Near

My first post since last year December, 2015. It feels relieving to finally be able to write again:

 

I am the music inside your heart,

the lullaby that sings for your soul.

I am the slow beats tapping inside your heart,

The memories parading within your mind.

I am the clouds that confuse you,

The airy specter of all your dreams and desires.

 

I am a powerless entity forever revolving

Beside you and within you

Always there, always near.

 

 

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Book Review on The Orphan Master’s Son

I finished reading The Orphan Master’s Son by Adam Johnson a few days ago and thought it was so brilliant that I really had to write a review on it and that too, on my blog. When I finished reading it, I remember feeling empty and a bit dazed since I was so engrossed into the plot. I felt as if my whole life had turned into a piece of blank slate. I am the kind of person who is really picky about what I read (because I don’t want to regret buying a book I don’t enjoy). I am also the kind whom after reading a horrible book would feel like raging against the world, rip the damned thing into shreds and hurl it at the author’s face. In short, very few writing styles suit my preference but The Orphan Master’s Son just blew me away not to mention that I struggled with the prose at first instance. Before encountering this masterpiece, I was totally in love with Three Souls by Janie Chang but then this book came along and changed everything. Not that I don’t like Three Souls anymore, I still do but The Orphan Master’s Son – a tad bit more.

So getting on to my main topic, if you haven’t read it or heard about it yet, The Orphan Master’s Son is a novel that will leave you desolate and feeling shocked and heartbroken. If you’re reading with the same inquisitiveness and compassion for the protagonist that I had, you will feel for him throughout the story. I love the author’s unique way of dividing the story into halves so as to show us two very different settings that took place and how the protagonist transitions into the person that he will become. To make it short and refrain from revealing the whole story, the summary of this book is that it’s about a North Korean orphan called Jun Do who believes himself to be the Orphan Master’s son though in truth, he isn’t and he realizes that eventually. He goes on to have many adventures in search for his mom and in search of his own identity, who he really is in this world while working for his country’s regime at the same time. A tragic circumstance changes his life and from there, I’ll leave it for the readers to wonder…

The pace of this book is quite easy to follow. but it took me one month to finish due to my year-end exams and also because some passages rather confused me. I had to reread them again in order to understand what was going on.

Apart from that, this book really opened my eyes to what life must be like in North Korea though I have read many critics and reviews claiming that it is an exaggerated representation of North Korea, caricatured and heavily biased and I agree to some extent. In spite of that, it showed me the brutality of this country’s Communist regime which has taken the lives of so many innocent civilians and causing fear, distrust and even contention among families and friends. It showed me the way it has devoured every sense of their sanity and stripped away the freedom to live their lives based on their own choice and not upon the dictates of a savage, cold and ruthless government. In their regime, there is no true word for freedom except when it comes from the state, the government. Why? Because for them, the State is the bastion of all freedom and the State is no other than the dictator. As the author himself mentioned in one of his interviews, all citizens (of North Korea) are somehow like orphans with no real permanent identity. They all belong to the State who controls every aspects of their lives. Thus, the true Orphan Master is no other than the Dictator himself. Pretty sinister but an all-too deep and coherent interpretation. It perfectly explains the whole meaning of the story

To sum it up, Jun Do is the epitome of every man – every citizen who has suffered, lost a kin, friend and their life to the regime. He is their hero and the harbinger of humanity who has shown that even when terror, injustice and despair plagues a society, a nation, there can still be a glimmer of hope and that it is up to the individual to build that change. It tells also that sacrifice is the biggest love, the greatest gift you can ever give to a person. This book does not only have a thrilling and unpredictable plot, it also teaches you lessons on love, identity, sacrifice and hardships while at the same time, opening the doors to a nation so many people in this planet do not know about.

Tell Me All Your Secrets

Glowing moon shines luminously at my window.

Your face lit up in the dark, like the Moon in

her glorious splendor against the deep blue sky.

Tell me all your secrets, tell me what you hide behind

those soft, gloomy eyes. Those wondrous, lustrous, amber eyes

ever-glinting, ever-staring into my eyes and into my heart.

Tell me your secrets, I’ll hold your hand if that makes you

feel better. You can lean on my shoulders if you’re afraid of the dark,

if you’re afraid of all the secrets hidden within those untold

shadows never tread before my man.

Take my hand and lie close to me, I want to feel your heart

beating against my chest, against every sinew of my bones

and inside my transient, hazy mind.

You and I – we will open our minds and reveal each

other. We will bare our souls, not just our bodies

for two souls become one in love.

Tell me all those secrets stored inside you, inside those smooth silky clothes

sweetly hugging your curves. Tell them to me because

nothing ever stays hidden between lovers and friends.

I’ll sit through the night, lie through the night.

Share with me your love and your passion, your envy and cravings

your hatred and sorrows.

Tell me all your secrets until every sentence has been said and every

word has been spoken away into the night.

Dreams Of Our Lost Times

Dreams like pieces of a puzzle left lying on the table

Scattered all over the place, like fragments of an unfinished story.

I dreamed about you last night,

You didn’t hear me, You didn’t see me.

I called out to you but my voice was silent

Your eyes were as vacant as the hole in my heart

Ashes of memories blown away by the wind,

I call out you to in the night, will you hear me, will I hear you?

But the silence echoed and sent me nothing but the darkness.

– I.K.

Come Back

Sometimes, I feel …

That you might just be a voice from another end of a long tunnel

Lost somewhere inside a vague dream, playing senseless inside my head

While your hand must have tried to reach for me,

I am sorry that I ignored and let you slip away

Inside the dark currents of my nightmares

I hear your endless cries being washed away

And your voice faltering into the dim silence of my dreams.

 

 

– I.K.

Take Me With You

Take Me with You, to the moon and back, as we cross the deep celestial ocean.

Take Me with You, around the world and beyond, as we leave our footprints on the soft fabrics of the earth.

Hold onto my hands and never let them go

else the wind blows me away or the tides whisk me off

And you wait for my return as the days turn into years.

Take Me with You, around the dance of fire, as we gaze into each other with fervent, glinting eyes.

Take Me with You, as we soar among the clouds and towards the ends of the earth – a hazy, silver outline.

Let us fade into the sands of the wintry desert

and inhale the soothing fragrance of ice-capped mounts

We will sit by a campfire under the bottomless sky

A violet curtain sprinkled with ivory stars,

as bright as the ones in your quiescent, lucid eyes.