Sunday Lipi | 19th issue | August, 2nd Week

Contributors

Change in Disguise

Change in Disguise

When the led is tired of their leaders
They agitate for change
But the change makes them beggars.

In those days when the sword ruled
The land mourns of their brutality
Their freedom of expressions had no room.

The problem of democracy
Came with its own psychocrazy
In disguise we practice democracy.

May I know the difference
Between the sword and the alágbádás
In their politique of defense?

The amalgam we all claimed,
The disguise for nepotism
In the distribution of political office aims.

May I know the bane of insurgency
When the Geopolitical zones are divided
Who supports insurgents’ supremacy?

How may he knows,
The jargons of shoot at sight
If not in the era of the sword’s woes?

If freedom of expression is banned
Of what significance is democracy
If not for the sword to get us panned.

The land is plundered
And cadaver filled the ground
While to death man is left to be chundered.

The herders ploughed with their cattle
They capture men for ransom
And their hideout turns into their castle.

The leaders left the led in agony
School children are not left out
Where do we get evidence for our harmony?

The change we all fight for,
The change they practise in disguise.

Trumpet of Destructions

Trumpet of Destructions

Pandemonium in the continent of humans!
Boisterous relationships among different races,
Replicas of HELL on earth everywhere.
Sadness on the shed of cold blood everywhere.
Hot deaths dominate everywhere.
Massive deaths of God’s peculiar creature every day.
Shiver of teeth and minds of humans every day.
Mysteries heard and sighted every day.
Yam-pepper scatter scatter world becomes every day.
Solutions of all these mischievousnesses
Above humans’ height;
A sign and sound of end time
Prophesied, the Holy Bible however.

Yin and Yang

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  • I want us to connect – a dark-skinned lover was whispering in her ear – to become inseparable like yin and yang.
  • I want it too – she whispered surrendering to his touching.

They didn’t know they were not alone.

In a hotel bedroom on a wardrobe there lurked an unable to be seen gnome. He lapped lasciviously. He’d been waiting so long for something like this, for a wish that would be said by both of them.

  • As you wish, it will happen – mumbled when drawing a magic sign with gnarled hand.

The lovers started to bend in strange angles. Screaming, crackling tendons, cracks of breaking bones. The plascisity of bodies. He intertwined them. Her head went through his stomach nad his through her’s. They were yin and yang now.

Achingliu Kamei

Achingliu Kamei

India | View Profile

PROPHECY OF THE ANCIENTS

Pic to go with story Lipi Weekly

There once lived an old man who could see into the far future. He prophesied that in the distant future there will be born a man who will sire a Liantuang in a village called Makuiluangdi. That was in the distant dim past where memories lived only in the minds of grandmothers and grandfathers. The villagers did not believe that this prophecy will come true. They had their doubts. The old man did not speak much and the way he did things was different from that of the others. Most of the villagers thought he was a little crazy. But for generations the womenfolk told their daughters of this prophecy as they work in their waist looms and as they pounded paddy. They wove the story into intricate and beautiful designs in their shawls. The gossamer yarns caught the whispers and locked it in their hearts. That was how some of the histories lived on in the shawls and clothes made by the women folk.

The womenfolk of many villages, especially the elderly, sang and narrated the prophecy from generation to generation. A little girl, called Sangailiu, asked her grandmother, “Why do you like so much to sing that song?”
“Because a Liantuang will be able to deliver us from the enemies. You see, a man with supernatural strength is called a Liantuang. He is so strong, he’ll be able to fight and defeat hundreds of people by himself. The enemy villages will be afraid of us. And most importantly, the mothers will stop shedding tears for lost sons,” replied her grandmother.
“But why are the mothers crying? Why will they stop crying when a Liantuang is born?” asked little Sangailiu.
“Stop asking too much, silly girl. Just do your work. Nobody will marry you if you are not a diligent worker!” scolded her grandmother. Little Sangailiu went back to her work. Her little deft hand picked up a sea heart and started to wound the yarn her grandmother spun out from the cotton. Little did Sangailiu know that she will one day be the mother of a Liantuang.

