Ballad of a Green Bird [ppb ui]

If you still have your own tears, cry for him. This very short story was not written by my hand, but by my heart. It’s a fiction. But I write it from fragments of true stories.


Just one night before giving birth to him, his mother had a strange dream. She was bitten on the head by a green bird. A green bird! She always thought about it. What does it mean? From the holy book she read everyday, she remembered the old story about Yusuf. When he was in prison, two prisoners told him about their dream. The first told that he drank wine from a glass. The second told that he was bitten on his head by birds.

As a dream interpreter, a gift from God, he told them. To the first, he said, “You will be free. The king will take you out from the jail.” To the second, he said hard,” You will be punished by being hanged. Soon afterwards, your head will be bitten by bird bills.”

This old story disturbed her sleep day and night. Will I or my son get a bad destiny, like the second prisoner? This question took her mind along the life. She never told anybody about her dream because grandmother prohibited her to tell a bad dream.

Today she had just realized what her past dream meant.


Majenun. A mad man. His real name was Yusuf, but thus his friends called him of his habit doing the strange things. He always brought the dice in the pocket, and threw it to decide any important things. It was irrational up on the ordinary people. As a child, he was a greatly interesting boy. He was the only child among the others that his parents was proud of most. They liked him just like Ya’qub liked Yusuf. When he was teenager, even though he was not a such clever student, his friends liked him just like Egypt people liked Yusuf.

Graduating from the senior high school, he chose philosophy in university. His family wished him to take major that enable him to be a socially highly regarded person. “What is philosophy?” they said. Philosophy was a sky matter up on the villagers.

“With this kind of thing, I will be the president someday!” he replied. They had no wish him to be the president. It was too high up on the villagers thought. They just wanted him to be a civil servant. It was enough. But he insisted with his own will. However, he loved them undoubtedly. “I will raise you all from the poverty, once I become the president, like Yusuf brought his family from Kan’an to Egypt once he became aristocrat,” he whispered in the deepest mind.


Today, his mother, father, sister, brother, relatives, friends, were crying for him. The doctor diagnosed that he get schizophrenia, a kind of such complicated mental disorder. Even to say the word, they had difficulty. In the village, they simply called the person, mad, crazy, or anything like that. No body knew what was the trigger. Majenun had never talked about his problem. The only person knew is just God.

“Oh, God of angel! Lord of whatever in heaven and earth. God of small things! What is our sin? Why do you bring us to this disaster? We always pray day and night. Our lips have never been dry from your name. We can no longer carry out.”

Thus, they cried for him. Crying and crying. It was the only thing they could do. They brought Majenun to many spiritual experts. They could do nothing to help, except giving them useless water, prayer, belt, and sheets of paper. Hopelessness surrounded them. It was the most difficult time in their life. And they never knew when it would end.

It was the thousandth time Majenun shouted from the bed, “What did you do? I’m the president. Why don’t you obey my command?” His arms and legs were tied up tightly on the bed. The doctor didn’t allow anyone to loose it. He could be aggressive and dangerous for them.

“Release me! I’m the president!”

Today his mother had just realized what her past dream meant. Majenun. Mad. Both suit each other. Different in tongue, the same in meaning, as if God had arranged.


Brother, I did it!


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