I Rhymed Myself A Dream

This is a story I hope you’ll fancy.
The plot is fictive but there’s something real from me.
It’s the poem; it represents all the things in UK I’d like to do.
But will I get the chance?
Well, I guess it’s up to you.

* * *

Kye opened the door to her flat. She’s drained from all the work she did today. It paid off, though. She managed to close a deal that would make her bosses happy. On top of that, tomorrow’s the first day of her holiday. Kye’s done such a good job at work for the past year she got two weeks’ worth of paid leave.

“What to do? What to do?”

She dropped herself onto her sofa, thinking about what she should do—where should she go? It’s been a while since she’s travelled anywhere. And now’s the perfect moment to get lost without having to worry about work.

“Hmm… ah!”

Struck by an idea, she scurried to her room. She pulled a box under her bed and opened it. Postcards from pen pals, clippings from travel magazines—Kye used to collect these when she was in junior high. They’re like her travel bucket list. While she was rummaging through the contents, a piece of paper fell. It was old and crumpled. Kye flattened it and tried to read it.

“What could this be, I won—wait, this is perfect!”

Kye hurried to her phone, her eyes still glued to the piece of paper. After a somewhat awkward session of trying to grab her phone without seeing it, she dialled a friend who works at a travel agent.

“Hello, Jamie? This is Kye. Listen, book me a ticket. Just the ticket. First class. Where? London, England. Three days from now. Got it? Okay, call me later with the details. Thanks.”

* * *

DAY ONE

Three days later….

I’d like to leave
During the season of fallen leaves
To the land of “Her Majesty”
Where her subjects live happily
May God save the Queen

Heathrow Airport. Kye took a deep breath and let the atmosphere sink in. Her feet could still support her, but she felt weak. Kye shivered as if she had ague. She couldn’t help but laugh out of happiness. If she were still in her teenage years she’d probably have burst into tears. Yet, she managed to compose herself. Her logic kicked in. She needed to get her luggage and head straight to the hotel.

* * *

Kye jumped onto the bed the minute she walked out of the bathroom. Her hair’s still wet, but she doesn’t care about that right now.

“London. I’m really in London,” she said, her voice muffled under the pillows. It felt so surreal.

Kye headed for the window. Opening the curtains, she sighed at the sight of the city in lights. She could just stand there ‘til dusk dawned, but she knew she’ll need to rest to prepare for the following days. Though in euphoria, Kye managed to doze into a deep slumber minutes after she closed her eyes.

* * *

DAY TWO

I want to stroll down River Lea
Let wonderfully random thoughts fill up my brain

As I skip giddily down the street
Where the ends of my fantasy and reality meet

Kye woke up to faint rays of light that broke through the openings of the curtains, softly dancing as the caress the wooden floor. She dressed herself and hastily went to have breakfast. Nothing could stop her from munching down a full and hearty breakfast! With a happy tummy and a skip in her step, Kye got ready to explore the city.

There’s a slight fog in the air, but for Kye, it makes everything look so mystical and mysterious. And magical, too. She caught a cab and went to River Lea.

It was beautiful.

Kye thanked her lucky stars that she went there in early autumn. Most of the leaves have changed colour, some have even fallen to the ground, but there were still many of them hanging on branches, and she could spot a few green leaves. Then her eyes spotted something and she beamed even more.

It was a boat. After asking around, Kye found out she could step in and enjoy a ride down the river. Of course she wanted to! She almost jumped inside the little boat! But when she saw the view, she calmed down, soaking it all in. By coincidence, she overheard two elderly women talking.

“Do you miss your son? He hasn’t been back here for what—a year?”

“Yes, love. Ah, I do miss him so. When he was just a tiny lad we’d go to Richmond Park. Oh, how he loved to see the deer!”

“Um, excuse me,” Kye interrupted them, her eyes sparkling with enthusiasm, “may I ask which park you were talking about, ma’am? And by any chance, is it located around here?”

* * *

DAY THREE

My wish ‘tis to lie on the ground
Watch the sun set as falling leaves surround
Envisaging the beauty, I have no doubt
Right there, right then, I’ll be bound
To fall in love

Kye was out of breath. Lying on the ground atop soft grass, she smiled. She was in Richmond Park all day, only going out for lunch at a nearby restaurant before coming back. She ran around like a little girl, stepped on crunchy leaves, dipped her feet in the pond there. She even got to talk to a complete stranger who explained the flowers that grew there. The bluebells were Kye’s favourite.

Kye could hear some children laughing in the distance. But it was barely more than a whisper. The only obvious sound was cooing. It couldn’t be helped—the pigeons are everywhere.

