SIMS ILLUSIONS

I’ve been playing Sims 3 ever since I was 13 or 14 years old. At first it was just a computer game. I bought the Sims 3 base game and the Pets expansion pack. For a long time I played with just those two versions. I would create families, mine including, with pets and obscure animals. Other times I would create individuals according to my liking: handsome men who would pursue women effortlessly and women who were driven with ambition.

At times, this would become me and other times, it was just someone. But the danger of this was that life became blurred between who I wanted to be and the realism of who I am. Perhaps this is where it started, maybe not. A person grows from a baby, to toddler, to child, to teen, to young adult. In all these phases you learn new things of yourself, of life, of who and what you are or meant to be. You change. I did, in a lot of ways.

I discovered the cheats in the Sims and now I can”t play without them. Money problems, no problem, motherlode. Relationship problems, no problem, just drag the bar to where you want it. For every thing I had a cheat and solution. No more hunger, no more tiredness, no more stress. The problem with this is that I wish, just like Harry Potter fans wish that they could go to Hogwarts, that I could control my life just like I do in Sims.

Control… The though of being Godly and in control of others lives seems so cool at first. You have the power to change and to inflect something on someone’s life. You can make them believe in their dreams or you can make them miserable. The thing is with this power comes responsibility. I struggle to control and keep my family of four, sometimes two, happy all the time. Then the thought of my God, I’m a Christian but I believe that in other religions it would be the same, who controls and has the most power of all, that gives people hope and believe, keeping most of them happy, a sense of word choice. I don’t want to be God, but I want to be the creator of something greater than me.

I used the game to escape life and my situation at home, at school, at work. I grew fond of this escape where I can control everything that happens to me, but life doesn’t work that way. That would be boring, though right?, the unexpected is perhaps the most exciting thing about life, although it isn’t pleasant all the time.

I got some other expansion packs and though it is nice to see and live another life, a different life, it is key to keep in mind the realism of your own. Do’t be blinded by power or disillusioned with life because of a game, or drugs or any other addictions or escapes you use. Live! (Easier said than done. True!) Take control. (Easier said than done. True!)

Be the person you create on Sims. Be the better you. Change if you must. Live the life you want to, because tomorrow is no promise, life is just a day-to-day and a second grant of life is unlikely. So take today as the last day of your stuck life which you don’t want to live and starting tomorrow, be the person you want to be and live the life you dream of.

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Goodbye Sir

He left me a letter at the back of the book I was reading. We spent three days together, mostly reading each others books and at times we would join in conversation. He told me about his new job in San Francisco and why he was leaving the country side. To be honest, he didn’t look like a man who would fit in anywhere. He had a country boy smile, but his eyes longed for something more, something meaningful.

Dear Catherine, he used my full name, although we spoke of one another as Kate and no, not Leopold, but Jeff (Jefferson). He wrote the whole letter himself, his handwriting wasn’t the best, so it took me a while to decipher what he wrote.

This was perhaps the best weekend of my life. That was such a cliche, meeting a girl on a train and making small conversation, reading her deepest desires and then just like in the movies give her a sign that you might like her. Anyway, he wrote that he wished he could ride along for a little while longer, but he couldn’t. Other obligations… He ended the letter with perhaps an overused phrase,  Yours truly Jefferson. P.S. I might take you upon that offer. Hope to see you somewhere where fate might grant us another chance.

 

At the station, I waved him goodbye. At that point I haven’t read the letter yet and if I did, I wouldn’t change one thing. For me, he was a companion for the lonesome train ride. Nothing more. Nothing less.

