Thursday, January 7, 2010


Sir Frank Swettenham (Residen Jeneral pertama Negeri-negeri Melayu Bersekutu, 1896-1901) ada menerima puisi tentang Malayan Union daripada seorang lelaki Melayu bernama Abdul Hamid Amin. Dia tinggal di kawasan pedalaman Malay Peninsular (Semenanjung Tanah Melayu) dan merupakan saudara kepada pembesar di negerinya. Puisi ini dikirimkan semula dari London kepada editor The Straits Times. Inilah pertama kalinya, sejak akhbar itu diterbitkan, ia menyiarkan puisi dalam Bahasa Inggeris oleh seorang yang berbangsa Melayu.

What is sauce to the goose is sauce to the gander,
Why feign ignorance, irritation and wonder,
Another your house pillage and plunder,
How would you feel my noble pretender!

The Nile is white and the Indus is brown,
If the one can hate the other can frown,
Man after all is merely a clown,
If his conscience has persists to drown.

Empires may come and empires may go,
But mankind on the appreciated upon will go,
Evil may come and good may go,
What do you take on the last journey you go?

Talk or justice in the market I hear,
Or the lack of it in many places they fear,
But what is justice after all, my master dear,
It's helping yourself if the coast is clear!

You and I were gone for a stroll,
And in the hut (palace) some relic regalia we stole,
You the judge and I the catchpole,
What a time for that other poor soul!

We scold the Nazis for misdeeds unspeakable,
And consider some others alike culpable,
For disregarding covenants sacred and indelible,
And inhumane acts heinous and despicable!

I cannot rebuke you for having an opinion,
Or you me for my humble opinion,
But in that game called the Malayan Union,
The active are out the slow to pinion!

Ah! when the losers with ropes are tied,
Blinking in the sun parched and dried,
The winners victorious and puffed with pride,
Jump on their shoulders for a joyous home ride!

I for one won't care for such a game,
Being weak I am sure to go lame,
Whatever others may say preach or proclaim,
I can conjure nothing but discomfort and blame!

Wherefore let those who invented this tedious pastime,
Leave us alone with the pre-war regime,
So that we who are unwinded can take our time,
And choose a game suitable to our clime.

If you take the bun, leave us the crust,
And if the gold spare us the dust,
But pray, why relieve us of our father's trust,
Albeit Oh God! In Thee we trust.

by Abdul Hamid Amin
Dipetik drpd :The Straits Times (bertarikh 9 Julai 1946)
Lukisan : John Singer Sargent
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