Poison (2009)

Cerpen Karangan:
Kategori: Cerpen Bahasa Inggris
Lolos moderasi pada: 12 March 2023

A poisoned life.
It poisoned and was mastered by the Dutch.
The sound alone was scary, like thunder erupting from a dragon’s maw.

Aksa would never betray a dream, and dreams can propel him anyplace. Even his playmate, Budi Dharma, has stated that Aksa enjoys living in danger, is poisoned, is foolish and careless, and enjoys living in turmoil. He does not care. He’s currently straightening up his books while Aksa chatters alongside him.

“Be a Pangreh Praja is delectable. You will be regarded. Powerful people are respected. Worshipped. Rather than enrolling in the Bumiputra Medical Education School, You’ll only be smallpox orderly.”
“The smallpox orderlies were hence ancient. No longer a smallpox nurse after graduating from Stovia. Bud, A real doctor, just like the Dutch doctors,” Aksa responded.
“But Stovia is a poor people’s school, and they simply enter while being enticed by the Dutch East Indies Government’s free accommodation and tuition offered. Because no one is interested. “How does it go?” Budi Dharma said.
Aksa was silent, but it didn’t mean he wasn’t listening to Budi Dharma’s comments. After all, respond him is useless.
“Aren’t you ashamed to go to school there? Your dad is your father is an aristocracy.” Budi Dharma continued his speech.
“What does it matter if I’m an aristocracy child?”
“It’s amusing that an aristocracy child attends Stovia school. Be smallpox orderly.”
“Well, my father is okay with my decision to study at Stovia; why are you the dizzy one, Bud? “And, one more, Stovia graduates are no longer smallpox orderlies.”

The aristocrats despised lowly employment like smallpox orderlies, and they should become regents, prosecutors, wedana, or patih. Although Budi Dharma frequently believes that what makes the aristocrats hesitant to continue their education at Stovia is not the label of a poor school, but rather the stringent admittance process and the challenging learning process.

The Dutch East Indies administration assumed that teaching indigenous to be doctors was less expensive than hiring European doctors. Thus, Stovia was established. Initially, universities in Indonesia exclusively served the health industry.

“You know, Sa? There are lots of lessons to be learned there. What are those? Geometry, astronomy, organic chemistry, body anatomy, pathological principles, obstetrics, surgery, medical device knowledge, Dutch, arithmetic, earth science, soil science, natural science, botanical science, and zoology are all required. It can break your head! Don’t go against the grain! It is preferable to attend Kweekschool, Hoofdenschool, or Landbouw School in Buitenzorg. The finest thing to do is to become a Pangreh Praja like me!”
“What’s so amazing about becoming Pangreh Praja? Will only be the Netherlands’ servant! I’ll still do indische arts! Being a Javanese Doctor!”
“It’s up to you!” You’re odd. You don’t want to be invited to heaven. You’d like to go to hell. You enjoy living a poisoned life, and the poisoned life is the poisoned death.”

That’s how great a dream is.
Aksa is a Stovia student now, and he has no regrets. The Dutch Colonial Government did not practise racial discrimination in its political education. Stovia lecturers are academics who value liberty. What was discussed was not just medicine but also liberalism inherited from the French Revolution or Bataviaasch Nieuwesblad’s information. At Stovia, they are all intellectuals who enjoy exchanging thoughts on various topics. The modern city of Batavia provided intellectual support to Stovia’s students, many of whom came from tiny communities. Batavia was a haven for native non-political intellectual, so students flocked there, and brilliant ideas were formed.
Disciplined education for Stovia students can bring together students from various ethnic backgrounds. Its existence in the city hub can make Stovia a seedbed for nationalism.

“How was your time at the tot Opleiding van Indlansche Artsen School, Aksa? “How did you get there?” Budi Dharma asked. Aksa folded the de Locomotief newspaper he was reading right away. Aksa hasn’t seen Budi Dharma in quite some time. They are now holding a reunion at the Douwes Dekker Library. Aksa is one of the Stovia students who are delighted to be there because there are many appropriate books for native pupils. Douwes Dekker’s house, which firmly supports ethical politics, inspired Stovia students such as Goenawan and Tjipto Mangoenkoesoemo to publish their opinions in newspapers.
“Would you like to know? Try to recall what you stated previously. The aristocrats’ prestige to study at Stovia? The Stovia students are now pushing the aristocrats! Javanese custom must be discontinued since it is an impediment to modernisation. A line separates priyayi from non-aristocrats, and the obstacle lies from the aristocrats themselves.”
“What do you mean?”
“Yes. My Stovia study friends desired a shift in societal customs and rules! The aristocrats are clearly revered, and the difference is palpable. “Isn’t that true, Sam?”
“Do you imply it’s important to build unity among aristocrats and non-aristocrats ?”
“Exactly! To elevate the non-aristocrats’ standing and boost the economy. The Javanese people are mostly poor and humiliated by other nations. We must build unity without thinking of position, wealth, or intellect.” Aksa explained.
Budi Dharma placed his hand on his brow. He believed Aksa’s words had some validity. The country’s youths must be able to express what has been hidden in their hearts. The children of the country must have a personality. Attitude is required. Must be able to make objective judgments. The youngsters of the country must change. They must rise!
“Stovia students do more than just study. They also talked about how Javanese customs cause discrimination, and this discrimination makes it harder for Javanese individuals to realise their full potential. It’s full of the feudal order.”
“Yes, it’s you.”
Budi Dharma had not finished speaking, but Aksa had cut him off again.
“Since the rise of The Young Turks, Turkish feudalism has been disturbed. This incident affected Bumiputra’s educated inhabitants.”
Budi Dharma understands that the problem in this country is not just one of discrimination but also of the economy, colonial administration, teaching, and education. Stovia students discussed the topics. Graduates of Stovia are genuine warriors, and many militant national figures were born in Stovia.


It was a dramatic morning. Aksa has completed her studies at Stovia. Since the appointment of Dr Wahidin Soedirohoesodo, the Stovia students’ desires for change have been achieved. He requested donations from affluent Javanese aristocrats to assist students who could not complete their studies. A good education can aid raise national consciousness.

Aksa has now met Budi Dharma. This time it was at Aksa’s residence. Budi Dharma is deteriorating. He had been sacked from his position as Pangreh Praja. He also believed that what Aksa had mentioned earlier, that being a Pangreh Praja was similar to being a Dutch servant, was correct. He regretted not joining the Stovia students, who were intelligent and concerned about the nation’s fate.

He was dying to ask Budi Dharma, who actually goes to heaven? Who ends up in hell? Who has been poisoned? The question, though, was swallowed whole.
Life is poisoned, and it hurts.

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