars wail out new ghosts

melancholy mood in air

the lonely aged moans

clouds bow in twilight

snow dance and drift by whirl wind

cause upheaval scene

ladle left emptied

of rice wine, stoke flame in stove

sparks red fiery sight

severed state and news

scrawl my poetry in sorrow

sadness sunk in void

Note:

This is a translated poem by Du Fu, a popular Chinese poet, sage historian, and humble civil servant in Tang Dynasty (712-770AD). I have chosen to translate in haiku/senryu, instead of line to line rendition of five characters regulated verse, in couplets per line, with total of four lines.

The original title is Facing Snow, written in 756. There was an An Lu rebellion in Chang-an and the poet was arrested and locked up in the city in winter. The couplet depicted the suffering of war and the hardship in winter, living with little money to procure wine to keep warm, and inadequate clothing. He sang his sorrow in solitude, with weariness about war, winter and poverty.

We share his sentiments about the illegitimacy of state affairs and corruptions, and our restricted freedom in MCO. We have an extended lockup. Our calamities with covid-19  pandemic is a war with disease and out of balances in living. Our “winter” will be prolonged, lasting a year or two. By the end of the upheaval, if not sick or dead, we would be bankrupt, or jobless for some. Like Du Fu, we are healed in the poetry of living., the morals of love and compassion. It is always in darkness that human beings awake with new understanding. We see the shadows of our ego and desire better in the dark, for the little light that shines shows the way out of the tunnel.

All the pictures are copied and pasted from the web, with appreciation.

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 544: COVID COVER

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 544: COVID COVER

mask to cover face

keep at distant social space

converse in cluster

Don't come close to us and wear a freakin' mask in public settings ...

more than two meters

awe to touch another soul

sealed lips to stop spread

Social Distancing Images, Stock Photos & Vectors | Shutterstock

feelings are locked up

distracted by the disease

cut off breath and cash

It's OK to feel anxious.' How a professor in China faced ...

hefty fine and jail

restrict hours in house car porch

covid still supreme

Robin Esrock's Blog

Note:

With almost 2 million cases and 126 thousand dead globally, the US blame game against WHO and China is still unabated. With such mindset, the cases and mortality will rise further in US, with 25 thousand cases and 2400 death daily. The disease rages on, irrespective of the media propaganda against others.

In Malaysia, despite the strict MCO, we have reached 5000 cases and 82 dead, and will continue to rise above 6000, and hopefully it will be a halt, if the citizens comply with the orders as advised.  We cannot deny that the restrictions are causing personal and community hardship. In this run of haiku, I am using all the common words encountered to form a poem, sharing the hardship with all. My intention is never to alarm, but to alert readers. If we comply with all the recommendations by WHO, available to all, including Trump, then there’s no problem with wearing masks, social distancing, wash and sanitize, until all hell is over.

All the cartoons are copied and pasted from the web with appreciation.

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 543: CRISIS COLLAPSE

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 543: CRISIS COLLAPSE

bury body bags

no mourners  weep at mass grave

dignity in trench

Mass graves are dug as New York City buries 24 people EVERY DAY on ...

political smear

sanitize new pathogens

stray from surveillance

Joel Valdez (valdez6315) on Pinterest

juggle jigsaw piece

prey for a scapegoat to blame

time wasted in game

Trump, Tropes, And Trots | claytoonz

cost for over smart

sacrificing human lives

for rhetoric score

Political Cartoons: Congressional inaction on mass shootings

Note:

Covid novel 19 is on an exponential and destructive path throughout the world, with almost 1.79 m cases and 110 thousand dead. US top the world in total cases (53 K) and mortality (21K), but fall far behind in crisis management, and shortage of masks, respirators and beds. Unfortunately their top medical brains and experts are not in control. This is the saddest part in American history. All 50 states are infected. By the end of March, the US reported only 70 cases of Covid 19 , but two weeks later, the figures turned alarming. Like it or not, precious time was wasted in useless rhetoric, while the virus keep multiplying and mutating, and infected in diverse ways. The man in charge is in a bull ring. The same tragedy occurs in Europe and UK (almost 80K cases, 9.9k dead).  

