On Trengganuspeak and the Spirit of Trengganu

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Every Day Rainy Beats

In Kuala Trengganu the monsoon sings a tune that rattles on corrugated roofs that lulls cats to sleep. Fishermen home from the sea for a long snooze on the veranda, awaiting the wife's return with tapioca and stuff. But stuff is for the night, it's the ubi that now lifts the spirit, hissing out warm air in clouds as root turns translucent white. Tapioca and shaved coconut with salt from the sea now roaring mad, once the fisherman's ground, now his dread. Sounds of distant thunder beneath clouds rolling dark. Pedicab pushers sitting under tarpaulins rat-a-tatting with sudden drops, window panes shielding the constant patter, travellers curled in trishaws, sitting behind waterproof sheets, listening to rubber dipping into bumps in the road, sprays of rain squelching beneath lorry tires, and the chatter of rain-soaked trishawman drenched beneath his hat. The patter and the squelch and the bumps and the drones; the jabber and the damp. In a milieu of patter and beats. These are everyday parts, assembled in rhythm and sounds...

Budök budök mmaing wa
Atah jambatang
Lang kangök, lang kangök
dok terbang

Anök-anök dok nnöcak
Ssèmbak rötang
Jatoh ddebök, jatoh ddebök
ddalang lökang

Cik Mbong makang kerepok
ikang tambang
cicöh cuka, cicöh cuka
Awang Hitang

Cik Kalèh göhék tèksi
Ddalang hujang
Lapu lik-lak, lapu lik-lak
Ddalang pikirang

Ddölöh Hasang mamöh daging
Kena tulang
Ggögèh gigi, ggögèh gigi
Dök setarang

Kucing bapök masok dapor
Bahang ikang
Pacör-kecing, pacör kecing
Ddalang ppayang.

Illustration: Fly by Kite by Jayme McGowan. With thanks

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