The sun was slowly going down. Kye stayed on the ground, watching the beautiful scenery. She chuckled out of happiness. In three days, she lost count of how many times she did that.

This vacation’s nowhere near a mistake on my part, she thought. And now she decided to clear her head and focus on the sky, the birds, the trees, the deer—everything her little mind could hear and feel and smell and see and turn into memory.

For a second the thought to take a picture entered. But she shook it off. Kye didn’t want to lose a millisecond of anything. She could always browse for pictures, but she can’t always be at peace like this. Besides, her memory’s enough, and why should she take pictures? Bragging rights? She’d rather keep a place like this to herself, if she could.

Slowly, unwillingly, Kye got up. She knew the park would be closing soon. She agonisingly walked out of Richmond Park, hoping that the few days she still has would be half as good as this one.

* * *

DAY FOUR

I’d like to try out the culinary
Some fun food for my tummy
Also immerse myself in culture
Maybe a pub crawl and other things in feature

“Ah, I’m stuffed!”

“But you haven’t even had a beer, yet, love!”

Kye was in a little dining place, drinking her tea. She’s just finished a full English Breakfast and a portion of Fish n’ Chips. I wonder how long it’ll take before I feel good enough to take a walk, she thought as she rubbed her stomach, signalling it’s full. The friendly middle-aged man who owned the place laughed and placed a small brown paper bag in front of her.

“Tell you what, love. Since you like my cooking so much, I’m giving you samples of my cakes—pies and crumbles. The recipes were my grandmama’s, so I’ll bet you they’re absolutely, positively delicious! Oh, don’t be shy, take them! Compliments for a well-fed customer,” he said with a wink. Kye smiled back and thanked her a few times before finally leaving.

“Now… where to?”

Kye wandered into a pub and ordered a glass of beer. A group of people around her age walked in, laughing and giving orders for drinks with ease. Unconsciously, she eyed them. Kye didn’t even realise it until one of them saw her.

“You alone, love?”

One of the girls said so, making the others turn their heads at her. After a few seconds of examining her, their faces turned into warm, welcoming ones.

“Come with us, my mates and I won’t bite” said a boy, laughing.

“We’re going on a pub crawl. It’s better than being alone, right?”

“We promise you’ll have a merry time!”

Kye thought it over, but she didn’t really have to. She felt like she could trust them. Besides, she’s not someone who’ll let herself get drunk and get taken advantage of. And she could always come up with a reason to leave if she felt anything off.

“Alright, then.”

* * *

DAY FIVE

What would I do to step into Buckingham Palace?
Or see a passerby as an ant from atop London Eye?
Tour the land ‘til my feet grow callused
Then still somehow manage to go through Trafalgar Square
Amid all the hustle and buzz of tourists

Sighing, Kye stretched her feet. She’s been walking around aimlessly around London since dawn, going into any place she saw interesting. An art gallery, a few bookstores, an antique shop, Trafalgar Square, a cafe with a live band playing folk songs. She even spent two hours at Buckingham Palace!

The sky’s already dark, but she had one last stop. London Eye. And now she’s in one of the capsules, looking at the city lights like the first night from the hotel. Only… this was more beautiful. It’s breathtaking, to say the least. Kye almost cried watching it.

Her feet were tired, nearly sore, but she stood up again. Kye carefully placed both hands on the glass, then her forehead. It felt cool to the touch.

You know how they say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder? Kye believed that. But she also believes that something this gorgeous would look magical to anyone—anyone—whose eyes set upon it.

* * *

DAY SIX

All the historic places to see
All the wonderful people to meet
Places like Sherlock Holmes Museum and Westminster Abbey
The least is those two I’ll someday visit

Kye was just a few feet away from her dream museum. The famous Sherlock Holmes Museum. Her eyes were so fixated on it, she didn’t realise she stepped on someone’s foot.

“Oh, I’m so sorry!”

“No, no, I’m alright, love.”

Kye had stepped on the stranger’s foot. The redhead introduced herself as Tori. As it turns out, Tori wasn’t exactly paying attention either. She was texting someone while walking.

“Serves me right, doesn’t it?” she gave a playful wink that managed to elicit a laugh from the both of them.

“Are you here on holiday, then? You don’t strike me as a local,” Tori said with a smile. She genuinely seemed to be guessing, not in any way trying to offend. Kye nodded.

“I’m leaving tomorrow, actually. But I’d like to tour this place just a bit more, while I can. I’m planning to go to Westminster Abbey after this,” Kye said, a bit surprised for telling so much to a person she met barely five minutes ago. But during her stay in London, she felt that she’s so comfortable. She could talk openly to the people as long as she mind her manners, and everyone seems to be friendly enough to at least give an answer with a warm smile on their faces.