Coronavirus crisis reveals our need for common ground

In Malaysia, we have 4683 cases, with 76 dead; a figure high by south East Asian comparison, but has more transparencies than some neighboring nations.  Our Health Minister follows WHO guidelines and even Oxford Guides well. We have tightened our surveillance and imposes heavy fine and punishment who those who infringe the MCO (Movement Control Order).  The problems are our under 18 teenagers (some 7000), who find staying at home render them insane or bored.  In fact, if one stays at home, there is no issues with masks, safe social distance, gloves, sanitizers and wash; provided one learns to keep fit physically, emotionally and mentally. Personally we have benefited from the isolation, in terms of learning more about proper balance in community living, and we pool and share our experience in e –chats and social media. Of course, there are many who just forwarded their mails, without reading or reflecting on its validity. We have learned much from the West, and the learning will now take a reversal role.  In crisis they sacrifice their aging and disabled; we don’t, or rather, the old has the wisdom to stay alive or accept death as it comes.

The cartoons are all copied and pasted from the web, with much appreciation.

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 542: TURBULENT TIDE

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 542: TURBULENT TIDE

you are not alone

your flag-waving flown on bow

braving across seas

Batman Bows Out With Brave, Bold, Metafictional Finale | WIRED

risk turbulent tide

signals surf inside barrel

beach break at safe shore

Sea Storm Painting Paintings For Sale | Saatchi Art

devilish distress

wailing wall wake up world, with

conflict in the crack

Image result for cracks in wailing wallcartoon

ritual regrets

awe fail to grow in fixed soil

water with love tears

Gardens: plants for cracks | Life and style | The Guardian

Note:

This run of haiku/senryu is inspired by reading kimbladeswriting on Coorona, TOGETHER, posted on 3rd April, 2020. The reading prompted me to respond in the first three lines. I then expanded further, as the pandemic spread further, and I received more poetry and songs from other writers. Please visit her blog to appreciate her poem. https://kimbladeswritingblog.wordpress.com/

Often I run out of topics to write. I venture out and seek inspiration from other poets and writers.

The pictures and cartoons are copied and pasted from the web, with appreciation to owner.

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 541: STAY SANE

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 541: STAY SANE

ambiguous awe

fact and fake of hidden threat

interact in stress

Conservative Critics of Trump's Coronavirus Conduct - LA Progressive

fear and rumour spread

lies and gloom across the globe

in contagious blame

News about #coronavirus on Twitter

connected crisis

over hoarding cause shortage

of varied supply

https://www.deccanherald.com/specials/insight/young-minds ...

stay home to be sane

orderly balance living

controlled to converge

How to Stay Sane as a Cartoonist in Trumpland | The New Yorker

media mourning

world weeps for weird wide divide

trap in own tunnel

Italy's COVID-19 situation is dire but a photo of coffins is not ...

Note:

This long haiku/senryu is inspired by reading HEALTH PSYCHOLOGY, COVID -2019 OUTBREAK, by Damai Ross Garfin Et al , March 2020, via the good office of Academia. It provides a push or prompt to start. I like to turn my reading into poetry and haiku/senryu paraphrase the ideas more concretely in lesser words

There are now about 1.1 million cases, with 59 K death in Covid 19 globally. US leads the list of cases and death and will explode further in a week or two. In Malaysia, our figures go up, with 3486 cases and 57 death. There are two big clusters that we missed, one 300 group from the Church, another 40k from another religious congregations. Today we see many of our citizens return from overseas; many cross the Singapore- Johor causeway in their bikes without masks and kept safe distance. However, the more worried ones are those who are asymptomatic or with minimal symptoms, but are super spreaders. In this pandemic there is no use in catching up with the latest news and do nothing positive for own benefit.

We stay at home for a purpose, mainly not to get infected or infect another, especially own family members. We stay home to keep fit physically by disciplined exercises, not engage in over eating and alcoholism. Many household engage in panic buying; over hoard their food, masks and groceries. Even many governments and nations did that too, with respirators, gloves, masks and medications. Except in groceries and food, and coffins, industry is almost at a standstill.