He kissed my cheek, like almost lovers would. I smiled, what else could I do? He climbed off the train, and I waved mouthing the words “Goodbye Sir”. No name, just sir. He was and probably will stay an acquaintance, someone I met briefly on a train to nowhere…

Koue oorlog

Dit is die bitter koffie sonder suiker wat my aan die koue oorlog herinner. Nie die koue oorlog wat ons op skool in geskiedenis geleer het nie, nee, die koue oorlog tussen my en jou. Met ‘n skietballeton van opgekropte emosie en geheime gevoelens het woorde nes bomme op die oorlogsveld neergeval en alles om dit uitmekaar geskiet en vernietig. Ek staan nou op die plek waar alles begin het. Met ‘n wit vlag in my hand, maar ek het geen benul waarvoor ek werklik ingee en vrede wil maak nie.

Die stilswye van ‘n man wat ek lief het, herinner my aan die koue oorlog tussen my en hom. Waar ons woorde opgedroog het en vermeng is met die sand en grond en bloed en herinneringe van die grens. As ‘n man terugkeer van die weermag, van die oorlog, van die grens, dan is hy ‘n “changed” man, ‘n gekwesde bokkie met oë wat hard geword het. Sy woorde sluk bitter. Hy het die vermoë om te praat oor wat gebeur het, oor hoe hy voel, wat hy dink verloor. Nou is hy ‘n stom man wat voor hom uitkyk en die herinneringe van die grens oor en oor herleef. Hy kry snags nagmerries oor hoe die bloed sy onskuld vergiet. Die lewe is nie meer wat dit was nie, en dit sal nooit weer ‘n “gelukkige” plek wees nie.

 

2018.01

Hi,

Na vyf maande se stilswye, het ek weer besluit om te skryf en te blog.

Laas jaar was die blog ‘n heenkome in tye waar ek stom gevoel het, waar my stem nie klank kon dra nie. Hier kon ek my sê sê en net hoop dat iemand dit sal hoor, of lees, en my mening ag. Coffee Talks het my ‘n rede gegee om te debateer oor wat reg en verkeerd is, oor hoe ek oor sekere goed voel en wat ek dink.

2018 is ‘n rowwe jaar vir my. Dit is ‘n jaar waar ek myself verloor het en to be honest ek weet nie hoe of waar om myself te vind nie. Ek het nou net Gevangenis 2017 gelees en sekere dele van daardie meisie wat dit geskryf het, ken ek nie meer nie. Ek het daarin geskryf dat dit normaal is om jouself te verloor, want jy gaan weer groei en verander en jouself in ‘n nuwe lig leer ken.

Maar wie is ek, nou? Ek bsef nou eers dat ek nooit werklik ‘n identiteit buite skool gehad het nie. Ek het Tienerkind gehad, ‘n persona wie ek was in die vermaakbedryf. Maar my identiteit, wie ek geken het en op staat gemaak het, was die skoolmeisie: ‘n nerd met ‘n titseltjie drama – akademie. Naskool het daardie identiteit weggekwyn en moet ek nou die grootmenswêreld sonder ‘n identiteit instap. Ek weet nie meer wie en wat ek is nie. Ek weet nie wie ek veronderstel is om te wees nie. Ek weet nie wat ek met my lewe wil doen nie. Ek voel rigtingloos en verward, gebroke ideale versplinter en drome wat vergete agterbly.

Wie is ek? Of wie wil ek wees? Wie is ek bedoel om te wees? Vrae maal in my kop, twyfel en onsekerheid is ek vol gestop. Ek lê saans met wilde idees van wegloop en oorbegin, maar die sekerheid en beskerming van huis en ouers en mense wie vir jou uitkyk, en finansiële bystand, hinder hierdie idees om ‘n werklikheid te word.

Ek voel vasgekeer in alledaagse routine. Word wakker. Werk. Kyk series of TV. Eet. Lees. Stort. Slaap. Môre weer dieselfde… Ek wil uitgaan, leef! Maar om eerlik te wees, ek weet nie wat dit werklik beteken nie. Beteken dit dat ek na ‘n pub toe moet gaan en drink? Beteken dit dat ek stringe ouens moet hê en losbandig moet wees? Beteken dit dat ek elke aand moet uitgaan? Beteken dit dat ek my vrese moet ophok jaag? Wat beteken dit om te leef??