“Lucky you, then,” Tori said, “I’m going there today to draw,” she pointed to her backpack, presumably containing art supplies, “Would you come with me after you’re done here?”

“But… won’t I be intruding?” Kye hesitated.

“No, love, not at all the trouble! Actually, I kind of wanted company. Now I do!”

“Well, in that case, it would be rude to refuse, wouldn’t it?”

* * *

“What was your favourite part?”

“The garden, and the museum,” Kye sighed, wishing the Abbey opened for another hour. There was so much to look at but so little time, though she spent over two hours in there.

“Mine’s ‘Poet’s Corner’, as you can imagine.”

They both laughed. Tori turned out to be quite the artistic person. She can draw, write, sing, even act! Kye was ashamed of how loud she laughed when Tori tried to impersonate poets from centuries ago. It seems they just click.

“So, where do we go now?” Kye asked.

“Hmm… how about the Beatles Museum?” Tori said after some thought, “We still have over an hour ‘til they close.”

“Count me in.”

* * *

DAY SEVEN

This isn’t a dream that may not come true
This is a goal that one day will fall due
It may be tomorrow—I’ll never know
But I’ll keep believing
One day, to UK I’ll go
I just know

“Well done, myself.”

A week has passed. Kye’s back at where she started; Heathrow Airport. In her hand’s the piece of paper that brought her here in the first place. It’s a poem she wrote long ago when she saw pictures of a friend’s trip to UK. It was like something stirred in her heart. She went back home that same day and went on a frenzy, asking everything about the United Kingdom to her parents.

Now I’ve found out for myself, she thought, ending her reminiscing session when she heard the announcement to board her flight.

She saw what she wanted to see. She found a new friend in Tori. Kye knew she’d miss Great Britain. Maybe when I get home I should start planning on my next holiday, and the next after that. I’ll definitely go back here—and God knows where else.

With that thought in mind and a smile plastered to her face, Kye walked towards her gate. Slowly, slowly. Taking the last moments in. Before she goes to bed on board and dream about her trip all over again.

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One Fateful Day at Trafalgar Square

London, England. 1920.

The little girl sat in the middle of Trafalgar Square, picturesque carvings and fountains surrounding her as how flowers are neatly placed in a garden. People passed her but took no heed, their minds caught up in thought of their own personal tasks for the day.

The girl’s eyes were set like stone, scarcely blinking. They were grey. Almost transparent, like a thin fog you could see through. Her glare was fixated upon a boy approximately her age. He, unlike so many, didn’t move much. He was sitting down in a corner, hidden from everyone’s gaze except hers, hugging his knees, his face hidden from sight by black locks of hair. The girl approached with caution, but curiosity glowed in her eyes like fireflies.

She leaned in closer. The boy’s skin looked sallow. He was thin—as is his breathing. His clothes were worn though not ragged or torn. She figured he must be a runaway or something else as unfortunate.

Suddenly, the rhythm of his breathing was disrupted.

“Who are you?”

The boy’s head snapped up at her. His eyes were narrow like yellow-skinned people the girl had seen roaming around as tourists, but they were green. Dead green like thick, soft, velvet-like moss.

“Ye mean me? You’re looking at me?” the girl pointed at herself, looking stunned. The boy nodded, finding it weird that she’d be so surprised he talked to her.

“What’s your name?” he said again.

“I’m just… me. I aven’t been called anythin’ in a long time. Ye call me as ye pleases,” she said.

The boy was stunned. He hasn’t heard that kind of talk anywhere but in plays and movies. But he found her voice pleasant. He scrutinized the little girl’s looks. Golden locks framing a thin face, cascading in loose waves down her back. She wore a plain white dress with frills on the bottom. She looked like….

“I’d like to call you Lyra, if you don’t mind. I’m Collin,” the boy extended his hand. Tilting her head, still holding her stare, the girl—now Lyra—shook it fimbly.

“Why Lyra?” she asked again, her eyes widening with curiosity.

“Because you look like an angel,” Collin said with innocent bluntness found only with children, “I like your voice too. You remind me of a lyre. It’s a harp angels use to play music.”

The girl beamed. She fancied being thought of as an angel.

“Aye, that’d be dandy. Ye ‘as an eye fer good names, ye does.”

“Why do you talk like that?” Collin asked, arching his eyebrows.

“Don’t know meself, lad. I’ve always spoken in the likes of this, I ‘ave. Just like me ol’ Pops does,” she paused a moment, “I noticed folks around ‘ere are more… civilised. I hope a clean lad like yerself won’t mind lil’ me talkin’ this way.”

“Oh, no, no, no!” Collin waved his hands, rather dramatically, “I love how you speak! It’s like language from the old days.”

