Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Suffer No More, Little Children

THE fresh mound of red earth, at the far corner of the cemetery to the right, just beside the retaining wall dividing the gravesite and the kampong lane beyond it, has been there since Friday.

I can’t help but notice it every dawn since, not only because it is in my direct line of vision the moment I slide open my balcony doors to invite the new day in, but also because of the seeming neglect of it all.

No flower petals strewn upon it, no pudding bush planted onto it. No stone marker, however modest. Nothing but bare earth, red and upturned, now slowly settling into evenness.

When they started digging the grave on Friday morning, I intuitively knew who it was for, and I hazarded a guess that the burial would be made after Friday prayers. I was spot on.

Barely was prayer over when a meagre procession of men carrying a coffin snaked though the entire length of the cemetery to the far end of this quiet little corner of God’s acre on earth.

From my perch ten floors up I watched with sorrow, for nestling in the simple wooden case were the pitiful remains of two little children, charred beyond recognition.

The little boys perished trying to escape a blazing fire that gutted a two-storey makeshift wooden structure, housing some 50 orphans and destitute children in Kampung Sungai Pencala last Thursday evening.

Why oh why, I asked myself, must they be interred right against the dividing wall on the far right, markedly removed from the cluster of existing graves on the left side of the cemetery?

Is it because one was an orphan and the other a destitute child that even in death they didn’t ‘belong’? Please tell me it is not so.

My heart bled for the innocent souls of the departed, who lived and died as eternal friends, buried in a diminutive single grave dug for two.

But I didn't grieve for long, for they are at peace now. They have gone Home. They are with God; they belong to Heaven. Al-Fatihah.



18 comments:

bergen said...

Don't worry about it, ma'am. What really matters is not what we see on top of the earth mound. It's underneath that matters most. Some kubur adalah salah satu dari lubang-lubang neraka. Ada kubur adalah salah satu dari taman-taman syurga.

You can put a balinese structure on top with flickering lights and lampu kaler2 and bling2. Kat bawah semua urusan malaikat yang jaga kubur, samada kena godang atau kena goreng, atau kena pupuk dan di belai dengan ayat2 indah dari Al-qur'an.

The kubur of those two children may look da'if kat atas, compared to others. Tapi kat bawah sana, mereka mungkin lebih mulia dari kubur yang paling cantik kat atas sini.

Kak Teh said...

Al Fatehah to all the little ones, and to all of them.

CN said...

Salah seorang mangsa, Fairus Adam, ada mak dan paknya yang tinggal di rumah anak yatim/fakir miskin tersebut.
Agaknya, depa dalam usaha meletakkan batu nesan.. mungkin depa tak berduit (batu nesan mahal kat KL ??)..... Harap-harap ada yang bermurah hati..belikan batu nesan utk kubur arwah-arwah tersebut..
Al-Fateha..

Kama At-Tarawis said...

CN - yes dear, one of the victims tu bapaknya caretaker kat rumah anak yatim & fakir miskin tu. the saddest part was the child's mother was instrumental in rescuing almost all the 51 kids - leading them out one by one, tapi anak dia sendiri tertinggal.

I know gombak umno has taken the first step to bena balik rumah tu - brick building. bagus lah. as for the kubur, i hope depa letak nesan untuk tanda. I am waiting for baitulmal to do something. duit depa berpuluh juta. wait and see.

Pi Bani said...

Takpe lah Kak Puteri, they are at a better place, that's for sure.

Kama At-Tarawis said...

Saya marah betul dengan Baitulmal, Pi. Duit zakat, fitrah berpuluh juta tapi masih ramai orang Islam daif. Takkan nak tunggu TV3 highlight dalam Bersama Mu baru nak pi tolong? What kind of system do they have? Inefficient sungguh.

Pi Bani said...

Red-tape terover-over Kak Puteri. Poor families yang I handle lagi teruk, because they have HIV, puas kena interrogate instead of interview. Sampai menangis-nangis some of my clients.

I think their main problem is depa tak turun padang cari orang susah. Depa dok tunggu orang susah cari depa. Tu pasai keluar TV baru depa tolong - the TV people tolong buatkan kerja untuk depa.

Yang we all tolong ni, tak mau keluar TV pasal depa ada HIV. And since tak keluar TV, cakap we all pun depa tak berapa pakai. Mulalah red-tape punya banyak nak approve punyalah payah. I think kalau ada orang tak cukup makan, by the time approve, dah mati kebuloq!

lenzaidi said...

Kama- you have eyes so observing, heart so soft and endearing and a real scribe to boot!!Im helplessly taken.

Bergen-cant agree more with you. Those be destitute or orphaned died in the fire, are definitely promised heaven.

Kama-I have this lil' discussion with hubby over wang zakat the other night, we used to pay diligently every before the 1st of Syawal.My late FIL ( was a lumberjack in Mukah, Sarawak with 7small mouths to feed )dengan bermurah/ikhlas hati paid up on time to the Mosque authority even consciously knowing there isnt any to serve on the dining table. Hubby was raged till today because he (most of us) never know what happen to the money collected and rebelled todate they should be the receipient.

Kama- I too have this small talk about our small contribution to baitulmal( a meagre cut though, from our salary but million government servants contribution which means a handsome proceeds.)

