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The

Open Window
The Open Window Journal

Journal
No.02 Volume 01 JuLy 1, 2010

How to Preserve the World A C E x c lus iv e


Environment Two-day-long Election
Was Held for American
By Hay Htoo Center Student Council
Karen Baptist Theological Page (3)
Seminary, Seminary Hill,
Insein. Their purpose
was to preserve the
Environment according A r tic le
to their religions such as
The Role of Individuals
Buddhism, Christianity,
in Community
Islam and Hinduism.
Page. (5)
In that program, they
exhibited the Environ-
mental pictures.
Before the program started, C u ltu re
THE WORLD ENVIRONMENTAL
the audience walked
around and learned the exhibition of
C o r n er
DAY was held on June 5th 2010 at 9:00 the environmental pictures which were Marriage Customs in
a.m. to 2:00 p.m. by the Net-groups presented by Simplicity Circle. Burma
who participants about 60 altogether at Ko Yi Nan Thait, the presenter Page. (7)
continue on Page 6

There Are Many Achievements... P o e t ry


Interview With Jennifer Otting F e a tu re
Beauty
By Sweety & May
Page. (8)

THE AMERICAN CENTER Q: Where do you come


STUDENTS’ voices came from their from? P h o to E ss ay
heart. They said they will miss her A: I grew up in Miss-
because she will go back home. I really ouri but the last Soccer in Burma
wanted to know who she is. Besides, place I lived was
she is an amazing teacher namely, Boston, Page (9)
Jenny. Students in the American Center Massachusetts.
felt so sad because her students and the It was been
other who knew her love very much. many years; S h o r t S tor y
Initially, I had an idea. To let the students although it
know the voices from her, I launch an was seven Moonlight Sonata
appointment with her to arrange the years ago. Page (12)
interview.
continue on Page 4

Editor’s Note: This Publication was produced by students participating in the Open Window Journal at
the American Center. It is not intended for distribution
[ ] outside the American Center.
The Open Window Journal

Insp i ra t i o n Q uotation C orne r


One Million Suggestions by Suzan-Lori Parks
“I disapprove of what you said, but I will
Abridged by Déline defend to the death your right to say it.”

S
Voltaire
uzan-Lori Parks – the 2003 Pulitzer Prize winner
– gave talks in the American Centre in Yangon
“All compromise is based on give and
and the Jefferson Centre in Mandalay earlier last
month. The audience were of large numbers and her
take, but there can be no give and take on
talks were indeed awe-inspiring with comic anecdotes fundamentals. Any compromises on mere
of some events in her life. We all especially loved fundamentals is a surrender for it is all
the indescribable way she went through all her one give and no take.”
MILLION suggestions for us, didn’t we? I myself am Mohandas Ghandi
putting her suggestions to practice and they are working
out pretty well... for me.
Here is a renumbered, (somewhat) paraphrased and
abridged compilation of her suggestions.
1. Entertain (invite) all your far-out ideas.
P roverbs
2. Start and continue. “Out of sight, out of mind”
3. If the advice of somebody you admire and respect The idea that something is easily forgotten
for doesn’t match with what is going on inside you, say
or dismissed as unimportant if it is not in our
“NO” to their advice.
direct view.
4. If the advice of somebody you admire and respect
matches with what is going on inside you, take their
“Put your best foot forward”
advice with a big “YES”.
5. Meditate – it helps.
Embark on a journey or task with purpose and
6. Conduct yourself in the presence of the Spirit (God); gusto.
welcome all ideas with respect.
7. Encourage flexibility. The
8. Get comfortable being uncomfortable. Open Window Journal
9. Think often of the things you like or love about life.
What’s in your “Book of Grace”?
10. You have all you need to make your success Board of Editors
11. Don’t worry about being cool because being “cool”
ChamTha Kyaw, Aye Khaing, Myat Minn Khant,
is overrated. Htet Thiha Zaw, U Thiha, Khin Nandar Soe,
12. Each one teach one. Nilar Aung, Khin San Tint.
13. Lift others up as you climb and enjoy the trip to the
top.
14. Keep your eyes on the prize. Contributing Writers
15. Ain’t nobody gonna turn you around. Nobody can
Thiri, Thiha, Javelin, Tin Maung Htwe, Raphael
bring you down, so don’t bring yourself around. “R4” Ram, Harry Awesome, Hay Htoo, Kartoonist,
16. Keep your heart open. Myat Minn Khant, Saya Soe, Déline, Sweety, May,
17. When you get an award, increase your kindness and Nge, Aung Thu Htet
compassion to the world for you have been called to
represent the human race.
18. Always realize the value of kindness.
Circulation Limited
[2]
The Open Window Journal