Soveel vrae, so min antwoorde…

Gevangenis 2017

Na twaalf jaar staan ek op parool. Vandag trek ek my laaste strepie op die betonmuur. Ek het my straf uitgedien – soms met mismoedigheid dat hierdie dag eindelik sou aanbreek en soms het ek die groter prentjie gesien (miskien kan ek tog iets leer).

Ek moes ‘n brief skryf waarin ek my skuld op die aanklag van (poging tot) moord beken.

~ Volgens die wetlike definisie van moord op die webtuiste legal dictionary, is moord: “the unlawful killing of a human being with malice aforethought. The term malice aforethought did not necessarily mean that the killer planned or premeditated on the killing, or that he or she felt malice toward the victim. Generally, malice aforethought referred to a level of intent or reck-lessness that separated murder from other killings and warranted stiffer punishment.” ~

Ek staan vandag voor jou met die bloed van ‘n kind op my hande. Ek het eens op ‘n tyd gewens ek is groot, sodat ek ook die lewe kon geniet. Maar soos ek ouer word, sien ek al wat kort is my kinderdae, vol lag en speel, sonder bekommernis of verantwoordelikheid. Ek het die kind in my besweer sodat ek vinniger ouer kon word, vinniger verantwoordelik en volwasse kon wees.

Die wêreld is ‘n inkleurboek wat mense met hul persoonlikhede, glimlagte en duistere motiewe moet inkleur. ‘n Wêreld wat in neon gedoop is, blyk swart en wit vir my. Ek sien nie meer die kleurryke nasie van sprokies en -liefde nie. Ek het van die ‘yellow brick road’ wat jou na die kasteel van verbeelding lei, gestuier.

Soms wil mens jou brood aan altwee kante gebotter hê. Aan die een kant, veg mense met hoop wat in hul woed vir die positiewe, die silwer randjie aan die donker wolk wat oor ons koppe hang. Aan die ander kant, is dit wanhoop wat oorweldig word met die bose, misdaad, oorlog, hongersnood, droogte. Ons breek ons helde af en verwoes gedenktekens omdat ons wanhopig is oor die toekoms en vasklou aan die verlede met al sy begonne foute, seer en blaam. Dit is ons noodroep vir krygers soos Albert Luthuli en Nelson Mandela wat die mag van vrede, vryheid en geregtigheid verstaan het, om op te staan en ons te lei, want ons bevind onsself in ‘n finansiële, ekonomiese, politiese, sosiolistiese verknorsing sonder enige rigting of aanwysing hoe om die stryd te beveg.

 R10-noot

©Melissa van Eeden

Groen is jou vel

Wat ‘n storie vertel

Van ‘n lewe gestroop

Skaars genoeg vir ‘n brood

 

Jou hande bedel vir geregtigheid

Vandag is Jy ‘n held wêreldwyd

Tog is Jou glimlag gekreukel en gevou

Na jare se klippe kou en nasiebou

 

Jy is waardevol

Die koeël is in die kol

Onse gebrokeling

Môre ‘n vreemdeling

 

Nes jy is ek kaal gestroop

My identiteit en siel verkoop

Maar ons eer word betoon

Êrens tussen munte en note woon

 

 Ons gesigte op die 10 rand noot

Skaars genoeg vir ‘n brood

Ek het hoop in die mensdom verloor. Ek het einde Mei 2017 ‘n blog post geskryf oor my siening oor vandag se jeug en samelewing. “Our youth and society has become a mankind of glorious disgust and indolence. Our future is in the hands of our youth – that smokes the clouds we see (clouds that don’t bring rain, but pollution), that still depends on Mommy and Daddy rather than accepting responsibility, that is too frightened to speak their minds like Shakespeare or EE Cummings or any other pioneer in the previous centuries.” Lees gerus die hele blog post (https://coffeetalks101.wordpress.com/2017/05/28/did-life-get-easier/) om die waarheid agter die stelling te begryp.

