Sunday, June 30, 2013

Excerpt from a satire I wrote in 1994 -

Something I wrote in 1994 -

But as She-Monkey started to grow up, things were not so happy in Monkey Land.  For one thing, Heaven had decreed that Monkey Land belonged only to True Red Bottoms.

She-Monkey goes West - a book length satire by K.M.Kaung -

This script was a Pew Finalist Script.  The judges wrote that they were happy to see that the literature of oppression in Burma after 1962 was starting to be written.

Copyright Kyi May Kaung.

Burmese junta's attack dogs -

Have no fear, one day they will throw their own attack dog to the dogs - A few years ago there was the strong rumor that they had gotten rid of the "founder of the Swan Arh Shin"  "Possessors of Strength" which the international media called Hitlerite brown shirts, because he came to know too much.

People and press, where is your collective memory? - This was barely 5 years ago -

If you think things will change just by chanting "change, change, change" you must be living in a folk tale like Monkey -

kmk

Disappearing foods from Himal Southasia

This is super - disappearing S. Asian foods and recipes how to make them -

http://www.himalmag.com/component/content/article/5169-disappearing-foods-.html

Warning - it's not as easy as it sounds - making masala dosa (to-shay) or appom (ahr pone) or mon sein paung (also Sri Lankan) "string hoppers?" is almost impossible -

I tried masala dosa from a mix, and did not get it

My Ceylon Tamil friend, Aunty Rani, wife of a judge (she does not like the name Sri Lanka) showed me how to make the last 2, and I still have the pan for appom, but have given up.

Masala Dosa I can usually buy in an Indian restaurant.

The other two - well - I can remember --

Cho Kha, where are you, I need you to research in Burma -

Kyi May Kaung -

Aung San Suu Kyi of Burma: A Strange Collection of Clear Victories by Kyi May Kaung

Aung San Suu Kyi of Burma:  A Strange Collection of Clear Victories by Kyi May Kaung - first draft written in Nov. 2012 - an edited version was published in International Gallerie -

During his historic six-hour visit to Rangoon, Burma, newly re-elected U.S. President Barack Obama mispronounced Aung San Suu Kyi’s name twice, calling her “Aung Yann Suu Kyi” – one almost saw Suu Kyi hiding her wince.
Yann means “reckless.”
Her real name is:
Aung San – from her famous father – the George Washington of Burma.
Aung = victory or victorious
San= strange, glorious or unique, rare or scarce.
Suu—her own given name, based on the day of the week on which she was born, and the name of Aung San’s mother, whose father was hanged by the British during the Saya San uprising of 1920.
Kyi – based on her mother’s name.
As Jack Healey, the former director of Amnesty International said, “We should learn how to pronounce her name correctly.”
Be that as it may, on Nov 13, 2010, a week after the rigged election, the junta released her from her third bout of house arrest, which had started from a roadside ambush – and is now known as the Depayin Massacre.
Daw Suu was truly between a rock and a hard place.  She cannot be blamed for having sent out feelers that she could help get sanctions lifted in exchange for being treated better by the junta, now hiding behind its front man, the so-called “moderate” PM turned president.