“Ah! I see yer a kind one, then,” Lyra grimaced at her new buddy, “Some o’ my ol’ nurses said I was nought but a naughty mess, ‘specially for a gal.”

Collin shook his head when he saw Lyra’s face fell. Mother had always taught him to cheer others up when they needed cheering up. Now would be an appropriate example.

“I think you’re wonderful, Lyra!”

The little girl’s face lightened. She gave a giggle. Collin thought her laugh pleasant. Her whole body shook, and the way sunlight caught her golden hair’s shine made it all the more beautiful sight to look upon.

“Well, since we’re on swell terms, methinks it’s fair to show ye sumthin’. Hold my hand.”

Collin immediately did so. Lyra took a deep breath and, to Collin’s astonishment, began to float. Carving a more dumbfounded look on the boy’s face, Collin also began to float. Lyra whispered something, and they were whisked away into the clouds.

“W-where are we going?” Collin asked. He was by no means afraid for he trusts his new friend, but he was curious all the same.

“Lemme see… what place does ye fancy?”

Collin thought for a moment. His gaze was set upon the thin blanket of clouds slowly travelling by gushes of wind, but his noggin was tinkering. After a few seconds of tapping on his chin, he nodded.

“To Westminster Bridge, please, my good lady!” he exclaimed, pointing at the direction. Lyra laughed. Being with him felt like going on an adventure.

“Aye, aye, sir!”

The two flew past buildings and wonderful-looking places; offices and hotels and little shops. Lyra seemed accustomed to the scenery, but Collin gaped at the view.

“It’s beautiful.”

“A sight for the eyes, ain’t it?” Lyra grinned before pointing at a certain tall, towering time-teller.

“We’re here.”

The second they reached the ground right in front of Big Ben, Collin ran toward Westminster Bridge. Lyra wondered and pondered at what could be the matter, so she followed suit, though at a slower pace. It wasn’t hard to find Collin. He stood out in the crowd though no one bid him any attention.

“Father?”

Lyra stopped in her tracks. Collin stood on the pavement behind a man who seemed to be doing a sketch of Big Ben. She saw him try to reach out to the man and tried to stop Collin, but her effort was futile.

“W-what?!”

Collin tried to grab the man’s coat, but instead his hand passed through him. Lyra painfully watched as Collin frantically tried to touch something. First the man, then other people, then the ground. His feet could stand on objects as solid things could, but his hands couldn’t grasp anything.

“What is this?! Did you do something to me?”

Collin approaches Lyra, who walked a few steps back. Suddenly a car passed and it drove through her. As if she’s made out of thin air. Collin gasped.

“I—I’m sorry, I am!” Lyra cried, “I wanted to tell ye, b-but I feared ye’ll take me fer a nutter!”

Minutes passed. Collin waited for her to calm down, then asked for an explanation. He couldn’t believe what he heard.

“We’re dead, Collin. We ain’t nothin’ but ghosts now. Spirits if ye’d like it better.”

“That’s all lies and bollocks!”

Still in disbelief, Collin tried to shout at people, waving his hands in front of them. No one reacted. Lyra was telling the truth.

Collin couldn’t think clearly. As young as he is, he understood death. His eyes clearly showed disbelief though he knew what’s happening is real. Lyra sighed and held her hand out, silently asking Collin to trust her once more. Reluctantly, he consented.

They flew once more. This time, the journey took quite a long time. She led him to a quiet, ancient-looking patch of land. A graveyard. Lyra pointed to a stone that was partly damaged. Engraved at the bottom part that still stood were numbers.

“1863 – 1874. T-this is your… grave?”

Lyra nodded, looking intensely for Collin, trying to assure him to believe her. Well, he did. That would explain things—why Lyra seemed so surprised when he talked to her, how they could fly, why no one paid any attention to them. No one even so much as glared at a dirty pair of children, though Collin’s been stared at a few times because of his looking sick.

“So we’re dead?”

“Aye.”

Silence draped over them for a few moments.

“That man ye tried to touch—the one drawin’ Big ol’ Ben back at the bridge,” Lyra started, “He’s yer ol’ pops?”

“I-I think so.”

“Ye think so?” Lyra said, stunned.

“I’ve never met him. If I did, I don’t remember.”

Collin told his story.

His father was never physically present in his life. He’d been raised by his mother in the countryside. They were poor and they only job that paid enough his father could find was in London. He had to work each day and couldn’t afford going back because it meant losing money. For the twelve years of his life, Collin and his father only communicated through letters. Sometimes, his father sent sketches he made. In his last letter, he told Collin he’d be spending a lot of his little free time at Westminster Bridge because he wanted to make a sketch of Big Ben.

