School: A Trauma

This is to the teachers who put me on a pedestal
The only ‘justification’ they used bordered cultural and racial
This is to the classmates who sectioned off by sex
With girls to the right and boys to the left
This is to the headmasters who signed off on those papers
Took bribes from the parents of bullies and of haters
This is to the schools who employed psychos and sociopaths
Who used professional jargon and OCD to disguise narcissistic wrath

This is to my primary years when they used my childhood as role-model
Simply because of my efforts in becoming fluently bilingual
Only to have the second-language suppressed by dominant-race
Even though my native-tongue was one they could not embrace
They forced me to mimic their language and failed to educate
They could not teach etymology and when asked ‘why’ they couldn’t explain
Yet on paper they were marketed as highly-educated professionals
Though all they could do was emulate and copy-write outdated originals

This is to my secondary years when I finally learned about bullies
As it started from the head of school, then leaders, teachers, faculties
Colonial caucasians exploiting money from local families
Written off by those with smiles playing God as they stole society’s money
Then invested it in schools abroad and bought over those same brand names
Built capitalist institutions here and confused ‘school’ with ‘money to be made’
They enforced this competition on the innocence of youth
And when students refused to cater then we were mentally abused

Tip of the ice-berg, it gets worse, so read on if you dare
And don’t say I didn’t warn you — I did my part to care
Nonetheless if you must continue then be braced for the truth
Of what actually happened all those years in an atrocity of a school
That was sold on the premise that the highest-paying students would succeed
But it’s twenty-plus years of debt and scars that till this day still bleed
Parents sold their properties and skipped meals for their kids
Just to get them an enrollment that was later listed for bids

Corporate debentures per student is six times the annual salary
Of an average working-class resident who’s trying to raise a family
But those debentures are returned for it is money from the company
Whereas personal debentures are what bureaucrats use for their own properties
So to the parents of that school who never got what was paid for
I’m sorry to say but you were all ripped off by a school charging more
Than the typical secular international schools that are actually known globally
And not just recognized by one curriculum in one far-off remote country

Now we’d love to keep this civil and not make it a national issue
Unfortunately The School crossed that line when they stole cultural values
Warped it into an institution that they disguised with fake theology
Not the real experience of God or Christ, not even the Trinity
All they did was find a translation of whichever colonial edition
Worked into a white-male patriarchy that exploited this local system
None of the teachers even bothered learning to speak our languages
No, they just gave detention or punishment because THEY felt ignorant

When confronted on injustice by both students and parents
Then the teachers would kick up a fuss by whining and playing victim
Using a technique absolving them from all blame
But now that arrogance and classism is all over the school name
Alumni are still traumatized from homophobes and racists
Twenty-year-olds on anti-depressants trying to heal from such bullshit
Students are forced to listen to teachers ‘praying away the gay’
Then to ‘justify’ the homophobia they also discriminated gender and race

Till now, you still employ teachers, whose word-choice is so poor
That students couldn’t learn from them, our thesauruses taught us more
Teachers who were so small-minded that even eight-year-olds
Had more exposure and life experience than their indoctrinated hold
Your teachers asked minority students if parents were flight attendants
Your teachers did not critique the anti-semitism in Merchant of Venice 
Your teachers told us that ‘gay’ was a synonym for ‘stupid’ or ‘dumb’
Your teachers stood up for the bullies and constantly blamed the victims

It’s 2020 and you’re trying to rebuild amidst a global pandemic
Trying to recover your losses as if the only liability is economic
No, no, it doesn’t work that way, remember what you preached?
The notion of ‘loving money breeds evil’ is what you teach
Yet the moment teachers are asked to sacrifice and reduce their salaries
Then all hell breaks loose within the school then leaders raise the fees
All the while employing faculty who ‘claim’ the same philosophy
Of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, compassion, sacrifice, and of humility

Is any of that true for you or is that just your PR department
Writing on the website in order to acquire a pay-check?
If you call yourself a school then why are your teachers indoctrinated
By corruption, by colonialism, by caucasian expectation?
If you call yourself international then why do you only speak English?
Then ask students to expand yet serve detention for alternative language?
If you brand yourself on education then why has there been no change
In the experiences and memories of countless students who’ve left that place?

