Sue Responsibility of Authorship of Sutardji Calzoum Bachri

Written by Nurel Javissyarqi
Translated by Agus B. Harianto

Acknowledgement (historical story)

As usual, I search the data from the mass media on Google for myself to be uploaded onto the website on which has been running since July 2008. I was ready to take serious risk to make the site from transportation fee of the literary event in Jakarta. After from the capital city, I felt as if I had become a poet, moreover I read a poem on same stage with the masters of literature, on the eve of the inaugural of Guru Besar (Professor) Abdul Hadi W.M., on the campus of Paramadina.

On the train, on the way back home, I thought about my writing, also the works of my friends that do not touched by the mass media. So I intend the web as a medium of propaganda. Gradually I realized the usefulness of the workmanships outside the circle I know. Therefore, I take their works. At first I doubted, whether it is an illegal act, but after I checked it, there are so many do so for collective archive.

The words “collective” means so much as the way it is, because at there I do not make a profit of it, on the contrary, every year I spend some money for ownership. It doesn’t matter. Even if I have to be sued just because of the data I took from mass media, I think I have so many fellows. But the data I took from Blogspot, Facebook and other social network, I ask for permission from the writer before I uploaded.

Well, one day I found an essay of Sutardji Calzoum Bachri: Sajak dan Pertanggungjawaban Penyair (Poems and Accountability of Poet) on the web Infoanda (not the Republika). I was thrilled at that time: “Wow, this is the writing of famous people which rarely shown, except in e-books and such“.

But then I snapped on Tardji’s phrase: “Peran penyair menjadi unik, karena – sebagaimana Tuhan tidak bisa dimintakan pertanggungjawaban atas ciptaannya, atas mimpinya, atas imajinasinya – secara ekstrim boleh dikatakan penyair tidak bisa dimintakan pertanggungjawaban atas ciptaannya, atas puisinya. (The role of poet becomes unique, because – as the God could not be requested the responsibility of His creation, of His dream, of His imagination – extremely we may say that the poet can not be asked the responsibility of his creation, of his poetry.”

Right at that moment I was disturbed, my mind was hypnotized by the usual speech in the East Javanese society: “Although I was not diligent in worship, have a lot of sin, but don’t you ever insult my religion, my God, my prophet, my conviction.” Those emotion transformed sheets of writing that is published now.

Actually, I already knew the event of Pekan Presiden Penyair from the SMS sent by Amin Wangsitalaja. But somehow, I just said thanks for the information.

Those series made me rush to figure out, whether true expression of the Presiden Penyair? You could find out about it later. But, first, allowed me to have little chat.

Suddenly, a glimpse of Tardji crossed in front of my laptop. I looked at him sharply with my old memories, but he was glaring at me when I seriously thought. And the point increased wide, when I was trying to understand, then became my mind.


It is easy to imagine someone wrapped in clothes of a few colors: white, black, brown, lighter than blurred, it could be supported and attenuated by room lighting. I observed it deeply in the heart, then suggestion came through, or I believe it there?

I can do it because I’ve met him before. And if only I had never met, I put the shadow of his picture among the walls of feelings while was suggesting my eyes to realize, the fact he didn’t in front of me that moment.

If I have no knowledge all, such as the God that I know through His words, and of course this distance is holy by faith, believing upon His laws. Then my thoughts strayed far, does the One similar like His creatures? Eventually I erased that reasoning, moreover I haven’t finished yet to understand all His verses, including in various patterns of interpretation, while err on the other side weighing my step figuring out the One.

My memory was drawing back into a few years ago, when I entered the Jaringan Islam Liberal sites. I read their critique that does not display a perfect religion doctrine. It was severed, and also it based on merely the reasoning reflected by thinkers that the quality of their faith is doubted, or on the contrary, they have different beliefs. Whereas, there are so many scholars, but why didn’t they take the closest speech, instead of lower.

On the web of JIL, there were rules that time; comments should not be offensive of sara (suku, agama, ras, dan antar golongan; ethnic, religious, racial, and inter-group) and such of it, and it would be uploaded or not, it depends on the organizer. And apparently, my comment did not show up until now, whereas it is ordinary rebuttal: “If you have such opinion, then try to make a book, let me understand the whole schools of your reasoning. And do not forget to let me know, definitely I will write back as much as you wrote“. But my comment never shown up, I am longer noticed.