Last year, both managed to save enough money to send each other pictures of themselves. A fortnight ago, Collin’s mother died, and he decided to look for his father. He wanted to tell him the news directly, and he had no one else to turn to. Trying to find his father in London by a photograph, using only the little money he had and all the food he could muster, Collin started on the journey of his life. A journey that, in the end, took it away.

“I had to hitch rides, you see,” Collin explained, “I didn’t want to waste my money because I might need it, or father might need it. Sometimes I didn’t eat. Sometimes I slept outside. I think that’s why I got sick. Why… why I’m dead,” Collin said before going silent.

“Ye poor child,” Lyra said in tears, her heart going out to him.

“It can’t be helped,” Collin said. He’s twice as mature as his age, Lyra thought.

“So ye’ll be keepin’ me company? We could fly anywhere we fancy, do anythin’ we want together,” she said, her eyes glistening at the thought. Collin’s eyes reflected agreement.

“Interesting offer. I’ll take it.”

* * *

In a corner of Trafalgar Square, dozens of people gathered round a screaming man hugging a cold, lifeless body.

“He’s gone mad.”

“Let him mourn.”

“Get yourself together, man!”

The man heard their voices but couldn’t make out the words. He held the body, weeping all the while. By chance he saw a little boy crouching there. A boy who reminded him of Collin. He had just finished his sketch of Big Ben and was heading back to work, but the boy looked so alone he felt compelled to do something for him. It was strange. It felt like the boy was his own.

As it turns out, the boy was his own.

*

*

*

Oke, sekarang saatnya… catatan (curhat tertulis) penulis! Jangan mengeluh dulu ya, hehe….

Ini random, sih, tapi hari ini bokap gue bilang, “Nanti kita nonton.” tapi dia bilangnya “nondon” buat ngelucu. Dan yang telinga gue tangkap adalah “London”…. *krik krik krik*

Gilaaa ini pencapaian banget! Akhirnya gue berhasil memasukkan tokoh yang ngomong dengan bahasa kuno, hohoho! *perut bergoyang ala Santa* Tapi seriusan, deh, agak susah bikin dialognya, padahal jadinya masih acak begini.

Makasih sangat untuk kalian para pembaca yang tahan membaca sampai bagian ini, juga para teman dan kenalan yang mendukung baik secara nyata atau doa. Maaf kalau ada yang merasa tersinggung dengan apapun di atas, atau bingung dan mikir “Ini makhluk nulis apaan, sih! Gajelas banget!” ya penulisnya aja gajelas, sih, jadi tulisannya… ya gitu, deh.

Sekedar tambahan dan lagi mau jayus aja: “Kenapa lo harus ke Inggris?” Bro, gue sampai bisa nulis kayak di atas gara-gara mau ke Inggris. Liat, kan, bedanya karangan gue dan gaya bahasa asli gue? Gue sendiri bingung kenapa bisa kontras gitu. *(sok) mikir keras* Mungkin kebanyakan nonton slam poetry. Yak, mungkin itu. Dan gue bahkan sampai mencari sejarah kamera dan telepon di Mbah Google. Hitung-hitung nambah pengetahuan, hehehe….

Gue harap kalian menikmati apa yang sudah gue ketik susah payah dalam kegelapan kamar gue di subuh hari. Seperti Collin, gue sampai sakit-sakitan demi sebuah tujuan. (Eaaa sok puitis, deh, gue. Padahal cuma sakit leher karena pegel kepala gue nunduk melulu.)

Oke, karena gue nggak mau membuat mata kalian minus atau semakin minus (dan karena gue nggak tau lagi mau ngetik apa), sekian. *nyengir gaje sambil bungkuk badan*

Lagi mikir... kayaknya plastik bungkusan Veetos ini boleh juga jadi bahan oplas. Hitung-hitung hemat. #dijitak
Lagi mikir… kayaknya plastik bungkusan boleh juga jadi bahan oplas. #dijitak

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Karena Semua Ini

Halo. Hai. Kau disana? Kau sedang membaca? Bagus, bagus.

Kudengar kau bingung memikirkan segala macam alibi yang bisa kau gunakan sebagai alasan untuk pergi ke Inggris? Yah, aku di sini untuk membantu.

Sekarang, matikan musik. Posisikan dudukmu agar nyaman dan baca baik-baik. Sudah? Baiklah. Dan sebelumnya, tolong pahami, aku melakukan ini bukan untukmu, tetapi untuk diriku. Nanti akan kuberi tahu mengapa.

Kau harus pergi ke Inggris karena alasan-alasan yang kecil selayang pandang, namun sebenarnya juga memiliki nilai dan arti.

