Thursday, June 15, 2017



The poem  “Pelakon Terbaik Kami” , Cerita Dalam Cerita, ITBM, 2010:18 was inspired by watching interesting monologues,  including  the one by  Khalid Salleh,  Monolog Jual Ubat . Khalid Salleh has been awarded The Best Actor Award at Asia Pacific Film Festival, 1999 for his role in Jogho directed by U Wei Haji Shaari.

I like watching monologues.  It is one of the most important and interesting medium of social criticism The actors talk loudly on stage about social ills, corrupted leaders, deplorable conditions of the poor people.    Watching Khalid as a medicine man gave me the idea that actors are actually not acting when they are on stage. It is there that they speak their mind out. It is on stage that they exert their voice and become themselves. Once they come down they become quiet and polite. There is so much that they have to hide. They feel that it is outside the stage that they are being watched and observed by larger (and dangerous) audience, so they have to be careful with their words and deeds.

This is what I said in Pelakon Terbaik Kami.  This morning I translated it into English as OUR BEST ACTOR. 


He won the Best Actor award
We did not question
As he was excellent

I remember he played so well
The role of a medicine man
His coarse angry voice trembled
chanting sermons
to drive away evil spirits and demons
 “ hey you seven headed devils
Your name is treachery
Your name is corruption
Get out of the body and soul
Of my people
Whose life you had  strangled
you plagued and tortured my grandchildren
that they ran into the jungle frightened
leaving you and your cronies
free to own the cities.

Once I asked him
Your acting was marvellous
The audience was stunned
You rampaged the stage in rage
Shouting and kicking
This is different
From you that we know as a person
Gentle and soft spoken

He smiled and answered
As usual his words were limited
What you see on the stage was the real me
Screaming at the people in power
Off the stage I became an actor
swallowing my anger
and forced to remain silent
watched by the larger audience

On stage I am the real man
Who need not pretend
 the acting begins.
when the play ends
(original tittle : Pelakon Terbaik Kami)


Dia terpilih sebagai Pelakon terbaik 
Dan kami cukup puas hati
 setiap kali dia beraksi.

Antara lain yang paling kukenang
Dia melakonkan watak pawang
Dengan getar suara membaca mantera
Begitu lantang menghalau hantu  jembalang
 “Hey jin kepala tujuh
Jin bernama Jin khianat
Keluarlah kamu dari jasad rakyat
Anak cucuku sudah lama sakit tenat
Sudah lama melarat
Hey hantu segala hantu
Hantu pembelit hantu penipu
Jangan ganggu  anak cucuku
Sehingga mereka lari ketakutan
 Ke  pinggir pinggir hutan
Tinggallah kamu dan para kroni
Menguasai kota ini.

Aku pernah bertanya dia
Sungguh hebat kau berlakon
Semua penonton terpegun
Bagaimana kau menjadi  pawang
Bengis dan garang
Menghentak dan menendang
 sangat berlainan dari dirimu
Yang sopan dan pendiam

Dia hanya tersenyum menjawab
Seperti biasa kata-katanya cukup terhad
yang kau lihat di pentas itu
Sebenarnya adalah  aku
Di luar pentas aku adalah pelakon.
Yang menelan  kemarahan
Menjadi sopan santun
Kerana   di luar pentas
 lebih ramai penonton

Di pentas aku bebas beraksi
Sebagai  diri sendiri.

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