You, old school, are founded on nothing but lies
Painting your walls and buildings as if Prince of Darkness can be disguised
Then buying ideas from nations where you have never even been
Paraphrasing ideals from people you’d never make an effort to meet
You sit there in your glass office so insecure you need security
But if you’ve done nothing wrong then why install CCTVs?
Or do you think you’re so valuable that people would rob you?
Sorry to state the obvious but even thieves deem you no value

You’ve got multiple departments who are paid to grow your accounts
As the lawsuits and liabilities left you with unpayable amounts
All hidden behind the smiles of students you exploit
Families you manipulate in order to enjoy
The popularity and fame that was founded on lies and hate
On the pains of all who built your brand so you and your teachers could procreate
So employees could marry and populate an already over-populated city
All the while imposing such values on continuously-struggling families

You’re so far gone from discipleship that you’ve worded it as ‘followers’
Etching and engraving names of capitalistic corporate investors
Placing trophies, certificates, achievements on your walls and on your shelves
As if you’re building a seminary, not school, forgetting your God only had twelve
Twelve disciples completely committed to ensuring love, truth, justice
But your teachers got so caught up ‘in love’ they engaged in dysfunctional romance
You’ve all lost sight and ignore the truth just to stay ‘in love’
Then deflect using colonial theology saying ‘God’s given more than enough’

That same colonial theology that is misinterpreted by pharisees
Whose lives and lifestyles and choices they make are pure hypocrisy
You claim to follow a trinity who was made human and walked around in rags
Who spent more time in pubs and brothels having dialogues, not shags
Then you yourself dress up in Channel or Dior and even approve of H&M
Even though the theology you preach goes against such exploitation
So here we all are, wondering, do you actually know your theology
Or was that just interpreted with synonyms so you’d get a moment on TV?

Do you, as a multi-cultural international school, accept students from all classes and cultures?
Or do you view students of other religion and income as ‘contaminated vultures’?
Are you taking money from the same people you shun and call it a ‘conversion’?
And aside from converting currencies did you also convert the conversation?
Did you walk away from the fundamental truth that Christ is a spirit, not a person?
That God is the extroverted quality and introverted Jesus came as human?
Have you ever learned to read other languages, philosophies, or religions?
Or did you take advantage of Grace and Mercy to avoid rather than fight your demons?

Have you forgotten that in an international school there are people from other countries
Who speak multiple languages and bring values from different cultures
Whose families and ancestry likely have much history
Histories more vast, much deeper than your country’s
So please, just quit your ignorance and stop selling naivety
Even your white-washed theology intercepted the nativity
Your curricula is already scrutinized for suppressing the indigenous
And at present in 2020 you do the same to this city’s natives

So if you’ve any dignity and even a shred of integrity
Then you’d know your hands are tied so why do you insist on trying to lead?
How can you guide (y)o(u)r lead ‘da’ ship into righteousness, away from all this competition?
What moral compass misguided your direction and set your sails against God’s winds?
For years you’ve sought and leaders have come but were only faced with rejection
Because you were not ready to face the battles against your Satanic demons
So you employed only those who spoke your language but knew nothing of oppression
You didn’t even realize that you literally just translated an existing system

The irony in all this is that the school was worried about student depression
When it already had our sympathy and pity for whoever justified its discrimination
Teachers thought they cared about children but really used us as deflections
Unwilling to get therapy for teachers, the school just put students on medication
Essentially, those teachers have little concern for learners’ education
If anything, they’re more influenced by ‘conversion’ and ‘eradication’
For some egotistic reason they truly ‘believe’ that they’re so different
As if they’re the only institution selling outdated white-evangelism

You and them stood on stage singing “Break every Chain”
Well, y’all broke your chain of command, mate
You broke the chain that bound you to Christ
Then ran off into the dark of the night
You took your own vision out of your mission
And instead building students you focused on building pensions
The moment your heart, souls, and minds made that flip
Well… that’s exactly when it all began to slip

See, “Blessed are the persecuted” does not mean “persecute in order to bless”
Nor is “do unto others as you’d have them do” a reflection of karmic process
You even misconstrued “fear” for “respect” when it’s “respect of God” and not “fear”
Because perfect Love casts out all insecurity so why are you so scared?
God is the Head does not mean Man is the head, for God is an ungendered spiritual entity
Christ is an experience and experiences can’t be forced, yet your school is now a seminary
So can you please rethink and reassess what you sell because you’ve no right to preach
You’re not Jesus nor do you’ve theological licensing so… stick to your M.Ed and. just. teach.