“Ek gaan jou nog vermoor!” Poging tot moord. Ek wou al hoeveel mense vermoor het, maar ek het nie. Dalk maak dit my ‘n beter persoon, ek weet nie. Ek het in drie gevegte gekom. Twee beseer. Maar nog nooit iemand vermoor nie. Die Bybel meen die tong is skerper as die swaard. Soms is woorde genoeg om mens tot moord te dryf.

Ek het ‘n brief geskryf oor jou (jy sal weet wie jy is).

Suicide Note

I have kept too many secrets. I tried to be strong. I fought against it: emotionally, physically, mentally. It was stronger as it finally destroyed me.

I am dead. No, not physically. Well, not yet. I am dead inside. I don’t feel anything except pain and brokenness. At night, I drown in my sorrows. Feeling the tears sliding down my cheeks, makes me feel vulnerable. How could I let you win again?

I am a man. Therefore, I ought to be tough. Nobody can see me cry. I ought to be strong. I must – I… must…

Can’t you see how I look? Can’t you sense my insecurities? No, why would you? I don’t know why you do the things you do. Maybe you were bullied at school, at home, in life or maybe you try to hide your own insecurities. I don’t know, but what I know is that your jokes, your words and actions cut through my skin and now…

Look at me. Do you see it? (See the scars close to my pulse on my left arm.) You did this to me. Every single cut comes from your knife. At first, you used a blunt knife. It was gentle, and soft, and innocent. It wasn’t sufficient. The knife became sharper and sharper. Its touch became less gentle, less soft, less innocent.

I have been noticing that you, too, have lost your innocence in this big, mean world. Don’t feel guilty. It happens to all of us.

I have lost my innocence at the age of fifteen. I know what you may think: he lost his virginity, he drinks too much, he does drugs, he smokes. No, if you thought any of that, you were wrong – and it shows me how much you really know me. I have lost my childhood innocence – thinking that life is simple, rainbow-coloured and nice.

I learned the hard way to fend for myself. After my mother’s death, I couldn’t cope. I dwelled through a senseless life. One afternoon I stumbled upon you. You smiled at me. The moment you started to talk about being a friend and caring for others, I thought this is my chance.

I did not plan to fall in love. It just happened. I did not plan to fall out of love, either. It just happened.

Not feeling anything for you, makes this much easier. This is beyond the bullying and you not loving me. This is not about you, or the world, or anyone else.

I am doing this to save myself.

Die gevangenis verander mens. Ek het myself op sekere vlakke gevind, en op ander vlakke het ek myself weer verloor. Maar dit is lewe – ‘n avontuur waar die ware ek groei en verander, waar ek myself op ‘n plek gaan vind en myself weer in iemand of iets gaan verloor. Die lewe is ‘n konstante vloei van lewe, die tiek-tok van die klok en die heelal wat vir ons tekens stuur van kanse vat, waag, leef en liefhê.

Na twaalf jaar staan ek op parool. My een voet buite die selle terwyl my ander voet steeds standvastig in die selle staan. Ek kyk vir ‘n laaste keer na die sel waar twaalf jaar opgesluit is in herinneringe, lesse, lewe en groei. Waar vriende gekom en gegaan het. Waar ek my eerste liefde ontmoet het. Waar ek met ‘n gebroke hart leer voel het. Waar my siel met ‘n vliegtuigkaartjie gevlug het na ‘n ander era, ‘n ander wêreld. Waar ek begin droom het.

Boom

©Melissa van Eeden

by hierdie boom het ek groot geword

in die koelte my onskuld gelaat

en in die son begin dans

 

die seisoene het my bevry

waar die kleure met die tye verander

die blomme het gebot tot die lewe se lot

die seisoene het my geboei

gevangene tot die verwyt van tyd

waar die winter skuins na somer draai

trane met verlepte blomme op die graf verlate

met die afsydigheid en teer wat die dood forseer

waar die blomme nie meer sal blom

en die son nie meer sal kom

by hierdie boom het ek die lewe geniet

geleer van die wêreld deur die oë van fases

en van die lewe

waar elke einde weer begin

Gevangenis 2017 – Ek word voorwaardelik vrygelaat. Januarie 2018 verskyn ek weer voor die hof, regter en jurie wat dan oor my toekoms sal beslis.