***

A heavily pregnant woman was working in her field alone. Her husband and relatives had gone to the neighbouring field to help round up an escaped bull. She was expecting her seventh child. She wished to have a daughter this time, for she had six sons already. She needed a girl to help her and her mother-in-law in the kitchen. She knew her time was near. She had sharpened the bamboo and kept it ready, in any eventuality. As she bent down to weed some more, she felt a sharp pain on one of her sides. She went down on her knees and hands on the ground, so sharp was the pain. She could smell the vines, the cucumbers and the pumpkin flowers on the ground. The flowers sang to her to be brave. The breeze brought her mother’s love. Whenever the soft breeze blew through her face, she remembered her mother when she was alive.

When the pain ebbed, she stood up gingerly. Then her water broke. She barely managed to reach the laupoh, the hut in the field. She took down the sharp bamboo blade, kept ready some water and laid down. When she wiped down the new-born with her piece of cloth, she could see a mark on his right side chest. A bluish mark. “Oh my son, one of the family forefathers have come back. Welcome back to the family,” murmured the woman.

Then she sang.
“Well, son, it is noon and you have chosen
You’ll go out in your peak
The spirits have asked, would you like to be trees, to be bear, to be tiger,
And you have chosen
The flowers danced, and the birds trilled to welcome you
At the river you’ll find a friend
At the bridge your ancients will rescue you
Drifting like drift wood you cannot
Life for the women had been hard, there had been no light
So, son, embrace your destiny
I see it all clear like the reflection on the green waters
If women’s wishes were like dandelion seeds
Thousand wishes would have been fulfilled.
The river spirit will guide and protect you
The forest will be your mother, may the herbs come floating to you.”
So singing, the woman chewed on chagoimei gah, gah jing, gah khuang
And spat it out around the child to protect it from malevolent spirits.

When the men got back, they heard a cat mewing, but it was a baby boy. Her husband took the placenta and buried it in the backside of the hut.

“Thank you kind spirits. I’m extremely glad I get to burry my son’s placenta.
Ancestors of my father, I bury this because my father was not here today.
Accept this and protect my son. May he love his land,” so saying, the father lowered down the placenta of his son in the tiny hole. He covered it with the moist soil. He instinctively knew that this son will love the forest. It was believed by the people of the land that they were loyal to their birth place because their placentas were buried there.

The grandfathers and uncles were ecstatic to welcome the seventh son, the first one in the village. Sons feed the elderly and brothers looked after the sisters. Before the ninth day, the baby was given a name by an elder of the clan. After the Muh, the priest sacrificed the blemish free rooster to the spirit, he pronounced the name.

“May he live long and healthy. May he be admired by many women. May he win wars. May he help the poor and the orphans. May he sire liantuangs for sons. He will be called Kadiganglung, one who is good for the land.”

“The name is good. May he lack no food.” Said one elder.
“May he be always successful in hunting, and may his father’s mouth never lack good food,” said another.
All gathered had something good to bless the child with.

The mother resting in the room thought, will he fulfil the prophecy? Is he going to be the father of Liantuang?
Before he was known as Liantuang’s father, he first was called by the villagers Kadiganglung.

Kadiganglung’s village was a rich village. They had a common granary where all the households in the village contributed paddy for rainy days and also so that they would have enough to lend others from nearby villages, should they come to ask. Some families even made do with rice porridge only for dinner sometimes to save up on food to have enough to give the needy. Every household, large and small had enough seed-grain to sow in the next season. It was very important for the villagers to follow tradition to continue to prosper.