Thein Sein went to see her.   When Obama called her by phone this time last year, she had only to say “I trust him.  I think I can work with him,” for him to send Secretary of State Mrs. Hilary Clinton.  (See my poem in Foreign Policy in Focus, In the Garden by the Lake.)
This unleashed an unreasonable euphoria which has only now started to wear a bit thin as BBC 4 uncovers mass graves in Western Burma, where a genocide against the Muslim Rohingya community has been going on since June, even as Suu Kyi traveled internationally and gave impeccable speeches.  In the northeast of Burma, the junta, now in civilian dress, broke a 17 year ceasefire.
What are the Lady’s prospects?
One should note, she did not win a majority in the April 1 “April Fools’ Day” by-elections -- she won the majority of the few seats she and her party were allowed to contest.  Nevertheless, she campaigned all over the country and won – once again demonstrating her popularity.
But it is not about popularity, is it?
It is about what the junta allows to happen in Burma.
What seems to have happened is due to a coincidence of wants and needs by major actors:
Suu Kyi’s situation was a no-win one.
The junta itself was said to have been scared of what happened in the Middle East, and wanted an exit and an out.
The USA and Europe are in the throes of a major recession – the United States itself hugely indebted to China, which is holding the bulk of its national debt or treasury bills.  The foreign media and the Burmese exile media are compromised as they have apparently traded access for “doing PR for the junta.”
But the Lady is losing patience again – she said “Nothing will happen if the constitution is not changed.” She also said two days ago -- “The military is already the most powerful entity in the country.  We in the parliament (hluttaw) should not make decisions that increase its power.”
Her prospects over-all are not good. 
One can argue that they never were and I used to think she has a martyr complex.
She can surely win in 2015. 
But then, what?
Every day on Burmese language news from VOA and RFA, we see tearful farmers whose land has been taken by the thousands of acres by the junta cronies.  We see miners in equal desperation.  We see workers, each one a Fantine out of Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables, who sold her hair, her teeth and her body to stay alive.
Maybe the junta will let Suu win, and then let her “handle” these deep-seated structural and systemic (to do with the system) changes.
Then everyone will hate her.  Already there’s a growing chorus of those who think she did not speak up forcibly enough about the plight of the Rohingya.
Like all politicians, she will, when she comes to power, have to pay off supporters.  Then she can easily be accused of corruption as Benazir Bhutto was.
I don’t wish to sound flippant or disrespectful – she is one of my greatest heroes.
But some days I think she should leave and carve out a life for herself as an international figure who is deeply respected.
                                                         *





 



"Fakebook in Burma" (The Irrawaddy) is a misleading title -

"Fakebook in Burma" is a misleading title -  people in Burma use fake names out of fear of the junta for revealing the truth - Junta-aligned people use it to spy on and infiltrate democracy networks - Some people use it just for innocent and naive or commercial reasons.

See --

http://www.irrawaddy.org/archives/38770#.Uc4PRjJHxtY.twitter

Friday, June 28, 2013

Documentary on Bayingyi (Portuguese Burmese) in Burma -

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=6HWMj-7DPhg#at=131

Another "Indian" sighting from K.M.Kaung's upcoming novel Wolf --

Another "Indian" sighting from K.M. Kaung's upcoming novel Wolf -

This is a Hindu mason, not a Muslim --

"Meizalli ate his own food because he was Indian.  It made him stronger.  He told us he rolled out chapattis and cooked them on a griddle every night after his work supervising day laborers on building sites."

Copyright Kyi May Kaung -

https://www.createspace.com/4232789?ref=1147694&utm_id=6026

David Baldacci's political thriller set in Lafayette Square, DC -

For a political thriller set in DC's Lafayette Square Park, where I did a reading last Sat. read David Baldacci's Hell's Corner - I "met" him briefly when he gave a keynote speech at The Northern Virginia Review, which published 3 of my short stories and gave me a Best in Show prize for my story Black Rice and my painting Mars Ranger - but not the year that Baldacci came -

Thursday, June 27, 2013

dendrobium thein sein poem by ko ko thett and kyi may kaung on Union of M blog

Whoa whoa whoa for today -

was just thinking to repost Ko Ko Thett's and my joint poem  - Dendrobium Thein Sein - and look where I found it - in the most unlikely place - and with the original illustration we found too - Made my day!

http://republicoftheunionofmyanmar.blogspot.com/2012/09/dendrobium-thein-sein.html

"Indian" excerpt from K.M.Kaung's upcoming novel Wolf -



I thought Ma Hninzi was just wonderful even though the age of a grown-up.  She was like the two comedians, U Pallata (paratha flat bread) and U Nanpya (naan flat bread).  
Paratha was a golden, crusted luxury bread held together by ghee or clarified butter, spread between parchment-thin layers of dough before baking.  Naan was a butter-less bread baked on the inside walls of a mud-earth-molded oven.  But to compensate or overcompensate for the lack of butter, naan had big airy holes like blisters four inches in diameter. 
Both were delicious. 
I was very fond of them, but they were luxuries.  We weren’t an Indian family, though I was once asked when I was on the run if I was a Mus or Muslim (maybe due to my White-Moghul facial features).  I had run into a house in Rangoon near the Sulé Pagoda, where a group of Muslims were holding a funeral wake. 
We did not know how to make these breads at home.  General Ne Win always boasted how Socialist he was, he ate simple food like naan and pèbyoke (boiled beans)[i] every morning, but apparently in his exaggerated Burmese-ness, he forgot naan is an Indian food. 
Ko Ko said this was all bullshit.  He’d heard from his classmates that after dinner, the First Family led by the Westernized Kitty, all ate chocolate and Western-style desserts. 
Maybe Ne Win forgot or didn’t know how much we had gained from India to our west in terms of art and culture, even our Theravada Buddhism[ii]. 
                                                               *
At fifteen, I knew more than Ne Win because I had read a book called What the Buddha Taught, by the Buddhist writer from Ceylon, Walpola Rahula, in its Burmese translation.