Kau berpikir bahwa kemungkinanmu menang kecil. Segenggam orang dari entah berapa ribu kontestan. Belum lagi yang membuat lusinan karangan. Bahkan hadiah hiburan pun rasanya begitu jauh dari jangkauan.

Dan memang benar. Tetapi, lihatlah; kau masih mau mencoba. Kau mau mengalahkan suara olok-olok di kepalamu yang menghina, mengatakan bahwa menghabiskan malam demi malam mengetik hingga mata kering hanya membuang waktu saja. Kau cukup berani untuk menghadapi ketakutanmu sendiri bahwa kau tak cukup baik untuk memenangkan sesuatu. Kau cukup berani untuk mengakui bahwa akan ada ribuan tulisan di luar sana yang lebih baik, namun kau tetap mengangkat pensil untuk menggurat di atas kertas dan mengetiknya, lalu mempublikasikannya bagi khalayak umum.

Kau cukup berani untuk membiarkanku bicara padamu, karena sesungguhnya jika kau memang begitu takut pada kekalahan dan ingin melenyapkan ilusi harapan, kau tidak sedang menunda mandi dan mendengarkan kata hati sekarang.

Kau cukup berani untuk memutuskan bahwa lebih baik menangisi kekalahan ketimbang bertanya-tanya akan seribu kemungkinan tentang apa yang bisa terjadi andaikan kau mencoba.

Kau rela meninggalkan les online-mu dan tidak mendapat sertifikat karena ingin fokus menulis walau dengan talenta yang tidak seberapa.

Aku tahu kau cukup percaya diri, namun tidak menyukai menjadi objek bidikan kamera. Terlebih mengambil foto diri sendiri. Lihatlah, kau memaksa membeli keripik kentang Mr Potato dan Veetos dan SMAX Ring walau kau sedang batuk. Lalu kau berpose dengan mereka, walau setengah hati, demi mendapatkan validasi akan tulisanmu.

Mengapa kau harus pergi ke Inggris?

Karena sudah beberapa hari ini kau begadang hingga jam dua, menulis dan mengetik. Mencari inspirasi dari aneka tulisan dan puisi. Karena kau tahu bahwa kreativitasmu ada dalam puncaknya saat tengah malam—saat semua tenang dan diam.

Kau yang suka mengoreksi tugas teman-teman namun enggan membaca ulang tulisan sendiri, namun mau menyunting tulisan-tulisanmu untuk lomba ini. Kau pikir itu bukan alasan? Itu adalah penanda usaha; sebuah “karena” untuk pertanyaan “mengapa”.

Dan kau sudah menepati janji temanmu bahwa kau akan berusaha. Pertama demi dia, lalu bagimu sendiri. Dan sekarang kau benar-benar menginginkan hadiah ini.

Itu alasan-alasan kecil yang terpikirkan olehku. Sekarang tarik nafas dalam-dalam. Aku belum selesai denganmu.

Mengapa kau harus ke Inggris?

Karena, astaga, kau sudah lama ingin ke Inggris. Entah pengaruh tren atau daya tarik luar negeri atau karena alasan lain yang tak kau pahami, Inggris memiliki pesonanya sendiri. Di matamu negara itu seperti berada dalam dunia lain. Di matamu negara itu terlihat magis. Dan kau ingin mencicipi sihirnya secara langsung.

Kau harus ke Inggris karena tempat-tempat yang ingin kau kunjungi di sana, dan karena segala yang akan kau alami pula. Perlukah kudaftarkan satu-persatu? Big Ben, Istana Buckingham, Museum Sherlock Holmes, London Eye… bahkan stadion sepak bola. Kau mungkin bukan penggila bola, namun kau sudah lama ingin tahu daya tarik sebuah stadion. Demi apa… kau bahkan belum pernah menginjak bandara! Maka kau harus pergi kali ini. Ditambah lagi kau bisa menyaksikan musim gugur. Itu juga salah satu impianmu, bukan? Nah, oleh karena itu, kau harus bersemangat!

Kau harus ke Inggris karena kau ingin bepergian. Dan kau sudah mulai berusaha dari sekarang. Walau dari hal kecil, namun ini sebuah permulaan. Bukankah kau percaya pada mukjizat dan keajaiban? Pesanku, berdoalah. Mungkin hal itu akan terjadi kali ini. Kita tidak pernah tahu, kan?

Tidak seperti yang ditulis banyak peserta, Inggris tidak menanti. Inggris berdiri angkuh karena ia tahu sedang diperjuangkan olehmu. Ia tidak perlu menunggu. Orang banyak akan datang padanya. Bahkan penduduknya sendiri tetap mengaguminya walau sudah tinggal di sana. Banyak pelancong sepertimu merasa mereka harus ke Inggris, walau sekali saja.