A mer i c a n Ce n t e r E xclusive
Two-day-long Election Was Held for
American Center Student Council
By Thiha
General Secretary and President
gave their speeches respectively.
After the speeches, there
was a short time for refreshments
and friendly conversations with the
candidates. The voting started at
2:00 p.m. There were two tables: the
Information Table to explain people
about the voting system and the
Registration Table. The fair voting
was verified by the library card
number. Staff from Baldwin library
and security gate also came to vote.
The voting ended at 5:00 p.m.
June 12
The second and the final day
of the elections. The voting started
The Student Council Election was an exciting event at 9:00 a.m. Today, there were
for all students as it was the first student council ever no speech and so, voters mainly
held at the AC. depended on the campaign posters
for information about candidates.

T
he election for the Student their ideals and perspectives to the The candidates were allowed to
Council at the American student body. Also, every corner campaign 50 meters away from the
Center was held at the of AC was animated by words voting venue: the front of Baldwin
CBH on June 11and at the front of between friends about who would Library. There were two tables
the Baldwin Library on June 12. win the positions. The speeches as there were the day before. The
The election was successful and were officially announced to start voting closed at 2:00 p.m. Then, the
nearly 250 voters really scrutinized at 12:00 p.m. in the Count Basie votes were counted two times by the
the posters and speeches of the Hall or the Congress Hall of the Elections Committee and the winners
candidates to determine who the American Center. The hall was filled of majority vote were announced at
most suitable person for the position with so many enthusiastic students 3:00 p.m. The winning candidates
is. The Elections Committee also that many had to stand or sit on the were warmly congratulated by their
tried their best ensure that every floor as there were no more seats peers.
candidate did not cheat or do illegal available. After all, the Student Council
acts so that each candidate has the The speeches were started Election was an exciting event for
equal opportunity to vote. The by the short speech of Jennifer all students as it was the first student
following is just a silhouette of one Otting, a teacher of the American council ever held at the AC. The
of the greatest event ever held at the Center English Language Program candidates also rocked the audience
campus. who collaborated with Ethan with their concerns on problems at
June 11 Tidwell to bring the Student Council security gate and canteen. Surely, it
First day of the elections to fruition. Then, candidates will be an ever-lasting memory of the
and Speech day. Every candidate for Club Representatives, Class American Center and its students.
was excited by the idea of sharing Representatives, Financial Officer,
[ 3]
The Open Window Journal
continued from
There are many achievements... C reative Writing
Q: How did you know about our
country?
A Tragic Struggle for
A: I didn’t know very much. I
applied for the scholarship. At Survival
that time, there was Cyclone By Thiri

I
Nargis, so what I did know was
t was in the middle of the day near Hledan market.
very sad. Very interesting people
After I had finished my lunch, I set my leftover
and country….
lunch near a lamppost for stray dogs. After a while,
two boys aged around 7 or 8 years, carrying a trash
Q: When did you arrive here?
collection bag each passed by. Then, suddenly, one of
A: September 2008. Two years
the boys found the leftover lunch and pointed the box
ago.
to his fellow delightedly. They picked up the box and
walked away.
Q: How was your feeling when
I, not knowing about their hunger, misunderstood
you get here?
them as morally corrupt kids having not much care about
A: Very happy, people were
animal welfare, and got upset by the boys’ behavior. I
really friendly and I adjusted
was on the verge of shouting at them and scolding when
well.
I saw something that changed my mind completely.
My anger instantly dissolved into overwhelming
Q: You are a very wonderful
surprise and pity for the boys when I saw them eating
teacher. So, if you have a goal,
the refuse as they walked away. I could not believe my
could you mention about your
own eyes. I was too ignorant about the people around
goal?
me. I had never thought the people would be so poor
A: My goal is to continue working in Education.
to the point that they would eat leftover of others left on
the street.
Q: How do you think the differences between the
Seeing them eating the refuse from behind made
American Students and A.C Students?
me realize how they were struggling to survive.
A: There is more similarity than differences. I haven’t
taught University Students in the U.S, only high school.
The A.C Students are motivated to learn and appreciate The Month of Waso
learning.
By Nge