Years went by and Kadiganglung grew up to be a fine boy. He was chosen by the Muh, the priest to be the Pheidoupou, the virgin boy who would plant the first seed before the planting season for the village. As soon as Meikhak heard about the decision of the Muh, he was filled with rage. A black cloud descended over his heart. He schemed and strategized when to hurt Kadiganglung. He felt he should have been the chosen one. The thought of using doiraeng, black magic had entered his mind, but he was afraid of approaching the practitioner. Also, if he was found out, his family would suffer greatly. Meikhak came to the conclusion that an ambush might be the best way. He shadowed Kadiganglung like a shadow of the night, waiting for an opportune moment to strike.
As usual, Kadiganglung went to the village water hole regularly to cleanse himself, leading up to the seed sowing ceremony. One day, he went with just his friend. Meikhak, with the skill and stealth of a tiger preying a hare, he stalked them, his best spear in hand. The sound of the forest and the rushing of water near the water hole drowned out other noises. Oblivious to what was about to happen, Kadiganglung and his friend were having their baths near the small waterfall. Meikhak rushed at them from behind. Just as he was about to spear, a huge rock from the cliff above hurtled down. As it hit the small pond, the water splashed, a gigantic wave, knocking down all three of them. The startled and frightened wild animals and birds raised such a cacophony of sounds, the villagers cutting wood nearby rushed to the water hole. When Meikhak, .Kadiganglung, and his friend came round, they had no clear recollection of what happened.

When the incident was recounted to his mother, Kadiganglung’s mother knew what had happened. She scarified a rooster to the river spirit for protecting her seventh son. Nobody knew of her sacrifice. A woman was not allowed to make the sacrifices to the spirits. She did not tell anyone. She was satisfied with the knowledge that the river spirit accepted her prayer and sacrifice.


Morning of the appointed day came. Kadiganglung was taken to the paddy field, which was far away from the village. He was put in the auspicious fenced in area in the field. The village youths guarded him the whole night. The next day he will perform the rites of first sowing.
The youths leader said, “Be careful to differentiate danger sounds from the usual night sound of owls hooting, or the dancing and merry making of the frogs,”
The youths from the khangchiu, boys morung, nodded their heads. Some of them afraid in their hearts but put on brave faces.

Kadiganglung sat up inside the temporary sacred shelter for the better part of the night. Though he was fatigued from the week’s fasting, sleep evaded him. He was anxious to perform this right. The future of his village’s abundance in rice depended so much on him.
No sooner did Kadiganglung doze off was he rudely awaken by a dream. It was a recurring dream he had since childhood. He was running away from something. The hair on his arms and neck stood on end in fear. As soon as he was on a bridge, a hornbill flew over him. Then he heard a bloodcurdling cry and woke up. He was sweating and panting. Every dream was the same. At the exact same time, he woke up. But this time, the cry did not stop. The youths guarding him were shouting about spears and daos. There was a commotion. At first, he could not make out what it was about. He could only just listen and sit inside the enclosure. He mumbled some prayers he had learned from his grandfather. “Nangdu khang suang adu dai ye. My spirit is stronger than your spirit”. He could not come out from the fencing. The sacred rites of new rice planting would be broken then. He peeped out and could make out that some wild boars had ventured into the opening. He sighed in relief. He laughed sheepishly to himself. To think the boars could be malignant spirits! It was a good omen. The guards killed one of the wild boars. He could not go back to sleep after that, so he sat up and waited for the village priests and elders to come for the rice sowing rites and ceremonies.

The head Muh poured out the new rice wine on a luiduk, a cup made from the banana leaves and offered it to the spirits. He offered up prayers.
“Pheidoupouh le, phuling reimei tei ling kei tho”, said the Muh.
On being instructed to plant the first seed inside the enclosure, Kadiganglung did so.
He was so relieved to have done this without any disturbances.
He had no doubts that he would be able to accomplish this sacred task and bring honour to his family and clan. He knew this for he was a virgin boy. No spirits would dared disturb the sacred ceremony. But he was concerned about his energy lasting out.

On learning that he had successfully planted the first seed and the sapling, his Khangchiumei, his age group youths from the youth houses, in his village let out joyous shrillings and did a brief dance.

His first broth of rooster garnished with ginger, garlic, long green chilies, bay leaves, cilantro and salt to taste was cooked and given by the maipas. Once back in his own youth house, he was offered the choicest meat and other delicacies, but he knew better not to gulp down his food. He ate slowly and a little portion of the meat. His father taught him not to eat big meals after a prolonged spell of fasting.

