The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive

March 14, 2002


Berda'awat, biar-lah hitam; mandi, biar-lah basah.

If you get inked, get black; if you bathe, get wet.

(Malay proverb, from Winstedt, A Simple Malay Reader)

If you write, write to the fullest; if you burn, conflagrate; if you swim,
dive. If you get inked, get black: write into the maelstrom, conflagrate.
If you bathe, breathe, get wet, drown; if you drink, drown; if you write,
write down with bodies floating in the stream of stories. If you drown,
you drown; if you write, you're written. Write and you drown; if you get
ink, your lungs fill with darkness: black ink, and you get black.


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