My memories suddenly came from the memoir, educated people call it a reflection of the events, maybe, I’ll re-correction. And the word of correction is the reflection of consciousness on the results of spontaneity patented by contemplation, if we want to enter the purely mind.

Suddenly a figure like Donny Gahral Adian came in front of me. Yes, he appeared with his mustache and sideburns. I remember very well, he had supported my views during the discussion about the book of Trilogi Kesadaran, a collection of my essays, published in 2006, at the bookstore near the campus of Universitas Indonesia (UI). He said more or less like this:

“It’s indeed, style of the way of Eastern philosophers is as this”, while he was pointing at me. My heart was proud, because it was all witnessed by two masters, and I still remember Damhuri Muhammad said to me that one of them from UI and another from Universitas Gajah Mada (UGM). And I also remember I said the words until they nodded, whether understood or confused disagree. At that time I said something like this: “Someone’s character could be seen from his tendency”.

Then I felt like I was inside the circle of the philosophers. But I have question until now, why cann’t we make our own school of philosophy? Let we do not just follow to the West; “Whereas you all are intelligent and capable to write”.

“In simply way you could compose writing, then be.” That’s I said to them.

And then my character was divided. The other one said: “Nurel, your book Trilogi Kesadaran had so many typos to be fixed.” Then another said: “Yes, I admitted it, but I already revised it, it is just not reprinted.” The first one said: “But I’m still in doubt, I think it needs to be submitted to the editor”. And I let those characters became noisy in debate.

My characters splitting reminded me on the term of Pancasona, a title I designed to continue Trilogi Kesadaran entitle Pancasona Kesadaran. And one of the essays I want to put into is my essay about Tardji. But, when I uploaded part I, Denny Mizhar commented by giving Tardji’s schedule in Malang in the next month. So I turned my destination, I took the essay to be published. I just thought if the event was canceled, it doesn’t matter. After all, my disappointed would be still in laugh.

But, at the other side, my crown was motivated by the wind of the year 2001, when there was event of discussing my book entitle Balada-Balada Takdir Terlalu Dini (Ballads of Too Early Destiny) in the Purna Budaya Yogyakarta, after I read the poem titled Ballad of Jala Suta, which argued by Suryanto Sastroatmodjo and Iman Budi Santosa. I remembered well what Iman Budi Santosa said. His words rang more when I was revising this book. And he said: “You’re like keris, Keris Gandring. You could endanger other people and yourself”. Regarding the answer, I keep it to myself.

It is obvious that the heart keeps last longer than the brain. The heart draws the deepest desire, dreams and hope comes through the light of imagination and through the mind as intermediary, before you have those do not say yes. Does image like a light?

It is like the electrical energy to bring a flash, when there is friction in the mind on the struggling of heart and surrounding conditions. The newest situation, further readings in circulation, as well as write and read the memory. The happening of self fight I call it struggle, though the mind, similar like the soul’s self-defense for the sake of the location of the testimony.


The forgetfulness comes from the accumulation of piled memory like to come out in the same time, but the hole as the way it out is narrow; the other is as if erased, whereas it just settles and hidden. The narrow hole occurred on many factors; less care memory by reading, over excessive pleasure could swell the nerve, narrowing of the air cavity. Ah, it could be asked to the doctor. If there is anything wrong, just please understand that it’s merely chit-chat.

As explained about forget, it’s true the images offered thoughts, or the images is similar nets thrown to the bottom of reflection. Or on the contrary, the mind provokes the images to string threads of experience, the level of consciousness. This leveling may be forgotten by Tardji, he forgot the streams of knowledge of the predecessors just because of he has courage. Same as my bravery about narrowing the air in the brain, which I mentioned above.

Hence, the warning is necessary; the revision is absolute to commemorate the level of his consciousness, whether grounded in his way or just uncertain in fatigue of thinking. The term for that is the dead end, losing direction until the moving one is only in imagination, and then the responsibility is escape.


There are some friends I asked for their opinions regarding this book. The ones makes me dislike was the warning regarded my name. The first thing he just wondered to keep my name, and second thing, he told me that my writing style is difficult to be understood.