My toekoms is nou net een tree weg.

 

Hierdie is net die begin.

xxx

Droom groot!

IT

I was left amazed by the new adapted Stephen King movie, IT. I am not a fan of horror, although I was left astonished with the quality of the film, as well as the themes it addresses.

I sat in the IMAX theatre awaiting the pre-release of IT, with a bowl of popcorn and Coke. On my one side sat a man in his thirties and on my other side a seventeen-year-old boy. As the movie started, I noticed how some people created their own way of dealing with the horror the film was about to bring. Laughs were one of the most common. By the end of the movie, everyone in the cinema was shook in one way or another. I sat there as the credits rolled and thought about how brilliant Stephen King was.

It exploits people’s fears (I think King had done some research on the most common fears of man, which weren’t the everyday spiders and snakes). In one way or another, the common viewer can identify with the character, the fear or the situation. By identifying with the fear, the viewer is forced to reckon with it. The film expresses that fear conquers one’s mind – if you let it. (“His fear was already gone; it had slipped away from him as easily as a nightmare slips away from a man who wakes, cold-skinned and gasping from its grip; who feels his body and stares at its surroundings to make sure that none of it had ever happened and who then begins at once to forget it. Half is gone at the time his feet hit the floor; three-quarters of it by the time he emerges from the shower and begins to towel off; all by the time he finishes breakfast. All gone. . . until the next time, when, in the grip of the nightmare, all fears will be remembered.”)

The themes in the film are dexterously introduced to the audience, possessed by fear and the characters’ actions. Immediate themes that come to mind are friendship, bullying, peer pressure. Throughout the film, the theme friendship is tested. The losers’ club are faced with their own fears and whether they can face (IT). Bullying – a serious matter which alters some of the characters’ fears or actions – is a global issue, especially in high school. Subjects such as abuse, molestation and rape by parents and closed ones are exposed through the emotional and psychological effect on the characters. Overprotective parents and the loss of a sibling rage children to act against their parents’ wishes. (“But who knows how long a grief may last? Isn’t it possible that, even thirty or forty years after the death of a child or a brother or a sister, one may half waken, thinking of that person with the same lost emptiness, that feeling of places which may never be filled… not even in death?”)

The quality of the film is impressive. The imagery used throughout the film creates the sense of horror that will scar the viewers for that moment, if not for life. The sound screams to the greatness of an IMAX theatre where the sounds of wood floor creaking, the teasing voices of familiarity and salvation to the captured souls (“We all float down here!”) and taunting music lures through the seats and finally whispers an unanticipated exhale in your ear.

 

I hope (it) captures you to face and finally conquer your fears. “You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’” – Eleanor Roosevelt.

 

*(All quotations are from the Stephen King novel, IT.)

Follow the link to see how It would lure you into the sewers: http://lolsided.com/?quiz=131.

 

TIME

Tick-tock. Tick-tock. Time is running out on the clock. The hours are mere seconds away.

In this deprivation, I ask, “WHAT IS TIME?”

We measure our days in time, in seconds, minutes and hours. According to exactlywhatistime.com there are various short definitions proven by physics such as Albert Einstein. The definitions may seem incomplete, but time is never really a comprehensive orgy. Here is some of the definitions listed on the website:

  • what clocks measure (attr. to physicists Albert Einstein, Donald Ivey, and others)
  • what prevents everything from happening at once (physicist John Wheeler and others)
  • a linear continuum of instants (philosopher Adolf Grünbaum)
  • a certain period during which something is done (Medical Dictionary)
  • a continuum that lacks spatial dimensions (Encyclopaedia Britannica)