Copyright - Kyi May Kaung (K.M.Kaung)


[i] Also Indian.  In the USA, I found out the small, round beans are called vattana beans.
[ii] The old school or original Buddhism of the Elders or Theras.  Only Burma, Thailand and Sri Lanka practice this form of Buddhism. 

Sign petition United to end Apartheid and Genocide in Burma -

http://www.change.org/fr/p%C3%A9titions/united-to-end-the-silence-on-apartheid-and-ethnic-cleansing-in-burma-rohingya

Nelson Mandela on life support -

http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/26/world/africa/south-africa-mandela

My water convolvulas sprouteth - from my Facebook page -

Whoa whoa whoa -

My water convolvulas (ka zun ywet) is sprouting -

A week ago I bought a big bunch from an Asian grocery - I don't know how much a small bunch is now in kyat - but this was maybe $1.50? and about the equivalent ten Burmese bunches.  :)

I cooked it three ways and put the stems in a glass that came with my Mother's Day Roses - now after a few days roots and little sprouts are out -

I was inspired by my Karen friend who made a fake bog with pool liner to plant it in Pennsylvania, in the summer of course.

Now I put some soil in a glass jug that I can't use anymore as the rim is chipped - and I will make a bog in a plastic basin from the time when I had a terrible medical emergency 20 years ago and was bleeding in my gut.

I read about a woman whose son built her a house, where she continues her own 19th century life style, keeping chickens and making her own candles!

I tried making my own mango pickle but it does/did not work - The only green mangoes I found - and I only see them if I am lucky every year or 2 or 3 years in the Southern State, are either too old ( a se shet thwar pyee) or the wrong type -  They have big Gs soft-penned on the skin -

anyway, it did not work, the skin is too thick and like leather - so now I am going to try green "ripe" mangoes.

The first trial this summer, the Residency co-director threw them out, as the mangoes went bad as I could not put them in the sun, as it rained three days in a row.

Imagine, in Burma my grandmother made 300 at a time -

now I can't even make 3.  Of course she had 3 people at least helping her, and "made it with her mouth and money."  This grandmother had plenty of money, but not much honey.

About the woman with chickens - she planted water lilies in an old chamber pot.

So that's why I am trying with the ka zun ywet.

Stay tuned, more later.

Copyright Kyi May Kaung.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Burma - current trend of shoot the messenger (Time Magazine)

Current trend - shoot the messenger (Time Magazine) will do no good, as it deflects attention from the real situation and wastes energy that would be better deployed condemning and exposing the racist actions -

Dr. Maung Zarni always says Burmese have an inherent racist streak, and I found it very disturbing to hear some of my close friends and colleagues come up with the junta's line "They came in from Bangladesh and they breed too much."

What about Ne Win's policies 1962-1988 of no birth control so there would be a lot of Burmans to counter the Chinese population -

a lot of women in Burma of all ethnicities have died due to back alley abortions.

My friends and I are looking at the issues closely, but I don't have permission to say more, and so will not.