His father was an accomplished hunter. And all hunters knew that they should lead their famine bodies back to normal gradually. Kadiganglung had accompanied his father and uncles often for hunting trips that by now he knew not to go overboard in eating, though he was hungry. One hunter many years ago, ate so much food after coming back from a long hunting trip, that his stomach could not digest and it bloated and bloated. The digestive herbs given to him were not effective. He died a few days later.

The next day the Tingkuh, the high priest announced a genna.
“Hei nei ye
Lauphunsuat kabangbi na nei ye
Mei lung kingc khang
Aguai-abangh kingc khang
Anapbang-bi gaikhang…
Kailuang tamgu-tanbian dou mak hke
Phei-lang tanh mak khe
Hei nei ye!”
“Pay heed. It is genna
It is the beginning of the planting season
For people to increase
For cattle to increase
For paddy and yam to increase…
There will be no cutting of wood
No weaving, no spindle works
Pay heed, it is genna.”
This is how the villagers got to rest before the hard planting season starts. Kadiganglung slept late in the morning, till the warm sunrays filtered in through the cracks in the bamboo wall. The dust particles twinkling and dancing in the sunbeam. He felt happy and elated after the sacred lauphunsuat rites were over.

Somewhere, unbeknownst to Kadiganglung, the spirit lurks, biding its time to strike.


Note: The word genna has its roots in the Angami- Naga word kenna, which means ‚it is forbidden. During a genna period much of what is part of every-day life comes to a standstill.
* Khangchiu- Is the dormitory system (Morung). It is an important traditional social institution for the Naga tribes. It is a bachelor dormitory, where the young men live and were disciplined; where they learn customs, folklore, culture, and taught about their roles and responsibilities in the community and also received military training. The young inmates became acquainted with the history, culture, folklore, songs and dances of their people. Important decision of wars and raids were taken in the morung in times of emergencies. Their female counterparts lived in Liuchu.

DEEP BENEATH THE OCEAN

Silpika Kalita

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The azure ocean, home to embedded enormous incomprehensive riches of mysteries and riddles,
More than the Mars, lies unfathomed, underneath the conundrum of oceanic colossal rhythms,
From the The Milky Sea Phenomenon, a sight captured as bioluminescence illusion,
The Purple Orb of the ocean floor of California and the Baltic Sea’s anomalous puzzles,
Like the alien spaceship put foot on the colossal quagmires of oceanic chasm!
When the underwater volcanoes erupt to perplex beyond imagination in huddle,
To probe and discern those gems of oyster shell’s luminous pearls dazzles,
Deep beneath sleeping peacefully in the ocean’s cradle!
The fatal enigma of the unplumbed immensely profound oceanic mysteries will never dwindle,
The more one plunges to pierce in deep muse it’s vastness engulfs to diddle!
The superficial waves in corrugation, are mere widening its hitherto horizontal hurdles,
The bizarre sounds emanating from beneath are like giant icebergs scraping the oceanic floor in madly rhythm!
The obscure oceanic realms, its myriads mystical appearances remains timeless, fancy of millions!

Eras and eras pass, the mythical mermaid’s riddle are yet to resolve,
As centuries pass, may replete with the witness of numerous human civilizations!
Like the Atlantis of Japan, from time immemorial, the oceans are abodes of colossal confusions!
The voyages disappear in the Mystic Triangle, who knows what lies beneath the mythical abstractions?
The twirling sounds of infinite ocean swirling in the sea shells are captivating it’s admirers attractions!
The archipelago one after the other vanished without the trace, as in Marina Trench’s aberrations;
As if the Phantom Islet of Bermeja, in its murky abyssal cradle’s compositions!
The Crop Circles discovered beneath its bosom as if the signage of other world’s manifestations,
The ocean phenomenon of green flashes meets the red tides, reveals its magnificent disposition,
Wants to plunge, swim like the mermaid, in its mystical cerulean temporal lilt motion!
Oh, the oceanic conundrum more we try to fathom, the more we entangled in its cryptic chasm!

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