B
AC Students value and embrace learning because
there are many educational resources opportunities for urmese people are believed to have a desire
American students, some take education for granted. I for theater and festival (Pwes). Festival form
appreciate AC students’ motivation and determination Burmese social and religious activities and full
to increase their knowledge base. moon day of each month of Burmese calendar has its
own festival occasion.
Q: What is your greatest achievement at the A.C? By the Burmese calendar, the fourth month is
A: I’m happy with many projects. I’m happy with Waso (July). It is the time of the Waso Full Moon Day
Elective Classes: Public Speaking and Model UN. (July) commemorates the Buddha’s First Sermon and
I enjoy teaching. Students did great job. They are the beginning of the Buddhist Lend. It is an occasion for
able to do the A.C Student Council. There are many religious function of the Sangha.
achievements that I’m proud of. Young People go together to pick flowers in
season to offer at Pagodas. There are also navigation
Q: Do you have any plan for the A.C Students? and ordination ceremonies all over the country. It is a
A: I hope they continue working hard and fulfilling their period for reflection, meditation and contemplation.
dreams. Ordinary folk are also expected to be more
spiritual. Events such as marriages for people, and
Q: What did you enjoy most about working here? monks moving from one monastery doing a tour to any
A: The students. longer are avoided.

[4]
The Open Window Journal

The Role of the Individual in Community


By Tin Maung Htwe
“I found rewarding the universal presented their problems, Finding testament to youthful idealism and
appeal” said Drake Weisert, Public and solution; Gabriela Bolanos, activism, commented Justin Lowe,
Affair Officer of US Embassy US Embassy, Costa Rica mention; Hollywood reporter.
upon the presentation, the role of what shook them were the fact that After presentation, the
individual in the community by their youngsters were serving as audience, American students and
Richard. A. Nuccio, Director of researcher and agents of change.” young people asked and commented
civitas International Program. Columbia youths draw the several questions enthusiastically.
According to Civitas broucher community constitution, India young R.A Nuccio answered back friendly
“The center for civic education’s group survey on public supporting, and satisfiedly. And encouraged
Civitas International Programs and the solution for overweight by “our objective is without harming,
brings exemplary civic education us teenagers and so on. The winner what can we do for young people, to
curricula to student worldwide in of this project is Senegal young create harmonious society, turn to be
partnership with organization in activists, making campaign to raise the active youth citizens.”
the United States and in eighty the fund for clean water. “Sure to win
countries. The objective of civet converts, a powerful and winning
international Programs are exchange
of idea, opportunities for sharing
experiences and best practices
through workshops, conferences, Jokes By Javelin
newsletters, online discussions,
exchange visits and events,
Sleeping Mom
Professional development, capacity
Hla May was angry at her husband, Bo Bo, in the morning. So she
building, research, evaluation and
went alone to work. And Bo Bo had to drive to work alone too.
curricular programs.”
In the evening, Hla May came back, she asked her five-year –old
Pimon Ruatratual, from king
son, Zaw Zaw, to tell his father that she was sleeping. So Zaw Zaw went
Prajudhejok’s Institute added “we
to his father and said, ‘Mom asked me to tell you she was sleeping.’
try to initiate citizenship project
for Myanmar not only teaching
citizenship knowledge, skills and New
values but also supporting them, Once, two friends, Si Si and Mu Mu, went shopping. Si Si bought
offering to gathering program and what she really needed. But Mu Mu bought many things. She bought
other follow up program, especially, twenty blouses, twelve pairs of shoes, ten purses. So Si Si asked,
to young generation.” “Why do you buy many things? Do you want to give present to your
During presentation, a relatives?” Mu Mu said, “No, I want everything to be new, you know, I
documentary film The World We Want never use everything for a long time”.
was shown follows the inspirational After shopping, Si Si and Mu Mu went home. On the way back
stories of teenage activists throughout home, a man approached to them. And Mu Mu said Hello to him. Then
the world engaged in changing their she introduced him to Si Si. She said, “He’s my new and 21st boyfriend,
communities and nations. Shot in Tun Tun”. She continued, “I want everything to be new, you know”.
Bosnia-Herzegovina, Colombia,
India, Indonesia, Jordan, Russia, The Third Prize
Senegal and United States, the The people in the community celebrated the 60thAnniversary of
documentary captures the young the Independence Day of Burma. They played sports for fun. A nine-
citizen’s remarkable struggles in year-old child, Phyo Phyo, participated in running and won the third
their own words and through their prize. Then he went home and told his father about it. His father said,
captivating personal experiences. “I am really proud of you, Son! How many children ran in the track?”
“Students 13-14 years old stood Phyo Phyo replied, “Three of us altogether.”
before the municipal council and
[ 5]
The Open Window Journal
continued from
How to Preserve the World Environment
of Interfaith (Buddhism) presented human through nature. God expects taught to be clean in Islamic. When
about Buddhism and the preserving humans to be His stewards with people die, it should be burried. It
of environment. And explained nature. God expects us to obey His would be protect the environment.
about how the world can be commands. God created the world And the presentation was stopped
destroyed, when the world will be and everything in the world. And by Islamic prayer.
destroyed, the reason of the world He blesses them and protects them. Ma Ni Ni Win, the presenter
destroying, Buddhism and the He gives human being knowledge of Interfaith (Hinduism) presented
environment, the Buddha’s scripture strength and duty to protect and about The Environmental Concept
and the environment, the Buddha’s preserve the world. Not to use it in Hinduism. Hinduism is a religion
view of climate change, preserving only for their economy. that is very close to nature. It asks its
the environment in Buddha’s Hay Zar Thet Naing, the followers to see God in every object
wants. Lord Buddha teaches that presenter of Interfaith, (Islamic) in the Universe. During the earliest,
the people’s avarice, anger and presented about the Islamic formative period of their society,
ignorance are destroying the world teaching on environment issue. She Hindus first perceived God presence
environment. And then the presenter mentioned man is the second to around them through nature. Ancient
stopped his presentation and finished person of Allah for earth; man has Hindus felt Brahman presence in
it by reading Buddhist’s traditional the power to control the environment everything around them. Hindu
prayer together. and to take care of it; all creatures religion wants its followers to live a
Silver, the presenter from are like a family of God: and she simple life. It does not allow people
Interfaith (Christianity) presented the loves the most those who are the to go on increasing their material
environmental issue in the Christian most beneficent to His family. Allah wants. People are meant to learn to
view. He explained about Christian commanded human being not to enjoy spiritual happiness. So that
for Environmental Stewardship. God do mischief on the earth. And then to derive a sense of satisfaction
created the earth and all of nature in she gave some examples from the and fulfillment, they need not after
it. God has a relationship with all teaching of Prophet Muhammad material pleasures and disturb
of His Hreations. God’s power is (PBUH) on environmental issue. nature’s checks and balances.
seen in nature. God calls all of His There are bad consequences because
creation to worship. God teaches of human being. In addition, there is