Dan memang kau harus ke sana. Jika kau tidak mencoba dan berhasil, baik melalui lomba ini atau kesempatan lain, kau akan menyesal. Sangat, sungguh, selalu menyesal. Kata seseorang yang lebih bijak dariku, pada akhirnya kau menyesali apa yang tidak pernah kau lakukan. Orang bijak itu benar. Dan apa kau ingin menambah “aku tidak pernah pergi ke Inggris” dalam daftar penyesalanmu? Kurasa tidak. Memang tidak. Maka kau harus ke sana.

Kau layak. Kau pantas. Apapun juga hasil yang kau terima, ketahuilah bahwa itu yang terbaik. Jika kau gagal kali ini, bersedihlah. Kau juga manusia. Namun jangan menyerah atau berpikir semua yang kau lakukan sia-sia. Sesungguhnya, cukup. Hanya saja, mungkin ada  orang-orang yang lebih memerlukannya darimu.

Mengapa kau harus ke Inggris?

Karena kau harus kesana untukku. Karena aku adalah kamu. Dan kau layak pergi ke negeri nun jauh di sana karena semua alasan yang sudah kuberitahukan di atas. Ya, semuanya. Dan lebih banyak alasan yang tak bisa kuungkapkan dalam kata-kata.

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Suatu Hari Nanti

Seluruh cerita ini fiksi. Semuanya… kecuali keinginan “aku” untuk pergi ke Inggris. Dan hobi gue yang melankolis ini untuk melamun. 😉

* * *

Aku dininabobokan oleh suara hujan,
rintik-rintik sedu.
Bagi orang lain membawa sendu,
tetapi bagiku menyenangkan.

Aku diam di atas tempat tidur, meresapi tenangnya hujan. Ingin rasanya membuka kedua daun jendela dan merasakan butir-butir air itu jatuh. Perlahan… perlahan… membasahi dan menyegarkan kulit. Menggoda sekali. Apalagi angin yang bertiup saat malam terasa begitu menyejukkan.

Hujan memang selalu membuatku merasa melankolis. Tetapi aku suka perasaan ini. Perasaan bahwa aku sedang memikirkan sesuatu. Saat aku melankolis, aku lebih memperhatikan sekitarku. Rasanya aku lebih hidup.

Seperti hari-hari lainnya, aku menulis dan membuat sketsa kasar di buku kecilku. Buku berwarna hitam polos dengan guratan spidol emas. Hanya guratan namaku sebagai tanda pemilik dan judul buku tersebut. Bisa kau bilang buku itu adalah buah bayanganku. Arsip aspirasi dan pikiran yang menghantui jika tak dituangkan dalam konstruksi abjad. Kebanyakan tentang suatu ambisi. Satu cita. Satu mimpi.

Ah, sudahlah. Kantuk yang sedari tadi mencoba bersemayam dalam kesadaran akhirnya menang. Yah, memang waktu sudah mendekati pergantian hari. Waktunya beristirahat.

Selamat malam.

* * *

Pagi yang berkabut tidak muram.
Malah ia membuat semuanya begitu magis,
dan kini aku berada di absis
terhadap garis realita,
karena ini tak terasa nyata.

London. Inggris. Sejak dahulu memang seperti ini. Bahkan entah berapa kali Sir Arthur Conan Doyle menyelipkan kabut yang terkenal ini ke dalam cerita-cerita Sherlock Holmes yang begitu kugemari. Yah, jika kau berkendara dan tiba-tiba turun kabut, terutama di jalur curam, memang akan terasa mengerikan. Tetapi bagiku, seorang penyendiri yang senang berfantasi, ini adalah tempat bernaung yang sempurna.

Hari ini kabut begitu tipis. Pas. Sempurna. Seperti berada di dunia dongeng. Hanya saja dunia ini terasa imajiner walau jelas-jelas aku bisa melihat siluet orang-orang berlalu-lalang. Membawa buku sketsa yang setia menemaniku berkelana, aku berjalan menuju London Eye. Memang sedikit jauh dari tempat tinggalku, tetapi sejak kecil aku memang kuat berjalan. Dan kuat makan. Hahaha….

Sejak kecil pula aku suka menggambar. Dan sudah lama aku ingin melakukan ini. Aku ingin berkeliling di Inggris—terutama London. Aku ingin merasakan suasana Museum Sherlock Holmes dan menggunakan London Underground. Semoga aku tidak tersesat. Tetapi, andai aku kehilangan arah—secara harafiah—aku tak keberatan, karena aku tahu aku akan menemukan dan ditemukan pengalaman yang pastinya berharga.