For the moment as thinking people all born with a brain you should all use your head and not swallow the junta bait of a visa to Burma and their propaganda hook line and sinker -

for you all know what happens to gullible and panicky fish - they get netted and processed into smelly ngapi and ngan pya ye --

kmk

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Discussion on Elie Kedourie and (Arab) nationalism - from my Facebook page

From Wikiepedia on Elie Kedourie -

"Kedourie was critical of Marxist interpretations of history and of nationalism, which he described as 'anti-individualist, despotic, racist, and violent'. He claimed they had turned the Middle East into 'a wilderness of tigers'."
Like · · Promote ·
  • Joseph Allchin what was his alternative to Arab nationalism? Interesting stuff with regards the current strife
  • Kyi May Kaung Hi Joseph - I have not read where Kedourie suggested alternatives, but by the fact that he left the Middle East entirely, and lived and worked in UK (he went to LSE after Oxford did not give him a Ph.D. - see wiki above) I would say he liked liberal democracy and a secular system - My favorite professor for instance (I don't want to mention him by name) has no religion as far as I know, but remains the most ethical person I know - and I have known him abt 50 years now - My own parents were secular and so am I - maybe you will find the answer in Irshad's Head to Head intv above with Al Jazeera - That said, I am happy with all your responses to the Kedourie quote - which means I chose my friends wisely on FB - I would not wish to waste my time talking to bigots.

Elie Kedourie - the magnificent -

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elie_Kedourie

Quote of the day - from Elie Kedourie on nationalism and racism -

Quote of the Day - from renowned Iraqi-born political scientist - the late Elie Kedourie  - "There is a fine line between nationalism and racism."

Actually Kedourie was an Iraqui Jew who taught pol. sci. in London -

When I posted this quote in Irrawaddy some years ago, all the jumping jack macho Burmese men said they did not understand -

Well, you don't understand at your own peril. 

Wait till your house is burned because your skin is polka dot and you worship trees, while majority worships clouds -and has zebra striped skin -

By the way, a great way to understand life, politics, religion etc. is to read George R.R. Martin's The Song of Ice and Fire series - now it is on HBO - but I prefer the books.

Kyi May Kaung (Ph.D.)

A terrible mind had better be wasted --

A terrible mind had better be wasted - step into the list-making mind of the Burmese bin Ladin and be horrified -

http://indiatoday.intoday.in/story/myanmar-communal-violence-profile-of-buddhist-leader/1/268181.htmlhttp://indiatoday.intoday.in/story/myanmar-communal-violence-profile-of-buddhist-leader/1/268181.html

Monday, June 24, 2013

Visit me on Facebook folks - thanks for reading this blog too --

https://www.facebook.com/kyi.m.kaung

To whet your appetite - quote from K.M.Kaung's upcoming novel Wolf -

To whet your appetite -

quote from my upcoming novel Wolf -

"Mother fried the onions with turmeric and roasted the soy bean powder in a clean dry fry pan till the powder smelled nutty on Thursday."



Kyi May Kaung

Quote of the Day - from Ann Sexton -

Quote of the Day --

"With my poetry I wooed everyone, even my mother."

Ann Sexton -

http://www.poets.org/poet.php/prmPID/14

K.M.Kaung's novella Black Rice --

K.M. Kaung's novella Black Rice is about an extremely dark-skinned man who is adopted by a pale family in Burma.  His tormented coming of age coincides with the outbreak of multicolored insurgencies in Burma a year before independence from the British in 1948. 

Follow him from the jungle where he goes to escape an unhappy family situation to a surprise event and ending in the gorgeous, lyrical, visual prose of poet and political scientist K.M.Kaung --

 http://www.amazon.com/Black-Rice-Novella-K-Kaung/dp/0615797520

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Kyi May Kaung's poem "Airplane"

My reading in Lafayette Square -
June 22, 2012

Here is the poem - 

Intro:  The Kama Sutra has a section on torture at the end - Shah Jahan, of course, built the Taj Mahal, but was imprisoned and tortured there by his son and successor Aurangzeb - The other references such as "airplane" - "walking on a seashore", "iron roads peeling" and "wet submarine" are based on actual torture methods and positions based on survivor accounts.  I wrote this poem in 1994. 

Airplane -

Twenty forms of torture
starting from the Kama Sutra
the body is lashed by the hair
till all the bones break
without
breaking the skin -
the Indic monarchs
were nothing
if not
cruel.

In a jataka
the son
tortured his father
cut the soles of his feet
packing them
in salt.

Shah Jahan
in the Red Fort
gazing at the Taj Mahal
Mumtaz Mahal
those who die sooner
escape sooner

some day I just might
jump from this window

arms spread spun from the ceiling
from a fan
walking on a seashore
of broken glass
shards.