continued from
Interview with The ACMO
to be honest and comment on Q: In order to criticize others, you contestants left, they will be asked
performances in constructive have to know more about vocal to perform the songs within a theme
criticism. The opinions we give techniques. So, how did you learn assigned by the juries. For example,
are just to know what one have to about vocal techniques? when we assign “Metallic” theme,
improve. But in Burma perspective, A: Everyone who loves singing contestants are only allowed to
it is somewhat rude. This doesn’t knows how to sing and who can sing perform metallic songs. Also, when
concern with the judges. Judges just well. Also, I was grown up in the there are only four contestants left,
have to say good or not good. Also, music community, so I criticize using each two of them will be asked to
except for the preliminary contest, my knowledge and experiences. perform duets. They will also need
the contestants are chosen by the to perform more than one songs:
audience’s vote, not by the judges. Q: Also I have heard that the songs a song of their choice and a song
Sometimes, we faced with problems will be in theme starting when only selected by the juries.
and criticisms for our comments, but six contestants left? Can you explain
being honest is the most important me more about themes?
for judges. A: Well, when there are only six

[6]
The Open Window Journal

C u l t u re C o rn e r
Marriage Customs in Burma
By Sweety & May
The groom’s parents
prepare the offering
usually contain three or
five hands of bananas,
one coconut and
eugenia sprigs (Ka Taw
Pwe). The groom has to
pay respect this to the
bride’s parents. It is very
essential for Burmese
marriage culture. More-
over, the bride and
groom offer food, robe
and others alms with the
firm belief that it is the
foreteller of auspicious
and happy life for their
future. It is unforgettable
for the couple to prepare
all stuff together.
The groom has to pay respect this to the bride’s When people are invited to
parents. It is very essential for Burmese marriage a wedding, they almost always give
the bride and groom a gift or some
culture. money. Most of the newlyweds

