an evening at angkor, siem reap, cambodia

Bagaimana caraku mengenangmu
Melintasi kelima pilar meru
Yang memaknai langit biru
Di Phumi Siem Reab
Sekaligus aksentuasi magis pada garis cakrawala
how can I remember you
throughout the five pillars of “meru”
which noted under the blue sky
in the land of Siem Reab
giving a magical accentuation on the horizon

(c) ukirsari

Pada Yang Esa
Dipuja semesta alam
Lewat undak-undakan terjal Angkor
Dalam ruang persembahan
Kudus oleh doa yang meruapi seluruh hati
Perlambang kepulangan
Pada rumah
Ketika hari berangkat senja
Saat matahari merebahkan diri ke barat
to the Almighty One
to whom worshiped in this earth
by the steep stairway of Angkor
in the chamber for praying
holy by the prayers which mirrored into the heart
symbolizing of going home
when the daylight changing into night fall
when the sun laying to the west

Adiluhung karya manusia
Pada siapapun yang menggarisbawahi
Keesaan semesta
Tanpa perlu mendebat, menghakimi
Bahkan menghapus sejarah
Seperti ledakan yang dicipta Khmer Merah
Tiada daya mereka di hadapan Mu yang penuh damai
a man-made masterpiece
to whom will underlining
the one in the universe
without arguing, judging
or even erasing the history
like the bombing blast created by Khmer Rouge
seems powerless in the front of your peaceful face

Kepada meru
Yang memberi bayang maya pada perjalanan panjang manusia
Menuju keabadian Nya
Kepada siapa aku tunduk sejenak
Merasai hadiah yang Kau berikan berabad lalu
Sebelum semua kisah menjadi sejarah
Sebelum waktu membeku
Di gerbang Nirwana
Pada ruang doa
Sekaligus tempat pemakaman
Kepadamu saya datang, wahai keagungan
to the “meru”
which gives shadows for the long journey of men
through the eternity
to whom I give my respect
feeling your gift from the ancient of centuries
before any stories becomes histories
before the time frozen
in the gateway of heaven
in the chamber of praying
also the cemetery
to you I come, oh the holy Great one

* ukirsari, duapuluh satu agustus 2003, disaksikan tanah dan langit Angkor*

ad: meru = the top tower of temples in Hinduism, symbolizing the relation of men to the universe and the One who created them

The Sanctuary

ukirsari: Sideth, why these stairs so steep and narrow, not like any other staircases I’d ever seen like Borobudur and so …
Sideth: A very good question, Arie. This temple, mirroring the journey of soul from the world to Nirvana. So, why the body has to climb up like human? It’s not necessary, the soul can fly as light as cloud, wind or even bird
ukirsari: Oh, so romantic and very touching!
Sideth: Yes, that’s true. It’s also became a funeral temple for King Jayavarman II and the fact about the position facing to the west.
ukirsari: I know. In Hindu, it’s reflecting death. Face to the sunset, symbolizing someone’s going old and preparing his way to Nirvana.
Sideth: Correct! Arie, do you want to pray at the highest tower of Angkor?
ukirsari: Sure! I will.
Sideth: You can leave that small backpack with me here.
ukirsari: Okhon chran, Sideth
[Om, shanti shanti om. Katur ingkang pangabekti Gusti Allah, dalem ukirsari manggalani Soepijono-Brodjokaloso ngaturaken matur nuwun sanget dening kesempatan ngambah mawi tanah lan ndalem para trah lan leluhur …. Mugi diberkahi sadaya ingkang dados lelakon urip menika. Mugi kamulyan. Mugi kaendahan sadereng srengenge lengser, kados pralambang kawontenan Angkor Wat lan Phnom Bakheng]

The mighty ancient Khmer Empire

The name ‘angkor’ literaly derived from Sanskrit lingo ‘nagara’ [in Khmer becomes ‘nokorn’, in Kawi becomes ‘nagara’ then ‘nagari’, meanwhile in Indonesian becomes ‘negeri’ or ‘negara’] means ‘the city’. Then ‘wat’ means ‘a place for the worshippers’ [in Buddhism]. Angkor Wat is the cultural home of the Khmer people and known as one of The Seven Wonders in the World. Then got a title ‘The World Heritage 1992’ from UNESCO.

Appeared at the Cambodia national flag, Angkor Wat was rediscovered by a French naturalist; Henri Mouhot [1826 – 1861] in 1860. So-called ‘rediscovery’ because ‘The Lost City of Angkor’ ever be written in the diaries among explorers and Jesuit priests in 16th century.

The era of Angkor begins at the reigning of King Jayavarman II (802 – 834). The kings of ancient Khmer Empire after him follows his steps to build the beautiful temples as symbols of their powers. It’s becomes huge complex temples called Angkor Wat and Angkor Thom nowadays, which mirrored the mighty Khmer Empire during 6 centuries [802 – 1431] under reigning of 22 kings. Zhou Daguan, the diplomat from Yuan Dynasty [China] noted this history during his visit in Cambodia at the past centuries.

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