The punishment
never fits
the crime.
Irons roads
peeling
the skin
from my shins --
wet submarine
my head submerged
till I struggle up
my head
about to burst --

the kindest are
the most cruel.

Copyright Kyi May Kaung -

My poetry chapbooks Pelted with Petals:  The Burmese Poems and Tibetan Tanka are $5 and $7 respectively, + postage and handling -

Friday, June 21, 2013

Quote from Activist Terry Evans in Irrawaddy on Burma's Sr Gen Than Shwe and his legacy

Quote from Activist Terry Evans - on Aung Zaw's 10th article on Sr Gen Than Shwe and his legacy - see Irrawaddy -

Terry Evans Friday, May 10, 2013 - 9:43 am   

"Both history and economic theory prove conclusively that centrally-planned economies lower the standard of living for everyone except government elites. Historically, centralized economic planning goes hand in hand with hardship and bloodshed – Than Shwe’s legacy will be to see him and his family reviled."


Thanks, Terry, just what I said in my 1994 Ph.D. dissertation.

KMK

Experimental art gallery in Rangoon -

http://www.irrawaddy.org/archives/36151

Interesting article on Yadana Nat Me - Princess of Burma - (in Burmese)

http://www.myatshu.com/2013/06/21/%E1%80%9B%E1%80%90%E1%80%94%E1%80%AC%E1%80%94%E1%80%90%E1%80%B9%E1%80%99%E1%80%9A%E1%80%B9%E1%82%8F%E1%80%BD%E1%80%84%E1%80%B9%E1%80%B7-%E1%80%81%E1%80%8F%E1%80%90%E1%80%AC/#more-4014

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Security printers De La Rue - which still print UK pounds sterling for the Bank of England -

and once printed Burma's money - 1947- 1950 and onwards, until 60s when Ne Win printed his own money inside Burma -

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/De_La_Rue

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

U Putavansa who opposes notorious 969 movement - speaks up -

Monk who opposes 969 says its nonsense for one religion to oppose another -

"We still have four major religions all over the world. It’s nonsense in this globalized world to encourage people to discriminate against one religion in favor of another. That idea also diverts from our democratization process. It will prevent us (from) catching up with the rest of the world . . .

from Irrawaddy 6-19-2013

Too much too soon - ILO removes restrictions on Burma -

http://www.irrawaddy.org/archives/37901#comment-32749

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

It's going from the frying pan to the fire in Burma with regard to "the Muslim Issue"

It's going from the frying pan to the fire, as regards Burmese military government and their invented "Muslim issue."

First the fundamentalist monk is allowed to "draft a law" that says Buddhist women must seek permission to marry Muslims, and if they don't they can be arrested and their property taken - about the only voice speaking up here is Zin Mar Aung -

and now (see below) 2 Muslim women arrested and sentenced to 2 years each for "sparking violence"

and we hear no outright condemnations of so called reformist govt.

It's getting worse than Iran's morality police - men and women patting down veiled women -

if this "monk" is allowed to go on - I can see their trick monkey playing tricks on them soon (thu to hmyauk te myauk, thu to pyan chauk)

one can only surmise that under that deadpan "reformist" face resides an awful racist, sexist mind set.

And to think that so many religions have lived side by side in South and SE Asia for so long - thousands of years.

In 1978, when I read in Time magazine while I was still in Burma that Khomeini had come into power, I realized right away that Iran would slip back into the middle ages.

Burma will be the same - just material wealth with no justice, no human rights will be even worse.

2 Muslim women sentenced to 2 years each for "sparking violence"

http://www.irrawaddy.org/archives/37783

yeah - blame the victims and throw them in prison -

Airborne laser (lider) shows a bustling city once existed under Cambodian ruins

http://www.irrawaddy.org/archives/37730#.UcFKVXvtzyA.twitter

Friday, June 14, 2013

New review of K.M. Kaung's novella Black Rice by Zorro - on Amazon site - link below

New review on my novella Black Rice by Zorro -

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely a Must-Read! June 13, 2013
By Zorro
Format:Paperback


It is a very touching and moving story set in Burma's civil war. A rare fiction book that is quite interestingly mixed with genuine facts about Burma's longest internal conflicts.