Kama- And then i also contribute monthly meagre rm50.00 to YADIN.
I guess its small contribution by many but would amount to million ringgit.

And to know those destitute and orphaned still live in a fire/flood prone wooden dormitory or houses,while we in comfort is still a disturbing scene to who cares.
sigh:-(

Kama At-Tarawis said...

Len - maybe because I'm just an old woman easily touched by little things. I hv been told I worry unnecessarily, especially about Baitulmal's money. let them tangguhlah,kata depa to me. but deep in my heart, i feel guilty for not being able to do more. i think i hv to reconsider bayar zakat fitrah kat baitulmal. maybe lebih afdal sedekah terus kat yg memerlukan.

Kama At-Tarawis said...

Pi - you are right. TV3 dok buat kerja depa. might as well suruh TV3 kutip zakat... hisyy..hot tak hilang bila cakap pasai topic ni..hehehe

lenzaidi said...

Kama,
Perhaps its time for you to think and do more for yourself and at the same time not forgeting to those close to your heart.
We do understand, Your job sees alot of sufferings, pains the truth and lies so its not wrong for you to think for others.And so the talents you crafted over the years to write beautifully about life many unknown to us, in your beautiful words and touching others who frequented and read your space.Rezeki pada kita dapat menikmati madah pena kama, Pada hal tak kenal sangat pun Puteri Kama.Once again thank you Kama.

mamasita said...

Memang menyedihkan..but they have gone to heaven..InsyaAllah.
Kita insaf sekejap bila mendengar peristiwa macam ni.Termenung pun ye.Kita turut sedih dan bersyukur dapat bela anak2 kita dengan sebaik mungkin.Kita bersyukur rezki kita Alhamdullillah walaupun bukan jutawan.Hiba betul dengar nasib kanak2 yang malang.Kesian betul tengok mana2 orang yang miskin.I wish we had the means to help the poor easily..

Kak Teh said...

Puteri, I went back to look at the archives, and search for the story. Found it. It is indeed sad. And what a tragic end. Al Fatehah to the little angels.

Anonymous said...

Dear Sis, I dah stop bayar zakat kat Baitulmal. Sakit hati aja. Elok-elok nak dapat pahala jadi tak berkat. Paling sakit hati bila they all boleh belanja beratus ribu untuk print kalender bagi kat pemberi zakat. Tu tak campur duit untuk pos tu. Dulu tiap-tiap tahun I mesti dapat punya siap dengan reminder sekali. Pi dah!!! Kalau bagi anak yatim dan janda makan, lagi bagus. Now I bagi direct pada those yang I rasa memerlukan. Dulu alasan I, sibuk. Dah bayar kat Baitulmal, lantak dia oranglah nak salurkan ke mana. Tapi kita ni nanti kalau dah tak dapat nak tambah amal lagi i.e. dah mati, mesti menyesal kalau kita tak buat/beri more than we have already given. Tu yang tak sanggup nak fikir/tanggung tu. Kalau tengok keliling, ramai yang memerlukan. Kadangkala jiran sendiri cuma kita aja tak peka. Contohnya we all rasa lebih puas bawa anak-anak yatim beli kelengkapan sekolah atau bayarkan ansuran kereta ibu tunggal dari beri duit pada Baitulmal. Insyallah dengan cara ni zakat sampai ke tangan group 'sasaran'.

cn said...

Yang selalu saya buat..
bila ada wang lebih yang cukup haul untuk dizakatkan (biasanya jarang ada wang lebih pun..hehehehe), jalan yang mudah..kumpul budak-budak miskin kat sekolah, beri wang kat ustazah, ataupun beli sendiri keperluan budak-budak tersebut.Biasanya, wang zakat yang diberi akan dibelanjakan untuk membeli baju, buku-buku dan bayaran yuran mereka.
Bukan tak percaya kepada Baitulmal, tetapi lebih puas dapat tengok ke mana duit zakat saya dibelanjakan, terutama selepas tengok budak-budak miskin berbaju dan berkasut baru ke sekolah, buku-buku yang diperlukan telah sedia digunakan...
Oleh itu, jalan mudah untuk berzakat, hubungi mana-mana sekolah (biasanya bukan sekolah elit atau swasta..sekolah kampung yang daif lebih mudah )kumpul budak-budak miskin di sekolah tersebut, berikan bantuan..niat berzakat, cukup disaksikan oleh ustazah dan ustaz sekolah berkenaan.
InsyaAllah, yang penting zakat sampai ke tangan penerima..tanpa bantuan baitulmal yang penuh dengan karenah birokrasi..

Elviza said...

While I weep in the safe confinement of my office, I can't help but notice the flawless writing.

You have set a benchmark unattainable to foolish, aspiring writer like me.

Until our coffee date. Shall we invite other people, Kak?

Kama At-Tarawis said...

CN - cikgu, what a wonderful idea. Maybe we should contact you in the future for assistance.TQ.

Elviza - such kind words. Of course we shall hv others with us for coffee. you do the honours..i am fine any which way.

m00n said...

I am weting for de' inbitesyen! Inbait me yer akak!! I laik free derink neh!!