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Though all they could do was emulate and copy-write outdated originals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

Layers — [collaborative poetry]

Layers is old, layers is new
Layers is a wish or a dream come true

Layer upon layer of sun rays reign
Upon layers and layers of fields thirsting for rain

Removing a layer, atmospheric bliss
Adding a layer, attachments to the old, reminisce

Attachments overlap as layers envelop such bliss
Enamored as its embrace intertwines the intricate

Days to months and months to years
Feeling weak while boldly blooming, the retraction ever so near

Months roll into years into decades into centuries
Time is in essence layers of existence

While the layers unravel into the heart of the known
Sensational timing within a timeless sensation grows unknown

Mysteries of layers unfurl
Enigmas of galaxies within one world

Layered over layered dust,  created from dirt
Layers merge and emerge as beauty blooms from the earth

 

Ses and MG

 

 

(click here for link to Ses’ profile)

 

 

collaborative poetry for Mental Health Awareness Month (June)

 

 

The End Is Only The Beginning

You left in haste
Without a trace
Which probably explains why
It’s taken a while

To learn to love again
To learn to be a friend
To learn to value you
To learn to embrace the new
You were wonderful, Skye, yes you were
For the longest time you were my only world
The only person who held the key
To uncovering my mysteries
But now, my dear, I have discovered
Other entrances hidden under rubble
Under the debris of our earthquake
When you brought down the worlds we made
I have sifted, oh, how I have searched
Through sand, and ash, lye and dirt
At first, of course I was looking for you
But over time the search was subdued
The reality soon faded into a memory
And present times became history
When all’s said and done, where will you be?
While all’s left standing is… me

I’ve found another entrance dear, one you didn’t know
Buried far beneath ice and a thousand layers of snow
It took a long time to find it, time, heat and friction
Laid under slates encoded with alien diction
Then I looked closely at the engravings
There were patterns perplexing and penetrating
Right to the core of all dissent
Of dissonance, of regret, and resentment
The code was the final key I needed
To blast through the ice that melts and refreezes
To access the entrance to a cave of mystery
Unencumbered selves, shattered in pieces
I’d put them back together in time
With cracks so perfect, lines so fine
Formulating a new me, me dear
Rising from the ashes, the fire I feared
But fear does not become me anymore, Skye
It does not hover as a shadow by my side
I have seen the light at the end of the road
And I’m ready, now, to free-fall into the unknown…

MG

(Excerpt from Dear Skye by Mikaela Gordan. Originally posted on Wattpad. Click for link.)

Couldn’t, Shouldn’t, Wouldn’t

Here’s to all who’ve ever said that I couldn’t, shouldn’t, and wouldn’t (and meant it).

To those who said I couldn’t, I appreciate the projections of self-doubt you placed upon me. You’ve taught me what it looks like to pass on insecurities that were instilled in your childhoods. From you, I’ve learned not to stunt people’s growth, you’ve taught me not to constrain them into walls, boxes, or categories.

To those who said I shouldn’t, I sincerely appreciate the caution and concern. There are some of you whose warnings I did heed, and for my own sake too: you were saving me from myself. But to those who were self-centered and not self-experienced in this regard, I appreciate how blatant you were about the lack of effort you were willing to make for me. It made it easier to gauge how much I’d exert.

To those who said I wouldn’t, it was always for one of two reasons. One, you thought my ideas too farfetched and overreached, didn’t believe that I would come up with a way to make it happen. You projected your insecurity onto me, and only challenged my intelligence to see if I’d push. The arrogance in me caved, at one point — always had to be right. Always had to have an answer for everything. I’ve learned, now, that when you properly define the problem and get to the root of it, the solution presents itself.

Second reason would be that you did believe I could come up with a method, but also that you could foresee better than I could how much effort it would truly take to convert certain dreams into reality. Thank you for humbling me, and keeping me grounded when I flew too close to the sun. Thank you for allowing me to soar, but not to get burned.

All of you, lovers and haters, makers and breakers, you’ve inspired me to be authentically me. I got caught up in the mixes of each and everyone’s insecurities, the empathy in me went mad with apathy until eventually I just reached an overload and shut down. I’m sure many of you can relate to this, we’ve all been in it together. We’ve all been running around in the chaos just trying to survive, figuring a way out, a way in, a way forward, a way backward.

But what if…what if we just…embraced all of it. It’s not about changing, friends, it’s about expanding.

My darlings, I tell you this from the heart.

You’ve come this far, not just to get this far. I did, I do, and I will do, again and again and again until it gets better and better and better.

“It’s time to more than just survive. We were made to thrive.” (Mark Hall)

Grow, expand.
Don’t change.
Embrace.

It’s less about finding yourself,
more about letting yourself be found.
MG

Write Until…

Write until all that remains is love; Love always remains.

Write until the clouds shift, until the sun comes out to play. Write until there is no more anger, no more pain, no more fear, no more anxiety, no more excuses, no more boundaries. Write, and write, and write, until all that remains…is Love.

It’s explosive. Love is beautiful.

It’s all the good, the bad, the scary, the sad, wrapped up and bundled into a giant confusing package.

But amidst all the confusion and turmoil, there is that steadfast, security that sometimes feels like a literal rock. A rock that, no matter how hard it is pushed, the one pushing only ricochets because it is so much stronger than any human.

That rock, is Love.

Love itself is strong,  much stronger than humans are sometimes capable. Humans fall short of Love itself — if Love were to stand alone, it could be much like the Himalayas with ambivalent directions pointing left, right, centre, when all you had to do was keep going up; or deep as the Grand Canyon with a bunch of trampolines in case one does “accidentally fall in Love”.

But the journey to Love is sometimes treacherous; ask any adventurer or explorer. Getting stuck in potholes, sinking in quicksand; frost bite, rope burn, to name a few. It’s the journey that is the adventure. Love is free of cost, but not free of journey. It is not a state in which one can teleport; it is a “destination” that one reaches.

To a writer, writing is that journey. It is that path one writes, scribbling lines paving the way to the heart of a writer. It is the concoction of words concatenating the thoughts, the feels, the warm embraces. It is the bridges we cross and walk around in circles trying to find our ways around the place, trying to write out the steps to the destination.

Love heals.

To write, is to love.
To love, is to heal.
To write, is to heal to love.

Write until all that remains is love.

All. That. Remains.

Is love.

MG