for 薛丁格的貓【 Plant 】

It’s been a while since I felt such a strong surge of emotion that I cannot help but to render into words. And also it’s my first Chinese long-form writing? A Heavy Reliance on Google translate, and my own limited familiarity with the sounds of Chinese words… Resulted in this. I hope you spend some time with my words, and I hope they bring you a semblance of peace and enjoyment. 我有一段時間沒感受到要寫字的衝動了。 這也是我的第一個用中文寫那麽長的東西? 結果,依賴了Google翻譯很多 哈哈。希望這些字能夠爲你帶來一些些的平和與喜悅。中文翻譯在下面~

A persisting tension of death and life before Shrodinger lifts the flap of the box, an acceptance of unknown and stasis unbearably brimming. In these pandemic times, the decision to go forth in gathering people to witness your music is not to be taken lightly. Yet my experience of this set is only light, lilting sounds climaxing into the insistence of drums drumming right into my ribcage resonant. An insistence towards joy that is not rebellion but a state of being, simple and assured. I think of Spike Jonze’s Her, of what Amy said in conversation with Theodore when they were both exasperated by their surrounding circumstance—we exist here only briefly, and in this briefness in this intake of breath, its exhalation, why not choose joy? 

草苔路, the second song of the night confesses a not-yet, incomplete yet certain. A sentiment that expresses “This is us, fumbling and present. This is us, as we are, laying bare”. It takes a certain irreverence and guts to present as such, to believe wholly in music’s process, to allow as is. I am not familiar with music and its technicalities, but I know my body and the resonance it registers. Their music does not elicit stasis or calm but emergence, rhizomatic ecstacy. A quiet that is as much its own as it is a path preparing you towards elsewhere. Several times I hesitate to reopen my eyes after a song’s conclusion. A desire to linger a little longer in the world created within those few minutes. A transcendence to another world not of my own. Perhaps it was the G&T flooding my system as I witness the second half of the set, but it was especially easy to submerge myself in the ocean vastness of offbeat rhythm. Off beat natural beat sediments settling embedding into my marrow. A tomorrow that has yet to unfold but is anticipatory, excited.

Shambhala, the pure mystical land existing beyond geography and physicality. Pure sound and energy. That’s also the title of their second album. What does it mean to pursue an elsewhere when there is a pandemic happening climate crisis unfolding? Cannot-wait-to—arrival. How will we emerge on the other side of this time? I’ve been holding Susan Griffin and Lawrence Weschler’s words close lately, especially Can Imagination Save Us? and Vermeer in Bosnia. I won’t say much about it, go read it yourself, but I do feel that in Shrodinger’s Cat’s music, I found a semblance of this Shambhala, this mystical beauty I seek.

I think of my two months thus far in Taichung, two months without-ire, unlike my emotional experience of Singapore in my 24 years of life. A privilege I do not take lightly. A privilege to set aside three entire months for my practice’s sake, to fully be present wherever I am. Yet I am also thinking of Yaacob Ibrahim’s words about migrant workers gathering on the Kallang fields, Josephine Teo’s call to “not demoralise [her team] with finger-pointing”, naming the current COVID-19 escalation as a situation that occured because we did not have the benefit of hindsight rather than oversight. Denial and denial and acrobatics without simply wholeheartedly admitting to one’s mistake. And I think also of Alfian Sa’at’s words, “if you care too much about Singapore, first it breaks your spirit, then it breaks your heart.” I love Singapore so fucking much? A love that chips away at my spirit, a love that screams frustration. A love I want to continue loving.

I see this insistence towards loving most clearly in moments of quiet, a quiet temporarily created by Schrodinger’s Cat tonight. And I sit here outside 迴響, furiously typing, trying to capture these sentiments before they dissipate. And I think of 海的一端, sounds of ocean vast swirling washing over me. Gently breaking upon the shore of my skin.

**中文翻譯 **

在Schrodinger抬起箱子的襟翼之前,死亡和生命持續存在著緊張的氣氛,有著一種對未知和停滯 滿滿的淡定與容忍。在這特殊時期的當下,我不輕視「薛丁格的貓」繼續讓人們見證他們的音樂的決定。然而,那晚 讓我感受到輕快,輕盈的旋律沿著耳鼓 直通我的胸腔 與堅持的鼓聲 無息地共鳴著。他們的音樂對喜悅的堅持不是叛逆,而是一種簡單 確信的原本狀態。我想到Spike Jonze的 雲端情人,Amy 對 Theodore 說的一句話:「我們在這裏只是短暫的存在。在這短暫的期間 幹嘛不他媽的選擇喜悅?」

當晚的第二首歌 「草苔路」 給我一種對尚未完成的誠懇,而在尚未完成的當時也充滿的 沉穩的確定。似乎表達著 “這就是我們 摸索而又存在。這就是我們 真實赤裸裸的樣子” 的執著。這需要一定的勇氣和膽量 需要完全相信著音樂的過程並允許原樣呈現。我對音樂及其技術並不熟悉,但是我知道我的身體及其的共鳴。多我來説 他們的音樂不會引起停滯或沉著,而是有如植物隨著反邏輯而自然擴散的銷魂。他們的寧靜 除了寧靜的本質 也是一條讓我走向他方的道路。好幾次,一首歌結束後,我都會猶豫 不捨得重新睜開雙眼 渴望流連忘返 留在他們在那幾分鐘裏所創在的世界 待久一些。也許是在我系統裏循環的酒精,在目睹後半場時 我輕易地沉浸在那海闊不合時的節奏裏。不合時 但卻猶如自然微妙的沉澱物 沉入我骨髓中 帶往一個尚未實現但充滿期待的明天。

香巴拉,一個存在於地理現實之外的純淨神秘土地。純粹的聲音和能量。那也是他們第二張專輯的標題。在這疫情 氣候危機 的時刻 追尋別處 意味著什麽呢?我們將如何從中萌芽?最近我一直把 Susan Griffin 和 Lawrence Weschler 的文字緊抱在心裏。我指的是他們所寫的 Can Imagination Save Us?Vermeer in Bosnia。我不會多説,讓你自己去讀,但我那晚所體會到的音樂 就是我渴望的香巴拉。

我想起我目前為止在台中的兩個月,這兩個無需生氣的月。發現我在新加坡成長的這24年,好像沒有一段時間是不生氣的。能來到台灣 毫不保留地閣下三個月來完全專注于創作 是個特權。是個我不輕視的特權。但在這裏的同時我也在想新加坡議會成員 Yaacob Ibrahim 對於外國勞工的看法,在這疫情的時刻 Josephine Teo 所說的 “不要指責政府 使自己的團隊士氣低落”, 國家發展部長 Lawrence Wong 把新加坡當前COVID-19情況升級説成是因爲我們 沒有後見之明 而不是因爲我們疏忽⋯⋯ 一輪又一輪的否認 雜技 而不是全心全意地承認自己的錯誤 而從中改善。這是我熱愛的新加坡。真心的熱愛。所以才會一直感到生氣吧。我想到新加坡詩人 Alfian Sa’at 的話:如果你太在乎新加坡,首先它會讓你傷及精神,然後它會把你的心碎透。

那我該怎麽辦呢?打從心裏的累 但 也打從心裏的愛與執著。只有在寧靜時刻 這份愛才不會傷到我。而這份寧靜 我在那晚 迴響裏 因為「薛丁格的貓」 暫且找到了。此時的我正在迴響門外 瘋狂地打字 想在這些情緒消散之前,加以捕捉。耳裏還縈繞著「海的一端」,它那茫茫旋流 輕輕地 通往晚辰 破岸。