Friday, 6 October 2017

beautiful people, beautiful problems

all snuggled up on her bed in her white, dreamy duvet that looks more like bubbles of white cloud--her body is warming up comfortably in this 10 celcius weather. in her heart, it just felt right to let the words out on this late friday night. before she started letting her fingers dance along with the thoughts coming out like a stream of river, she opened her spotify playlist and put beautiful people beautiful problems by lana del ray on repeat. everything felt like they are in the right place. she's ready.

i'd like to write about yesterday. it was thursday, and i decided to go to a TEDxUCLWomen Launch Event because the theme was discussing mental health through spoken poetry and hip hop, and i bet you all know already how much i am into mental health. but mental health through spoken poetry, it's definitely something i couldn't say no to. i got there quite early so i made myself coffee and took a nice seat in the middle of the crowd. i wanted to be close enough to the speakers, but not too close where i would feel exposed. 

thankfully, when the emcee announced that we were starting with the first speaker, they turned off all the lights in the room. all that's left were the fairy lights scattered around floor, and the red fairy lights they put around the speaker's neck when it's their turn to speak. gosh, it was pure beauty, to be perfectly honest. everyone seemed very well ready to engross themselves in the poems read aloud by the speakers. it was a beautiful kind of silence, surrounded by darkness. it made me feel safe. it made everyone feel it's okay to let their guards down and to be vulnerable. it was a safe space. 

my favorite speaker from that night, sanaah, started off with her first poem, "my father's accent". she didn't give a lot of her introduction because she said we would understand her background through the poem, and sure we did, in such an emotional way. sanaah's voice was small and soft and it sounded like the voice of a mother reading a bedtime story aloud to her children. it was such a comforting voice full with emotions, it made me tear up and i tried hard not to keep my tears falling, and that's when i heard the girl behind me sobbing. 

when her poems talked broadly under the themes of identity and home, i couldn't help but got drowned in my emotions. what does home mean to me? for a person like me who's left pieces of myself in every country i go, which one do i call home? for a person like me who's left pieces of my heart in the people i've met along the way, how do i decide which one is my home? and the fact that i just moved to london for less than a month, her poems revoked a plethora of sadness inside me. but to be honest, i felt relieved. i found out i wasn't alone. 

it was such an inspiring night for me as it was the first spoken poetry event i've been to. the words were fresh and raw, their voices so soft and passionate they made my soul shivered, in the darkness. when they read their poems out loud, their words and thoughts became alive. it was real. everyone felt it. i felt it. by the end of it, my heart was full and heavy. 

i loved the fact that it reminded me of the event i went to in malaysia before. it was not spoken poetry, rather the speakers there read out their short stories to us instead of poems. i deeply loved that one too, especially for the fact that aan mansyur was there to read his stories. and boy, it's like hearing rangga's words from ada apa dengan cinta. aan does have his way with words, they equate to love. besides aan, there were budi citawan and ashikin, both ladies whom i truly admire the courage and audacity of their work. there is so much inspiration around ourselves, if we let our guards down and admit there is so much we could learn from other people. i am humbled. 

even writing this, my heart is full. i love words and i love people who are not afraid to convey their emotions into words. godspeed. 

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