To be honest, all these definitions make sense. We use time to schedule our lives. You work from nine to five. You plan to go out at eight. We use time to measure our days. Time is consistent. Every millisecond is precise. Every hour lets the clock scream as time seem to run out or joyously celebrate another hour gone by. I remember when I was a child, I would visit my grandma. In her living room, there was this clock. At every hour, it had this ding-dong sound to indicate what hour it was. Time is given to us as deadlines – dead: time is given to us from our birth to your death; deadlines: time is used to preserve order, assurance and deliverance, and writer’s block. I hate to write in a time controlled environment. I am forced to suppress my thoughts and ideas without developing any creative concepts, but rather ideas that seem concrete and justifiable. I have read along the way that there is no time in space. I don’t know if it is true, but imagine for a moment that time didn’t exist.

I had a dream this morning. It was nine o’clock. Time ran marathons around me. I had to run against time to save whatever it was I had to save. I can’t really remember the whole dream, but I remember feeling anxious as time would run out and life will surpass me. We all run this marathon against time and life. No one is immortal and can beat this life. There is an eternity to try, but we will never exceed. Or perhaps we just need an Albert Einstein who would dare to tempt fate and time and life. We need someone who will fight for science and physics and the wonders of the world. Is that perhaps you? When I woke up out of this dream, it was barely seven o’clock. Time wasn’t speeding along on the highway, yet it felt like it. Have you ever felt that time moves faster when you are asleep than when you are awake?

There is a lot of theories and philosophies about time. I am peculiarly interested in the modern philosophies where no one wants to admit the existence of time.

Presentism

This philosophy believes that only the present is real (thus calling it presentism), while the view that all points in time are equally “real” is referred to as eternalism.

Presentism would ultimately erase our history. No more Apartheid. No more Cold War. No more Nazis and Hitler. This philosophy rules out any past or future, but thrusts on the present. You ought to live for today, and not for tomorrow, nor for yesterday. “Thus, according to presentism, only present objects and present experiences can be said to truly exist, and things come into existence and then drop out of existence.”

Lady Antebellum sings this song called “I was here”. With presentism in mind, can you leave your mark on earth, in life? I recently encountered a lot of references to leaving your mark and the human’s desperate desire to be remembered and their frantic fight against immortality. I have read stories and poems, heard songs and viewed paintings that all scream their creator’s aspiration to life (or to die). Every one of us long to a sense of belonging and identity. We ought to admit it to ourselves that we are mortal beings that will be born into a life that is not all moonshine and roses, that we will live and that we will die. It is the circle of life. Vincent van Gogh never painted to leave a mark, or that is what I think. He painted because it was his passion. He wasn’t recognised for it – for I brilliancy and genius at the time. It was only after his death that his work got the appreciation it deserved. Perhaps, you are struggling and cannot see the light at the end of the tunnel. Perhaps, you need time which life refuses to give you. Perhaps, you are reading this to comprehend time and life and your situation.

Our society has put a curse on time, describing it as a burden, when we should in fact be expressing time in the love we give, in the moments we create, in the quality and quantity of things that we do.

The late Whitney Houston described eternity as moments of overcoming fears, becoming your dream and to embrace your destiny.

“I want one moment in time

When I’m more than I thought I could be

When all of my dreams are a heartbeat away

And the answers are all up to me

Give me one moment in time

When I’m racing with destiny

Then in that one moment of time

I will feel

I will feel eternity”