The best part is the summary execution of Burmese soldiers in the jungle and ......

Have no doubt everyone will read it all in one sitting. I wish the story was much longer. I can't wait to read her next book!

link where you can buy K.M.Kaung's novella Black Rice - abt summary executions in Burma 1947

http://www.amazon.com/Black-Rice-Novella-K-Kaung/dp/0615797520

also read the latest reviews - here.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Burma economic change special BBC panel in Naypyitaw

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dZ23eTj_S6s

not bad or pretty good - but not great

BBC panel and audience are skewed in that only those interested in, i.e. with a vested interest in "change" are in Burma and in the room.

kmk

Edward Snowden Whistle Blower -

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/09/edward-snowden-nsa-whistleblower-surveillance?CMP=twt_gu

Report on "Burmese moment" from 2 infuential people -

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/kt-article-display-1.asp?xfile=data%2Fopinion%2F2013%2FJune%2Fopinion_June21.xml&section=opinion

How irrelevant all this stuff is - not the first time I commented on sorry state of Burma Studies

How irrelevant all this stuff is -

Marie Lall has been characterized by a committed Burma Watcher as "the most terrible person (and sycophant) I ever met" and the linguists, unlike Noam Chomsky - are largely in their own world.

This is the major problem with Burma studies today - Josef Silverstein in 2002 said "Not another study that counts the number of stitches per square inch in a piece of quilting" - He said this at an AAS seminar in DC to honor his lifetime achievement in Burma Studies.

I do respect Justin and Magnus - but conclusion has to be "not worth reading this issue of Journal of Burma Studies" unless I am looking for references for fiction about head hunters.

KMK

attachment copy follows -

June 11, 2013

TOC Journal of Burma Studies - volume 17, issue 1, now available online
**********************************************************************
From: "Eunice Low Soe Ching,

The Table of Contents for The Journal of Burma Studies Volume 17 Number 1
(June 2013) is below. The Journal is now available online through
university libraries that subscribe to Project MUSE (most North American
universities do). NUS Press publishes this Journal on behalf of the Center
for Burma Studies at Northern Illinois University.


Eunice Low

EDITOR
NUS Press
National University of Singapore


Articles

       Special Section on the Wa
         Introduction to Wa Studies
         Magnus Fiskesjö

         A Themed Selection of Wa Proverbs and Sayings
         Justin Watkins

         Phonological Outline of the Vo Dialect
         Atsushi Yamada

         Clustered Communities and Transportation Routes: The Wa Lands
Neighboring the Lahu and the Dai on the Frontier
         Jianxiong Ma

         To Be at One with Drums: Social Order and Headhunting among the
Wa of China
         Bernard Formoso

         The Wa Authority and Good Governance, 1989-2007
         Ronald D. Renard

Myanmar: The 2011 Elections and Political Participation
Marie Lall and Hla Hla Win

Scholarly Curiosities
An Ethnographic Illustration of Wa People in British Burma during the
Early 20th Century: Notes on a Shan Album from the NIU Burma Collection,
with Reference to Similar Illustrations from Other Sources
Catherine Raymond


Sunday, June 09, 2013

Writers, writing and the home country - from my Facebook page -

Min Ko Naing's paintings? not sure -
  • Shin Min and Thein Gi like this.
  • Myo Nyunt myo nyunt: when will you be in Burma. I just realised that, story telling, is the art of imagination and some of the "reality" a person sees-observes-- hear using the sense of the moment. As time passes one fathoms into ones memory-- very murky is the conscious, but one tries tomake it clear for ones thought (but cannot PWL-- devels, nuts. ghosts maybe our imaginations running wild-- grotesque). Now I realised why we are trapped as a people, a culture SMILE our history does not exist. But in the novels, storys, poems or the narratives , discourses others have sculpted, scripted , written. AAh poetry feelings, love/hate comes to mind. Just the ramblings of a old Burmese ( people think I am mad when I just utter Myanmar--). Best
  • Kyi May Kaung For me, all my fears "come out" in my nightmares when happen in early morning during REM (rapid Eye Movement) sleep - They involve houses falling down, me trying to warn people whose eyes are closed, people refusing to be saved walking backwards into the waves - etc.
  • Kyi May Kaung Tony Kushner, author of play Angels in America, wrote: "Pay attention to the geography of your dreams."
  • Kyi May Kaung I don't know why people ask me when I will be in Burma - I have no need to go - like many writers I "carry Burma" etc with me - I was just interviewed 2 days ago abt FDI in Burma and World Eco. Forum, so clearly I don't need to go to see what's happening either.