Today China held a national mourning and commemorated 3322 dead, and confirmed martyrs status to 14 who gave their lives to save others. Frankly, without Wuhan strict lockdown for a month, the cases and death rate would be even higher. Nevertheless, good efforts are not always well appreciated. That is the nature of the human mind; harder to foster bond or heal misunderstanding across culture. It is currently reported that UK communication towers are vandalized due to rumours that 5G by China assists the spread of Covid D; causing the sudden surge in cases and death.The fake and fact, the rumour and gossips are so intertwined that becomes hard to straighten in the fast technology of modern media.

The psycho-social and emotional problems in the individual, family and community will gradually manifest themselves. Prolonged home stay might not improve dyad relate, but increase family violence and abuse; it might complicate physical and mental health problems in the individual. On a minor note, over eating and binging due to boredom of Stay Home may complicate medical problems.  Social distance ( from 3, to 6 feet, then 8 ft) might cause increased alienation and post-traumatic stress disorder, sleep disorder and angst. It might be the light at the end of a dark tunnel, only if we could use the free time to reflect on a wide range of issues. However, human beings have short memory span; the problem would soon be forgotten once the crisis was over.

The cartoons are all copied and pasted from the web. Thanks to all cartoonists.

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 540: REVAMP RESOURCES

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 540: REVAMP RESOURCES

gratitude to gift

glory to godly grandeur

generosity

ripen at right time

reap fresh supply of sweet fruits

rich reward at home

indulgence no more

crazy world crack at bottom

revamp resources

Cracked (magazine) - Wikipedia

Note:

To date there are about 740K cases reported, with 35K death in the world. The figures increase at an alarming rate in almost every country daily. Information on Covid 19  is too excessive; over reading them do not help ordinary citizen. Governments are worried about disease control, and economic protection. Hindsight wisdom does not help anyone. From the many forwarded mails in social media, the best citizens could do was abiding the rules recommended, MCO in Malaysia. If you are dead or infected, all these knowledges are really useless. Fancy even a doctor went out jogging despite warning; there’s no community responsibility. Or many attended social gathering or functions, forgetting that the best is STAY AT HOME, STAY FIT TO SURVIVE THE ORDEAL.

Weatherford cartoon: Stock market beating - Opinion - The Pueblo ...

Last year we threw some papaya seeds in the backyard of our rented house; it had grown to about 15 ft tall, bearing almost 30 fruits or more. I pray my gratitude to this tree, feeding us almost every day with organic fruits. After more than a week of stay, we run out of meat and vegetables. It’d crazy to queue in supermarkets or markets and exposed to contamination. With mask on, my wife walked to nearby shop to buy some fruits, vegetables and bread for the week. I drove out to a nearby shop to buy meat. I thought it best to buy cooked food than raw, for the shorter queue and crowd.  With mask and pot, I went to a nearby BKT shop to buy four packets of assorted pork. At 8 am, I was the only customer; there were few cars or people in the vicinity, but no police bloc. Within 20 mins, I was home. I washed the car with soapy water, clean the gate and dustbin top; spray away the dog shit, cigarette butts thrown by my neighbor, plus a dead rat carcass. Then I cleaned up my slippers, sanitize the door of the house, and part of the car interior that I had touched. Thereafter, change all my clothes, and followed by a hot shower. It was only 20 min outside, but half an hour to wash and clean. My wife did the same ritual; she spent half an hour to do their purchases, and the next half an hour to wash and clean. If we were to go out often, then the time spend on these cleaning rituals would be overwhelming. We decide to skip our lunch. Taking three meals a day is not a biological requirement.  The time saved is for keeping fit in exercises, lots of stretching and deep breathing. The body, mind and spirit are never separate.  The isolation allow us to rethink on our balances in living, relate and leisure; time to re learn diet and nutrition, diseases and their medication, and all other therapies.  It is strange that many people find these basic principles hard to follow. They read and talk too much about it, but they hardly do and act.  As a poet narrator, I prefer to pen all these in haiku/senryu, so that readers can share and comment.