I will feel eternity…

In that one moment of time…

MEID

Nes in daai dae – die dae toe my ma haar moes afsloop aan wittes om my en my broer ‘n lewe te gee wat sy nooit kon gehad het nie – bedien ek nou ook die Heiliges van Apartheid. Elke oggend staan ek op voor die son sy glimlag op die duistere horison kan lê, om betyds te wees vir die taxi wat sesuur by die stop wag. Vyf voor agt klop ek aan die Baas se voordeur. My skof begin agtuur. Ek verneder myself deur om daai domestic worker-uitrusting te dra – daardie een met die groen en geel blommetjies; jy ken hom, mens koop dit by Checkers vir 99. “Ja Baas” wys ek respek aan hom wat my diligeer asof ek dankbaar moet wees. “Ja Miesies” knik ek vir die ma’am wat my uittrap oor die werk wat ek die vorige keer afgeskeep het. “Maria, jy is nog nie klaar met die wasgoed nie. Hoekom nie? Dit is nie so moeilik om die goed in die masjien te sit nie.” Die Miesies se oë val op ‘n hopie stof in die hoekie van die sitkamer. “Kyk hoe half maak jy skoon.” Ek knik, instemmend, want dit is wat die norm beaam.

Ek wys respek vir die witte, maar dan word ek soos die kind behandel: moet gesien word, maar nie gehoor word nie. Dit is so. Ek sal die mat stofsuig, en dan sal hulle in die kamer gaan sit en niks doen, nee ek mag nie sê niks doen nie. As ek klaar is sal hulle ‘n ogie kom gooi met naaldwerk, die Miesies brei deesdae. Ek hang die wasgoed op. Hulle dra baie klere. En net voor ek die agterdeur oopmaak, hoor ek hulle praat. Ek bly buite, wil hulle nie steur nie. “Sy werk alweer half vandag. Sy het dit ook laasweek gedoen. Ek kan nie meer nie.” Die Miesies se stem is kwaai.

Ek dink na aan wat die Miesies gesê het, toe ek op die taxi terug huis toe ry. Hoekom kan sy nie die werk doen nie? Sy is lui. Ek weet daar is mense wat werk en so, maar sy werk nie, brei net die heeldag. Jy moet hulle huis sien. Groot, morsig en vuil. Ek moet alles doen. Die Miesies weet nie eers hoe werk die masjien nie. Sê vir my dit vat nie so lank om die goed in die masjien te sit nie, hoekom doen sy dit nie? Want die wittes is privilegded, nie almal nie, maar hulle is. Ek hoor wat hulle sê. Die swartes wil nie werk nie, soek net. Ja, ons soek net – ons soek net ‘n lewe waar die wittes vir die swartes as maid sal werk – dit is mos gelykheid, né? Ag, die politics.

Ek is ‘n meid. So sê die witte Baas vir wie ek werk.

Geskryf deur Melissa van Eeden

2am-VERLANGE

Ons woorde het verdamp tot ondraaglike stiltes wat begin skree (soos ‘n baba met koliek) in die vroegoggendure waar ek alleen in my bed lê en jy alleen in joune. Die maan hang steeds aan ‘n toutje in die hemelruim met verskietende sterre wat oor sy wange drup. Dit is twee-uur en ek wonder of jy ook nou deur jou kamervenster kyk op soek na antwoorde in die sterre. Sou ons oë mekaar in dieselfde blik op ‘n ster ontmoet? Ek glo nie, want indien my oë skelm na jou draai en per ongeluk jou bruin oë ontmoet, bars ‘n ongemaklikheid oor ons en voel ek en jy verleë. Ek vind antwoorde in musiek, alhoewel dit nie die antwoorde is waarna ek gesoek het nie. Ek karoake op Taylor Swift – hoop dat die lewe tog ‘n movie is soos sy ook wens “but if this was a movie you’d be here by now/It’s not the kind of ending you wanna see now”. Ek kan nie slaap nie. Jou woorde speel soos ‘n gramofoonplaat wat vasgehak het, oor en oor in my gedagtes. Jy blyk onskuldig en verward oor hoe vinnig ‘n onskuldige gesprek tot die einde van ons “vriendskap?” (of wat ook al jy dit noem) kon lei. Ek lê nou alleen met ‘n leë plek langs aan my, ‘n holte waar jy altyd gelê het. My lakens ruik nog soos jy. Ek sal dit oor en oor moet was om daardie naskeermiddel wat jy gebruik het, uit te was. Die kussing waarop jy geslaap het, besit al jou drome wat jy snags opgetower het. Ek het twee koppies koffie vanoggend in my moegheid gemaak – wie gaan die ander een drink? Ek mis jou, maar ek sal dit nie hardop erken nie. Ek was verslaaf aan jou, aan die gevoel wat jy vir my gegee het as jou hand liggies en subtiel aan myne raak en jou skaam skewe glimlag wat jou gesig laat ophelder het. Ek mis ons gesprekke tot drie-uur die oggend waar ons oor alles en niks kon praat. Nou sit ek alleen met my gedagtes, jou woorde en ‘n spook wat my hart om middernag kom wakker klop met skuldgevoel en hartseer, met gebrokenheid oor wat nie meer is nie of wat nooit werklik was nie. Agter ons woorde het geheime geskuil wat ons nie wou openbaar nie. In ons oë kon die waarheid nooit asemhaal nie, omdat ons getinte vensters gehad het om ons siele te beskerm teen verwerping. My foon vibreer en klink op teen die nag se stiltes. Ek wens dit was ‘n boodskap van jou. [eks jamer] jou spelfoute het my nog altyd geïrriteer. Wees bly, jy is nou ontslae daarvan. Dan hoekom mis ek dit, mis ek om jou foute uit te wys en reg te maak? Trane rol uit die gleufies van my oë en klou aan my wange vas. Het ek ‘n fout begaan?