Thursday, June 06, 2013

K.M.Kaung - my mini review of movie Rain Man

Saw the movie Rain Man again - maybe for third time - This is nothing unusual for me - as I have to study screenwriting etc on my own - and so much is "free". --I saw the play about AIDS - Angels in America 9 times while sitting and standing in the aisles when I worked at Annenberg Center in Philadelphia as a house manager & usher immediately after I got my Ph.D. So many TV scripts are on line, like There Will Be Blood.

Anyway, Rain Man is so excellent - Alan Patton, author of Cry the Beloved Country about South Africa wrote in his forward to the nth edition that "It can never be written again, as it can't be felt again".

Rain Man is the same way - Dustin Hoffman and Tom Cruise were at exactly the right ages (maybe there should be a sequel now) - and the casting is so good they even look the same - same noses and chins, and the acting of course is superb.

That is they don't "act" a la the Burmese movies in a pretentious, pose-striking artificial manner, with extremely stilted dialog.

Instead, Cruise's hyper testosteroned bouncy gait, and anger, and Hoffman's passive head held to the side, his "I don't know"s and "Ah Oh's and his reliance on routine - "The maple syrup needs to be on the table" are so real, you forget this a movie with a director, a scriptwriter and actors etc.

That is how it should be.

If you haven't seen it, see it.

Note: I don't believe only new movies and books should be reviewed - There is so much to learn from the old classics.

Now I have to go find the script and read it -

Kyi May Kaung

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Kind words on my novella Black Rice - now available on Amazon.com

Congratulations! Nga Cheik (Black Rice) is good. I wonder what happened next. One thing, I only know Ne Win was a post office clerk, didn't know about his father. Great job Ma Ma Kyi May.

Kind words on my poem on vultures from Human Geographer -

Kind words from Human Geographer on my "vulture poem" see my Facebook page -

Dear Kyi May,
Please publish this. It is brilliant. let me know when you
do!
I remember probably a year ago we spoke of vultures
picking out Burma's soft and hard bits anything that could
be carried off as carrion leaving the shell. 


Burma seems
even more morbid now.

HGHR

Pangea Continent before continental drift - originally we were all one -

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-j6ZGqXskUm8/UDem8twbzaI/AAAAAAAACfY/fs-E3_PR-N8/s1600/pangea_politik.jpg

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

A Necessary Anger for Writers -

For Writers - "A Necessary Anger"

"IN A 1978 LETTER to the novelist Cynthia Buchanan, William Gaddis — The Recognitions and J R behind him — discusses the difficulty, in late middle age, of staying angry enough to write well: -- "

From LA Review of Books -

I feel much better now - everyone from my child to ex-in laws always say I am "too angry" but here it is - only my Buddhist friend from Chicago, herself with a new kidney, said, -- like Vijrapani, the blue-skinned god who is the bodyguard of Gautama Buddha and said to be based on the Greek Hercules - "Anger can be a good thing."

Thank you, J.L.

KMK

Burmese hungry ghost discussion from my Facebook

Made me hungry looking at all the pics of good Burmese food.
Like · · Promote ·
  • Myo Nyunt We are hungry ghosts, Kyi May.
  • Kyi May Kaung Posted below - scroll down further - Photos and cooking by Cho Kha - thank you. Yes, hungry ghosts - now is about the time of the Chinese ghost festival - thasaygyi shi khoe - see all the rites and superstitions in Lisa See's excellent Peony in Love - I never knew you would be a wandering hungry ghost if you got no closure and this was due to your ancestral tablet being undotted (i.e. without a full stop! -- lovely concept) - and therefore destined to wander hungry forever - All those foodies who check this page should read See's book. It is Amazing how she combines Chinese cultural history with the voice of the poor ghost -
  • Kyi May Kaung What I like about FB is 1. very democratic 2. your discussions give me many fiction ideas for writing.