Aku ingin mengunjungi Big Ben, kehilangan kata-kata seraya mengeksplorasi Istana Buckingham, terpukau melihat karya-karya pahat di Trafalgar Square. Aku ingin duduk di Stasiun King’s Cross dan membayangkan aneka kesibukan yang pernah berlangsung di sana sebelum stasiun tersebut berhenti beroperasi.

Aku ingin merasakan budaya yang dikatakan begitu beraneka ragam, berpadu indah seperti buket bunga dan membaur seperti warna pelangi.  Aku sudah lama ingin mencoba English Breakfast dihidangkan langsung di Inggris. Aku ingin berkenalan dengan orang-orang baru dan menjalin pertemanan, mungkin persahabatan.

Tetapi, sebelum semua itu, aku ingin menaiki London Eye dan menggambar pemandangan dari atas sana. Apa saja yang mataku dapat tangkap dan teruskan ke kedua tanganku. Mungkin aku harus berputar di salah satu kapsul London Eye lebih dari satu kali. Tak apa. Akan kujalani dengan senang hati.

Ah! Itu dia! Bianglala impianku! Dengan hampir berlari aku cepat-cepat menghampirinya. Namun saat sudah dekat, ada seseorang yang tiba-tiba menghentikanku.

“Bangun! Ayo, cepat, bangun!”

Hah? Bangun?

* * *

Dan terkadang apa yang terasa begitu indah
memang bukan realita.
Sesungguhnya jalan menuju segala impian rumit,
namun aku takkan menyerah, walau itu sulit.
Suatu hari nanti, apa yang kukerjakan akan membawaku ke Inggris.
Lihat saja nanti.

“Hah?”

“Bangun, Nak!”

Ternyata aku tertidur. Semua tadi hanya mimpi. Ibuku dengan wajah lelah sedang berkacak pinggang di samping tempat tidur.

“Kamu itu, susah amat dibangunin!”

“Eh, iya, Bu. Maaf,” kataku, mencoba memperlihatkan rasa bersalah sebisa mungkin dengan kantuk yang masih menyelimuti. Ibu berdecak, tetapi sorot matanya menunjukkan pengertian.

“Yasudah. Ibu hanya mau bilang, nanti kamu jangan lupa membawa pisang goreng ke sekolah.”

“Oke, Bu. Aku… mau tidur lagi gapapa, ya?” kilahku, mengetahui matahari belum terlalu lama muncul dari ufuk timur. Bagaimana aku tahu? Dengan melihat jam, tentu saja. Ibu mengangguk dan menutup pintu kamarku.

Yah, beginilah realita. Sesungguhnya, keluargaku tidak miskin. Sama sekali tidak. Kami masih berkecukupan. Namun tidak berkelimpahan. Aku masih bisa memiliki smartphone walau bukan keluaran yang terbaru dan tercanggih. Masih bisa bersekolah dan membeli ini-itu sesekali walau tak bisa menjalani gaya hidup hedonis. Ibu suka menitipkan aneka makanan untuk dijual di kantin, dan hari ini ia membuat pisang goreng. Lumayan, hitung-hitung untuk menambah pemasukan. Memiliki persediaan uang lebih bukan hal yang buruk, kan?

Begitulah keadaan ekonomi keluargaku. Aku tak mungkin menyalahkan Ayah atau Ibu. Mereka begitu sayang padaku. Apa hakku menuntut lebih banyak dari mereka yang sudah saban hari berpeluh demi masa depanku?

Tetapi… boleh, kan, berandai? Aku ini pemimpi. Tetapi aku tak ingin menjadi sekedar pemimpi; aku ingin menjadi seseorang yang mau berjuang demi menggapai mimpi-mimpiku.

Salah satu mimpi itu adalah pergi ke Inggris. Tidak hari ini, atau besok, atau lusa. Bukan masalah. Aku tahu segala yang kuimpikan cukup berharga untuk ditunggu. Dan menunggu selagi aku berjuang hanya akan membuat saat aku menginjakkan kaki di Inggris nanti terasa makin berharga.

Ah, sekarang aku sudah tidak mengantuk lagi. Melamun tak pernah membuatku mengantuk, malah menjadi semangat. Bisa jadi karena imajinasiku yang tinggi. Entahlah.

Kuputuskan mengeluarkan buku hitamku dan lanjut menggambar. Isi buku hitamku ini… kau mau tahu? Isinya adalah aneka sketsa dan tulisan tentang Inggris. Gambar terakhir adalah sketsa London Eye dengan satu kalimat di bawahnya.

Inggris—suatu hari nanti.

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Twitter: @anonsibe

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