The first two pictures were snapped by my hand phone; the cartoons were copied and pasted from the web, with appreciation.

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 539: HUMANIZING HUMANS

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 539: HUMANIZING HUMANS

wave to wife and walk

front to end home exercise

fit to stay alive

WALKING WORKOUT FOR WEIGHT LOSS- HOME WORKOUT - easy to follow ...

greed germs germinate

omnipresent ghastly ghosts

foul in all things touched

Obsessive Compulsive Fear Of Germs Stock Vector - Illustration of ...

heal in sealed confine

contact contamination

masks, gloves, clean and change

DENR on Twitter: "LOOK: Home Quarantine Procedures created by ...

discipline deprived

play media gossip game

boost boredom by blame

Saved By The Bell-carra – New Laws Thwart Jenny Hill's Plans For ...

quarantine breakers

fear social isolation

more than viruses

Cagle Cartoons, Inc. - Search: stock-market

laud divine distance

social border go berserk

humanize humans

CSotD: The Divine Right of Donnie The Daily Cartoonist

Note:

To date, global Covid 19 pandemic has exceeded 656 K, with 31 thousand dead.  US and Italy has overtaken China in total infection. Rest of Europe and other parts of the world are in dire need of help, but hospital beds, equipment, respirators are lacking. In Malaysia, from 22 cases, we explode into 2320, with 27 deaths.  The basic principles by WHO and our government are the same. The CMO (Controlled Movement Oder) is to avoid large migration of people and spread the infection all over. Unfortunately 5 – 10 % of people chose to escape testing, quarantine or isolation.  The government has to impose fines and jail to save lives and economic costs.

Stay At Home order is not easy for many to follow.  Based on my own understanding and practices, and the many forwarded news, rightly or wrongly, I woke in the morning to pen my haiku/senryu before they are forgotten.

We lived in a small terraced house.  We walk from front to end of the house (inside), as walking exercises, with my wife in the opposite traffic. An occasional wave (not waive) added fun, after many turns of straight walk. We do some stretching and breathing exercises to keep fit; repeated several times a day; often during TV commercial break.

We see many people crowded in supermarket to buy their groceries and vegetables. Though they all wear masks, and with some distance, they still run the risk of infection. There are e-shopping and delivery, and exposure to contamination will be less in e trading at times of crisis. Though we did not stock, we have enough food for two. We might skip our lunch and replaced with a just a tea break. We do not want to over eat during isolation. If we venture out, we simply increase our risks of infection to multiple contacts.

However, the most important thing is not just obey the rules, but to re-examine our habits, and rituals, and our priorities in living. My experience in Hospice Care has taught me well. The quarantine breakers are mostly younger people with very poor self -discipline; among them even doctors and graduates. The long haiku/senryu narrate their angst and part of their emotional and psychological turmoil in crisis.

All the cartoons were copied and pasted from the web with appreciation.

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 538: PANDEMIC PONDER

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 538: PANDEMIC PONDER

fittest survive first

adapt, not biology

attune to fast change

Image result for fittest to survive cartoon

fear and sneer hold back

borderless disease in world

rolling out gospel

Image result for borderless disease cartoon

crown for vile virus

censor clowns and cronies to

palpate life’s pulses

Image result for coronavirus crown cartoon

heartken to home stay

steer pass social stance and space

save self through nature

Image result for Trump and corona virus cartoon

covid mutate fast

fixed mindset fail at border

with high human walls

Image result for human walls against corona cartoon

Note:

Covid stands for corona, virus disease first code named in 2019. It is a disease that ignores all human borders, or passports. Social Darwinian taught about “survival of the fittest”, but the fittest, is not always biological, age, or even fitness. The “fitness” applies to the speed of adaptation and adjustment to change for survival. Nations show divergent abilities to change, due to political, religious or cultural reasons in combating fast mutation in the virus and the manifested disease in the human bodies. For instance, we see aging population in both Italy and Japan, but their outcomes are different. We could state that Japanese are more disciplined than the Italians; their medical system and organization better. Moreover they heed the Wuhan experience, and prepared themselves for the epidemic. Moreover, it is reported that a third of virus cases are “silent carriers, so these people are “brewing” quietly, until it explodes. Italy has almost 60,000 cases and 5476 death; Japan has 1101 cases with 14 dead only. In other words, Italy predated Wuhan in the epidemic. The same scenario speak for US, with reported 35,538 cases and 458 dead; not counting the unreported before Wuhan

