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I write strange magic: prose, poetry, creative non-fiction. I'm also self-studying to get an MD, to make a significant, positive difference to the world.

All rights reserved by the essayist, Sulastri Binte Noordin

Written by a 15-year-old me, in response to “WorldView — A Matter of Public Trust (NEWSWEEK, July 26 2004 edition):

I think that public trust is not the only essential ingredient for the complex potion of democracy to work, and work effectively. In fact, an overdose of public trust in the government may very well lead to unwanted consequences. Components that the Newsweek article glaringly did not mention include the all-important public intelligence, which allows for such precautionary things as checks-and-balances.

First and foremost, democracy is a system whereby the people…


All rights reserved by the essayist, Sulastri Binte Noordin

The natural sciences make use of a traditional conception of theory. Under this conception, we propose hypotheses and test them to see if they are accurate descriptions of how things are in the World. Where there is correspondence, we are deemed to have gained knowledge about the World. All this presupposes a World ‘as it is out there’, and one which we can access. Because of the success and apparent practical value of the natural sciences, the human/social sciences seek to model themselves after the former, adopting the same methodology, and…


All rights reserved by the essayist, Sulastri Binte Noordin

The “Apology” is sometimes said to give the impression that Socrates was not taking his defence trial seriously. This paper will identify specifically how this impression arises. However, this paper will not dwell on whether or not Socrates did court ‘judicial suicide’. Assuming a lack of seriousness on Socrates’ part, this paper is more interested in considering if this attitude conflicts with the moral commitments he makes in the “Crito”. …


All rights reserved by the essayist, Sulastri Binte Noordin

Plato’s Republic (Book 1) deals with the concept of “justice”. In Allan Bloom’s The Republic[1], Bloom provides his interpretation of the original Platonic work. For the purposes of this paper, Bloom’s interpretation is taken to be a generally faithful, if summarised, report of the dialogues. This paper will turn its attention more to the logical structure of two specific arguments within Book 1 itself.

As per Bloom’s understanding[2], in Book 1 Socrates and Thrasymachus are at contrary positions regarding “justice”. By the end of their dialogue, Socrates has advocated an idealistic…


All rights reserved by the poet, Sulastri Binte Noordin

(To no one in particular.)

Someone begins krumping.

This is krump, my kind of dance. This is how it works.

Put all your anger and your sadness into your body and then move it all out — hard, fast, jerky.

And krump is solo work. You’re on your own.

***

An empty playground at night.

It begins with a misallocation of resources. It always does.

At the threshold of the very beginning they made us draw straws, fists clenched. …


All rights reserved by the playwright, Sulastri Binte Noordin

CURTAIN UP

A bus-stop at night. A public phone, a dustbin, a directory board. A streetlight next to it. A cityscape of tall buildings. Here and there, a few lighted windows. Behind, a road leading away into the distance. Further off, a junction. Traffic sounds, few and far between.

X lies on her side on a bench. She sleeps.
Y sits on another bench. He looks at a book he is holding.

A child passes behind the bus-stop with a skate-scooter. The child turns away into the road at the back…


All rights reserved by the writer, Sulastri Binte Noordin

The little girl in my memory stands on the side of the road, waiting for the madrasah “transport bus”, scratching the side of her head restlessly.

But the effort is futile. She can barely feel her finger-tips reaching into that area of scalp which she knows must be pinkish-red and covered with tiny, boil-like bulges by now. Urgh. If anything, the irritation is worsened.

It occurs to her that pain, even of the feeble, self-inflicted kind, might be an antidote to the itch, and thus she gives the itchy are several…


Because other people outside my family always think of her as a villain, but I think some villains are made, not born.

All rights reserved by the writer, Sulastri Binte Noordin

I call him … Scrooge.

He’s on his last legs.

These days his jaw hangs open

a loose hinge leading into

a dry quivery cave.

Morsels of food move around in it

for minutes on end

and the children, giving up, take them out again.

Thursday night they brought in

some foolish instrument with black buttons.

They wanted to remember his voice.

Marry again, he said. Someone to care…


All rights reserved by the writer, Sulastri Binte Noordin

“Banksy” is the tag used by a UK-based stencilled graffiti artist. He roams around London (and other places around the world now) creating street art, often of a political nature. A particularly memorable piece, aerosol-sprayed onto the West Bank barrier, depicts a “terrorist” figure throwing not a bomb, but a bouquet of flowers. Sometimes, he sneaks into the hallowed walls of famous galleries such as the Tate Britain and hangs his works up side-by-side with the other pieces, for subversion.

The question is, does he create art — or is it…


A previously untold perspective from a child point’s of view — adult me, talking to a past self in kindergarten.

All rights reserved by the writer, Sulastri Binte Noordin.

“Big Ball” by Jeremy Roof is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Things came to you in dribs and drabs.

I know, because I was there.

In school races you walked to the finish line, because you didn’t see the point.

Then there was that horse story your daddy told.

I don’t know if it was a prize horse, or a fed-up horse, or where on earth it was, really,

but I know you asked which leg got hurt, which leg exactly, and…

Sulastri Noordin

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