 

MG

Inequality

How does one write
rather how does one type
on a stereotype
in the form of a hype
trendsetters surround
generating sounds
flooding all around
coming from outta town
now I don’t mean immigrants
I’m talkin ‘bout expats n’ tourists
with commercial interest
bearing the label “capitalist”

The few who were impressed
returned to invest
at the materialist’s bequest
a thirst that can’t be quenched

see the downside to this notion
that they term “capitalism”
is the constant hunger for more
for meagre life’s a chore
a need to compensate
with objects on their plates
that constantly seek upgrade
and engage in debate
about the technological change
about foreign stock exchange
about our nuclear weapons’ range
the ones blasted up on stage
the faces of diplomats
glorified doormats
they might have nicer habitats
but still use the same laundromats

Speeches are drafted and read
edited before they’re said
don’t want the people to be misled
rephrase the lies they spread
yet e’ryday People get out of bed
are drawn to the metaphorical Red
log on to hot topics n’ threads
to catch up with the trend
but on the other end
there are beggars who can’t pay rent
their problems aren’t concerning where their right to vote went
but surviving on less than a tenth
of the income most of us get
and let ourselves forget
the roots from which we were bred

 

MG

 

 

(freeverse / spoken word — July 2019)

Social Darwinism – Video

Finally managed to record this. It’s not perfect but you get the gist. Enjoy!

The Change

This story is inspired by Huxley’s Brave New World and Sid Meier’s Civilization V: Brave New World. 

He swung his rucksack over his shoulder and pulled the door shut behind him as he left the house, once again ready to fly solo into the battlefield. It was an average sunny morning with nothing new except his thoughts and theories which consumed him faster than the speed of light. All geared up with his knives and a crossbow, he skipped down the stairs, realising that the agonising discipline he had endured for the past decade was finally coming into play. He’d never understood why he’d been put through combat training, until about a year ago…

It was late July, halfway into the summer, that he was navigating around various city-states in his surrounding area. In this age of technology, though, his exploration was mostly conducted by travelling through cyberspace. He would navigate from state to state, find the most feasible settling point, and experiment by scouting around the boarders. For months, he had established Influence over certain city-states and civilisations, but it wasn’t until November that he had stumbled upon a civilisation that fully encompassed the types of battles for which he was trained.

In months, he had created a weapon that could ultimately destroy a civilisation of Megalopolises; a weapon that would break through the defense of Superficiality and thus expose and attack flaccidity of the archenemy both as an entity and as individuals. The downside, however, was that his weapon also unmasked his own weaknesses, and he needed to reconstruct a certain set of defenses accordingly. However, as he had allied with a small but strong Civilisation, he ended up investing most of his energy into fueling the weapon and hadn’t quite strengthened his defenses, so just over half a year later, when the Megalopolis decided to unite and declare war against this Civilisation, it was hardly a secret that his stronghold came crashing down, leaving fragments of debris on everything he touched.

With each battle, he felt weakened and defeated. But what his enemies didn’t know is that each scar they inflicted only fueled the fire and passion it took to take down this flawed and corrupt system. Two months after the initial battle, he decided to coalesce with the Army General to enhance the pre-existing weapon and defend it with double the aegis. They devised a strategy that was everything he had hoped, months ago, to enforce, but given the fact that the weapon was still in its phase of refurbishment, he decided that it was still too early in the game to bring out the big guns and fire the ultimatum. Instead, the Army decided it best to ultilise the information uncovered by their diplomats to administer alternate methods.