 Malaysia added another 212 cases, with 14 dead, following the exponential curve of Italy. The nation does not have enough respirators, so none for over 60 years, if fallen sick. The best for senior is to keep alive is to stay home and follow the rules of hygiene well. Once contracted and infected, the senior survival rate decreased. We are fortunate to have a new Health Minister, a doctor, instead of a politician. We are paying the costly price of massive congregation. Isolation, transient, gives us time and space to rethink our meaning of living.

Covid 19 makes us to rethink about the future of humanity. We need to cooperate to stay alive. We need to reflect on our food and environment, exercises and personal hygiene. In other words, we have to ponder on our meaning of living, and find our connection to stay alive and well.

The cartoons are all copied and pasted from the open web, with appreciation.

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 537: HOME PRISONS

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 537: HOME PRISONS

stay at home protests

imprison, not isolate

fear of lost freedom

Image result for home stay prison due pandemic isolation cartoon

right not to obey

mortality rate rises

crowded case contact

Image result for isolation at home inpandemic cartoon

prostrated power

sanitize shared saliva

safe social distance

Image result for sharing space in prayers cartoon

Note:

In a pandemic, it is recommended to isolate by staying at home. Many see the isolation as a kind of imprisonment, or curb of individual liberty and freedom. Strange they protest in the street, often violent and without mask or cover. Thus their conduct endangers themselves, for it promotes more physical and dirty contact. They think it is their right not to obey. Recently a cardiologist openly defied the rule. He might have good arguments, but as a doctor, he sent wrong messages to the public about the simple basic rule of good community safety. Often many highly intelligent people do stupid thing, even the President of the United States who super believed anti malaria medication could treat Covid 19. Our Health Minister thought drinking warm water flushed the virus down the gut, though it was respiratory infection. Another minster was caught licking his paper thrice and touching the microphone in few seconds in news broadcast on Covid 19. Many doctors and nurses in the Hospital were not wearing masks, despite China gave 10 million pieces. In short, many still do not follow basic rules. To date, our cases have risen from 22 to 1183, with 6 death, and the increase would soon be exponential.

Unfortunately many could not see the merits of isolation, or even aloneness. Without that quality, there would be no poetry. A safe social distance does not mean we do not socialize at all. In all our relate interactions, there is always a distance, a space for us to be free.

The cartoons were all copied and pasted from the web. Thanks to cartoonists.

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 536: COVID CREATIVITY

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 536: COVID CREATIVITY

tooth brush my wrist band

the paste glistens and whitens

wash watch to keep clean

creative home stay

exercises to keep fit

haiku to heal mind

Image result for home stay to avoid covid 19

borderless disease

kill unhygienic, not age

touch hearts and not hands

Image result for quarantine  exercises at home cartoon

Note:

We drove to Woodland, Johor. We were just five km away from the immigration check point, with five hours of queue time; later two kilometers away with two hours before closure at midnight. The traffic was a standstill; seemed it was closed or half closed before time. After midnight we waited and hope for another hour in vain and then pulled out and left for there was no public announcement. Five hours prior to this, many people started to walk. It wasn’t safe, for the motor bikes were moving in all directions with their hoots, and the lanes were narrowed. Later we found out these walkers were crowded along corridors of immigration building; exposing themselves of infection due to close contact in confined spaces. We drove back home sleepy, but rested twice in car parks along the highway.

Our trip was regular travel plan for over a decade; not an exodus to escape covid 19. We obey by the “Stay Home” order; no hardship for us whether in Malaysia or Singapore. Instead of walking in the park and exercise in the gyn, we perform the same at home. As I brush my wrist watch under the tap, the flow of poetry runs out of the mind.