"Ayu from Spoken-Word"

Dear Folks,

If you notice that I have made a cleaner transformation to my blog, it is because I have bought a domain! I have hope to launch another website soon.  It is not only for personal use, but also holds my professional credentials. But I hate formal, so the website is going to be fun!

It has been a month full of poetry. After Unmasked, I was invited to come and read my piece at Nulisbuku event. The following week I was set to teach with BelajarBareng. Suddenly, I feel like I am on a mission to introduce spoken-word to our culture.

"It is Ayu from Spoken-Word"

Picture courtesy of NulisBuku Twitter

This is how everybody introduces me. This is how everybody knows me. But to make it clear, I am not from "Spoken-Word" because Spoken-Word is not a community or a literary gang or a book club, spoken-word is a genre and I guess it is my duty, and other spoken-word poet duty to set this clear.

I also do not feel entitled to the word 'spoken-word poet', because I am still a learner, a beginner, a student. I haven't yet to publish my poetry book. I am still far from the word 'poet' so, being introduced as Ayu from 'spoken-word' gives a contrary effect as to being flattered. But anyway, I still thank everyone who appreciates this form of arts and is willing to see me perform and introduce spoken-word in my capability.

We are still working on it. I am still working to establish myself as to what kind of writer I am. I know every effort, opportunity and chance I have taken is not going to be a waste.

OUTSPOKEN : My first workshop teaching experience

I have had my first spoken-word workshop back in 2014. It was hosted by Jamal Raslan, Melizarani and Will Beale. They are all good friends of mine and talented poets. I was happy and honored to find out that the murmur house and BelajarBareng would collaborate together. They asked the murmur house to make a workshop or teaching session. The murmur girls had asked me to host a session. It sounds crazy, but I took the challenge. Melicia, who is also in the murmur house and a talented spoken-word enthusiast, joined me. Thank God! Because I was not that confident to appear on my own.

The community BelajarBareng was established last year from ask.fm. The audience? Are the kids from ask.fm. Okay, when I heard the word "ask.fm" my mind quickly identify "hipsters." Maybe if I was born 10 years later, and that means I will be 13 years old now, I would totally be in ask.fm and answer some questions from strangers so I can feel important.
The objective of BelajarBareng is to let these ask.fm kids meet and mingle in the offline world rather than just bully each other online, which is great!

I have a rebellious teenage cousin who is an internet sensation now and it is easy to cringe and point, 'what he wants to do in the future?' or say 'oh, poor kid, if he keeps acting like that, he will got no future.' I hate judgment. These teenagers need a platform of expression. I mean who are we to judge someone else's future? Unless we are an ignorant, close-minded person who feels good when they see themselves doing better than most of others. 

I used to be a 'clean-cut' kid. I barely had boyfriends nor social life; my goal was so pristine: to get a good grade and get a good job. But look at me now, jumping from one temporary job to another, plus poetry and arts in between. No one knows what the future is like. Who knows, that punk kid is going to Hollywood someday.

Anyway,  I am getting slightly out of topic...

I am saying that what BelajarBareng had done it is great. And that was my first-time teaching spoken-word so I was nervous. We had a short time to pull this off, but I guess we have met the objectives, which is to introduce the kind of spoken-word and explain the spoken-word fever to them and had them performed and read their poems.

Masih banyak yang malu-malu. Some of them were shy, even refuse to write poems. I was getting worried if we have failed to build the excitement. But me and Mel tried our best to live up the vibe, and we think we were doing good. 

But I remember several solid poems that have potential
- A letter to Daenerys Taegeryen. by that guy I kept calling Rizky, but he is not Rizky, but I want to call you Rizky because you look like Rizky to me #eh 
- Justice. by Farhan
- Duet Poem. by Madina and Rin. We have duet poem!
- Untitled. by Sony who mixed Bahasa Indonesia and English like a baws! Sony and his band have soundcloud
and many others... 

I am surprised that these kids are pretty young and they are willing to know more about poetry and creative writing exercise. I am happy that we can create platforms to channel their expression.

My passion in writing starts very young, but then it was going nowhere because I did not explore it until I graduated from university and started my professional year. Oddly to say, maybe it is because I am more independent (?!) and there is no peer pressure when you start your professional years. 

Maybe there is, people are not gonna stop judging or maybe it gets worse. However, the pressure is different from what you had in school/college. In the early year of adulthood, you start to spend times alone. You do not have your clique and gang. It is the happiest time, you can travel, do stuff and meet more awesome people, that aren't your college friends. It can be all-time low or all-time high, depends on you see it.

So if you are in the tender years of your passion, please pursue it. I have met many young writers who are doing well and even better. Do not ever stop. I believe if you follow your passion, everything else will follow... and I am on my way to prove that too.


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