Finally, after three and a half months of provocation and warfare, he felt ready to save the society from falling down a swirling abyss of soon-to-be Betas of the Brave New World. The Civilisation had devised a strategy to conquer the boundaries of a backward society and catapult these Megalopolises into progressing in a universally sanctioned direction. Fueled with a passion that went both ways, he was fully equipped to train certain Melee units to defend their assets and enhance the skills they had already developed, but also to take on the antagonistic opposition from Greater Civilisations.

Each Melee Unit he was handed to train was equipped with their own set of weapons, and it was his job to cultivate these units into armies that could handle the Great Battle which was yet to come. These little battles that were coming his way at a rapidly unexpected pace were merely his next level of training, which is why he understood the importance of training his Melee Units as rigorously as possible.

The Great Battle was one he knew he was definitely not ready to face yet: What happens when his Melee Units reach their Age of Enlightenment and besiege the Megalopolis? How hard will the Megalopolis fight back then? Somehow though, his reassurance lay in the fact that they knew how to strategise around these impediments, which is why he allowed himself to sustain a few broken bones and scratches here and there: he knew they would grow back stronger, and that he would be able to take on the Ultimate Battle when it stares him in the face. For now, he just has to go on training his Units, and defend their Freedom without the Megalopolis trying to eradicate it. Being one of the few Civilisations in the Information Era, he knew he would have to wait a long time until his Melee Units moved out of the Industrial Era. That, or he needed to find a new method of combat training.

With every demonstration during the training sessions, his Melee Units felt threatened and weakened, but they didn’t yet understand that this was his way of strengthening them. They didn’t understand that the only way to grow was to conquer the existing Challenges before they could be upgraded to a stronger Unit. After three months of battling and Melee Training, he had finally come to discover that although his armies were equipped with tons of state-of-the-art weaponry, none of them had been trained to actually use any of it, so in the first few sessions when he asked them to try to use it, they all ended up shooting themselves in the foot or poking an eye out one way or another.

In his mind palace, he realised that these armies would take much more training that he had anticipated, which was surprising considering how modern their military technology and weaponry supplies were. He knew what had to be done, and knew what the ultimate goal was, but as for how to win the battle, well first, he had to decided which ones were worth the fight. But he knew. He knew that the Ultimate Battle, or the Great Battle, would only be fought when he had enough Flight Units to intercept the opposition. And for now, he would continue with his various forms of research that would provide substance and options for stronger weapons and more fine-tuned training tools to cater to the unpredicted needs of units that have been bred but not trained. He was tired of seeing his government funding the nation’s military but not actually training the army to use the tools, and considering the fact that this Megalopolis was considered to be one of the most advanced Civilisations in the whole world, his jaw dropped when he discovered that one of his Units whom he had trained for a sheer 9-month period had more common sense than the entire government. They were living proof that his expectations for the Units were not irrational or impractical, and though he may be somewhat idealistic at times, each losing battle only drove his cynicism, which in turn nourished his Strength.

And although he was very well trained and equipped to attack and dominate, the Civilisation didn’t feel that he was ready to be put on the frontlines yet. Instead, they were training his defenses and setting up the battlefield, so that when they did unleash his Ultimatum, it would act like an abstract Apache AH-64 trained to only shoot down Enemy Thoughts but keep the civilians and their Freedom safe. Tough and heart-wrenching as the process sometimes was, he promised himself that he would live to see the day when the Change took place. When the Change he had spent a decade trying to implement happens, he would be on the frontlines with a PHASR rifle to blind and suspend Enemy Thoughts, and an MAARS to launch grenades of Liberated Knowledge which his Melee Units will use to defend their Liberated Minds. So for now, no matter how much damage he undergoes, as long as he has his moments to fortify and heal, he will live to be there when The Change happens, and he would sacrifice his reputation to achieve the ultimate goal of breaking through the Stereotypes and Traditionalism of a conservative, unenlightened and ignorant Megalopolis.