My gedagtes vlug hier vandaan, loop kaalvoet op die teerpad, gooi duim by die verkeerslig. Kan iemand asseblief my optel en my neem waar dit nie meer sal seermaak nie. Ek skribbel halwe woorde in my notaboek. Gedigte skets my hart, my gemoed, my gedagtes. Jy is in almal van hulle. Die hoofletter waarmee die gedig begin en die punt waarmee die gedig tot ‘n einde kom. Jy is die vrye vers waarmee ek myself vasketting aan sorgelose struktuur. Jy is die paarrym wat my woorde laat rymdwang [in die skemer skuil jy agter kakiebos/skryf ek steeds briewe wat ek nooit pos] My woorde maak nie veel sin nie.

Dit is 2:59.

geskryf deur Melissa van Eeden

SELFIE

 

AFRIKAANS :
Ek loer met my hande gebak om my oë, deur die venster en sien hoe jy daar by tafel sit met ‘n iPhone in jou hand. Jy tik idees, aanhalings en notas vir jou volgende selfie-post. Filosofies. Uit die boks. Nee, vee ‘uit die boks’ uit – skryf liewer geen boks – no limits (behalwe as dit by drank kom). Jy druk die kamera-toep. Pout. In gedagte. Kyk in die kamera. Fokus. Sit ‘n hoed op. Sit sonbrille op. Lyk cool. Swag. Moenie smile nie. Smile is so laas dekade. Edit die selfies met beautifier. Sit ‘n filter op – black and white, sutro, 1920’s. Caption this. Hashtags. Post dit op Instagram. Wag vir die notifications – Xander98 just liked your photo. Sukses bloei na die hoeveelste notification – jou selfie van ‘n man(vrou) wat smag na die aanvaarding van die samelewing en ‘n gevoel van lewe deur ‘n filosofiese aanhaling met ‘n gedokterde foto
was ‘n hit.

ENGLISH :
I peak through your window and see a man sitting at the table with an iPhone in his hand. You type ideas, quotes and notes for your next selfie post. Philosophical. Out of the box. No, rather no box – there is no limits. You click on the camera and a few moments later, your face appears to be the centre of attention. Pout. In thought. Stare into the camera. Focus. Put accerrosies on. Underline cool. Swag. Don’t smile. Smiling is so last decade. Edit the selfies with beautifier. Filter the images – black and white, sutro, 1920s. Caption this. Hashtags. Post it on Instagram. Wait for the first notifications – Xander98 just liked your photo. Success flourishes notification after notification, comment after comment – Your selfie of a man(woman) who tastes after the acceptance of society and a sense of life through a philosophical quote with a documented picture
was a hit.