Then I insisted, “Well my friend. The way I write this prologue is not more like you, which is so easily understood and frankly. It’s way similar sa’i or jogging. So, no wonder you’re productive, but you better try to reduce the redundant word that you interpret the emphasis as the level of ads. Because, in the settling the testimony is matured, result of remembrance to the nature reading and books is standardized, in order not to be boring like the news and introductory textbook.

About my name, why did you worry, is this because you are studying Kitab Para Malaikat (the Book of Angels) that merely a half? Keep sneaking will make me incapable to rise when I will be argued? If so, just stop your research, in fact I am nothing all along. And here, I just do not like with the understanding of the God dream, imagines. May you be happy as a family, my friend”.

Speaking of family, I remembered my son’s expression when I called him: “My son” (in teasing way). Explicitly, he answered: “No, Abah’s children are books, laptop, coffee, and cigarettes.” This thing are used to hear and obviously felt wonderful, I could hug him every night, while reading a book.

And one more you worried about, you said my style of writing is complicated (intricate), incommunicative. And that time I said: “But you do understand the Book of Angels”. You said: “Yes Kang (brother), but not everyone understands Sampean (your) writing”.

Look my friend: “I can interpret one paragraph of yours and also mine, slowly but sure such this way, becomes an essay if I want to. And of course it all comes from references of contemplation and other resources contained within me, and also from private library. I could interpret the words from you from the side of psychologically, philosophically, and anything you like “.

I think the style could be debated further; at least there are understood my poetry, kumprung (obstinately) if no one understand my essays. If only compartmentalizing will be trapped in blindness in knowledge, then just don’t worry about me my friend.


Astagfirullah!. Sorry, I took my ablutions first, because I had haphazard thinking a few moments ago. This was for reducing the weight of stretch of my wings that has far willed. I wrote this on the Facebook’s status, certainly there were so many friends teasing at me. But to me it just a common thing, it doesn’t matter whether in the crowded of market, and about the quality it is of course ready to be accounted for.

Regarding the responsibility, I quote poet’s writings of the late Zainal Arifin Thoha, in his book Eksotisme Seni Budaya Islam (Khasanah Peradaban dari Serambi Pesantren), published by Bukulaila 2002, in the first chapter Menuju Logika, Estetika, dan Dialektika al Qur’an, on page 15. “Kullukum roo’in wa kullukum mas’uulin  ‘an ro’iyyatihi“. every one of you is a caretaker, and is responsible for his consignment. That’s the way the Prophet Muhammad SAW. warned us. A leadership, of course firstly would need the concept of lead, in this context the pensive exploration (reflection and ijtihad) of qauniyah verses (macrocosm), and the insaniyah verses (microcosm), bases on the logic-theological? Because of,” He created everything, and then determined it in a precise measure” (Qur’an 25:2) “.

Then my mind terrorized me questions. Because I was less able to answer, I asked a question to the criticist Mr. Maman S. Mahayana.

“Mr. Maman, this month I want to make a book about my response to the Tardji’s essay entitled Sajak dan Pertanggungjawaban Penyair, which I give title: Mempertanyakan Tanggungjawab Kepenyairan Sutardji dan Asy Syu’ara (Para Penyair). I want to greet him with the book at his schedule to Malang, this May. And then, does it polite if I write his essay? This is useful for the balance of the book, for the sake none deem me as lempar batu sembunyi tangan (irresponsible to anything he does), but I’m afraid it’s not allowed, hence please give me your considerations. Thanks before ….”.

“Dear Nurel. Just write the essay of SCB. Put it as an attachment with the publication of data as it is. For example, the title, the work, published in which, what the publisher is, when it published. In the scientific tradition wherever it is, that way is allowed, despite the writer minds. So it’s not about polite or not, allowed or not. This is scientific tradition. Because, truthfully, responding to someone’s writings is our respect (appreciate) to the writing, no matter the contents of the criticism. Okay, keep writing. Regards. Maman S. Mahayana “.

Thus this introduction is no more than a thirst for learning. Thank you to the deceased teacher Sastroatmodjo Suryanto. Without forgetting S.W. Teofani and Imamuddin SA as its editor. And also Isti Anisa my beloved and my son, Ahmad Syauqillah, hopefully it will be meaningful to readers.


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