Until then, he wasn’t fighting alone, and besides his immediate allies, he had, within his mind palace, the defenses of Machiavelli, Huxley, Kafka, Sartre, Hobbes, Rousseau, Thoreau and Kant. For now, he told himself 8 words:

頂天立地
永不放棄

Social Darwinism

“Of all the problems which will have to be faced in the future, in my opinion,
the most difficult will be those concerning the treatment of the inferior races of mankind.”
~Leonard Darwin~

 

Used to be ignorant bout the hip hop culture
Lyrics in clubs ’bout men acting like vultures
Rapaciously finding a chick to divulge her
Never stopped to think that maybe he’d convulsed her
The irony of it all is that I did just the same
New to the scene? Be a playa in the game
Running crazed and wild, impossible to tame
Got that notorious rep, so-called social fame
Never was a fan of monogamy
“Misogyny” they call it but I disagree
Fundamentalists coin the term “sodomy”
Definitions are subjective, the lines are blurry
But hearing new lyrics with deeper meaning
Not all this bullshit ’bout sex and cheating
Rap is the new method of teaching
Theories of how the system’s dealing
With social injustice – innocents busted
Failed by the system they defencelessly trusted
Education gave hope then the government crushed it
Catering to elitists, their money’s their sustenance
Six decades of developing racial equality
Then enters the new wave of sexuality
But classism, Marxism, social mortality
Watching it lose to immorality (or “watching it incept social reality”)
Racial equality, elusive at best
They call me deluded, saying “give it a rest”
Everyone wants liberty, and yet
It’s colonial history, not f***ing progress
No one really tries to sort out this mess
It ain’t on the surface: underlying distress
Religion embraces it as “God’s test”
Saying “just face it, consider yourself blessed.”
A passion fuelled by harboured resentment
Towards masking the truth with falsified presentment
Then covering lies with a monetary blanket
Proves accuracy of philosophies ancient
Turmoil of our world leaves nothing mundane
Even if the surface drives you insane
Strategic moves in this societal game
Fraternising with the enemy chain
Disenfranchising their right to remain
In positions of power only ever abused
Taste their own medicine – let them be accused
Of misuse, excuse, being abstruse and obtuse

If these words you can’t even comprehend
Then maybe it’s about time that you descend
From that point of authority – absolute majority
Make those sacrifices you promised the minorities
Equality in wage, race, gender and policy
Here’s an idea: sort out your priorities

Everything I rant about y’all know what I’m like
Soon as I’m inspired all I do is write
My sanctimonious version of what’s wrong and right
To ignorant asses who’re societally blind
Treating us like we’re just a f***ing statistic
Brutality through corruption – it’s capitalistic
Don’t tell me that my words here are uncharacteristic
There’d be no need for them if had decent heuristics
They tell me what I’m writing is plain narcissistic
Idealistic, unrealistic, and pure antagonistic
But that ain’t f***ing true, go learn your linguistics
It’s unspoken truths – I’m cynically pessimistic
Socialistic, journalistic, some say pantheistic
All it comes down to a world so hedonistic
Consumed by whatever you call materialistic
I ain’t here to preach but I just wanna speak it
Get it all out there: it’s called expressionistic
So don’t tell me that I’m being impressionistic
So it renders these thoughts just floating around
The only way I can drown out the the sounds
Of these speculations and deep meditation
Are the method of writing these outcries down
Manifestation of thoughts into reality
Turning conjecture into actuality
Finding the links and commonalities
While assimilating to so-called municipality
The abstracts of life – pure supposition
Molecules and atoms of human disposition
At wit’s end trying to make decisions
Concretising everything ever envisioned
Knowingly constructing a palatial realm
Engulfed by a subconscious impossible to helm
Unspoken truths emerge – we’re overwhelmed
Defying reality, in our essence we whelm
Back and forth with rationalisations
Escaping to a world they call “Imagination”
A utopian reality of our own creation
Releasing and deposing all frustration
Inner voices just bounce around and echo
Off the walls of our mind palaces, labyrinths, chateau
Teachings of Hobbes, Marx, Kant and Rousseau
Camus, Sartre, Machiavelli, Thoreau
Zealots of the past inspiring insurgence Revolutionising reality as innovation emerges
As particles of both worlds inevitably converge
You do what you can till the storms disperse

If these words you can’t even comprehend
Then maybe it’s about time that you descend
From that point of authority – absolute majority
Make those sacrifices you promised the minorities
Equality in wage, race, gender and policy
Here’s an idea: sort out your priorities.

Mikaela Gordan, 2014