W
throw the dinner party at the hotels.
hen a boy and girl grew finishing the ceremony, the guests Actually, it isn’t a custom of Burmese
up and love each other, are offered the refreshments by the tradition.
they want to marry and newlyweds. When the marriage couple
live with happy life. To do so, firstly, Most the traditional wedd- arrived home, they pay respect to
they need to have approval from their ings take place at the hotels. The their parents. Then, their parents
parents. So, a wedding ceremony hotels have wedding packages for give the best wishes for the marriage
will be performed with their parents, couples. It takes about two hours. couple. After that, the marriage
relatives, honorable guests and In wedding ceremony in- couple tries to enter their wedding
friends. Before a man and woman clude the consecration ceremony room. At this time, their relatives
get married, they usually prepare for which is included to be more and friends blocked with gold
their wedding reception. They invite auspicious for the bride and groom. chains to ask for pocket-money (Gae
their relatives, friends, associates, The consecrator ties the groom’s left Boe). It is a very lovely traditional
colleagues and neighbors. and bride’s right hands altogether custom in Burma. People practice
Before the wedding recep- with white towel. Their hands the genealogy their marriage custom
tion, they are court marriage keep into the silver bowl which is long ago. Especially, prominent
performed by judges at the court. include the water, flower and Nan families practice and abide their
Court marriage needs judge and Tha Phyu Thanakha Lotion. The custom. But, marriage couples
witness. After that, the couple consecrator poured the auspicious are still practicing this traditional
became legally husband and wife. In water onto their hands with spiral. custom.
the court marriage ceremony, there After consecration ceremony, they
are no large number of guests. After can assume as a couple. Photo source: Internet
[ 7]
The Open Window Journal

P o etry F e a t u re
Beauty
By Déline
“A THING OF BEAUTY IS A Undesirable consequences could
JOY FOREVER,” but “BEAUTY occur in the relationship between
LIES IN THE EYES OF THE the deliverer and the receiver. One
BEHOLDER.” party could be misunderstood by the
The two aforementioned lines other. The one who gives could have
are very famous adages in the regrets for a well intended cause. Or
English language. The first one is worse things may be on the way.
a line from the poem “A Thing of I have had several incidents in
Beauty Is a Joy Forever” by the my life when the things I had done
famous poet John Keats. The second for others went astray because they
one is an English cliché. These two never knew my good intentions,
view “beauty” from different aspects and there were times when I
– that is for sure. However, I have misunderstood other people’s good
come to comprehend the two lines deeds for me and found it too late
as one expression regarding what I to thank or apologize them. One
have learnt from some experiences. incident was back in high school
My dear mother often talks with a student one year senior
about “life” regarding as “a super- individual can do for another is not to to me. One of the teachers was
equation which balances itself”. give but to let him discover himself really mad at something small but
She says we have no control or and his true potentials. I think that contemptuous that he had done to
impact whatsoever over it, and yet the phrase “a thing of beauty” in her. That teacher talked about him
we can survive and thrive by acting Keats’ line means precisely this – with words of loathing right before
suitably and flexibly to the time and the best deed one can ever do for me but in his absence.
circumstance of any given situation another or any other great good deed I suggested that he apologize
according to Charles Darwin’s one does for another. Bringing what the teacher but he wouldn’t. Instead,
principle of “Survival of the Fittest”. I have stated above together, this can he thought I alienated his teacher
I quite agree with her. And what I be inferred from Keats’s line... and him, and says very polite but
mean to state here is that life is full “The satisfaction one gets by bitter things to me whenever we
of “Give and Take”. We always need doing a great good deed for another meet. In another incident, I advised
to make a certain investment to gain can be enjoyed by both the deliverer a dear friend of mine to sign up for
something – nobody gets anything and the receiver for a lifetime.” a writing workshop by a very good
for free. To illustrate, once a dear However, there are certain teacher. He constantly refused to
friend of mine said, “You have to circumstances under which there be there because it was early in the
trust other people first so that they can be pain instead of joy when morning and he wanted his sleep.
will trust you.” “beauty” is misjudged. This I wanted him so much to be there
I believe – by far – that the judgement is what I understand by that my urging became incessant
greatest and most enduring joy “the eyes of the beholder” relating pleading, and he finally told me
one can ever experience is the to Keats’s words; it is how the to “f**k off”. And we stopped
satisfaction he gets by knowing and receiver of the deed sees things. A talking for about a month. As for
being appreciated that he has done virtue well delivered could become me misunderstanding others’ good
a good deed to improve the life of in vain if it is not well received or deeds for me, I have many stories,
another. I myself have done little taken incorrectly. What if the given especially with my parents.
bits in changing the course of some material is not what the receiver These things happen in life
people’s lives and such pleasure wants or needs? What if he sees the – inevitably and unexpectedly.
lingers in my heart and memory. thing that comes to him negatively
Reputedly, the greatest thing an and does not make good use of it? Continued on page 14
[8]
The Open Window Journal

Ph o t o E ssa y
Soccer in Burma
By Saya Soe

[ 9]
The Open Window Journal

Creat i v e Wri t i n g
What Time Is It?
By Aung Thu Htet

I
f ever the legend of a wishing tree were correct, I Although it is one of my most valuable possessions, it
would pay anything within my power to have such is not branded. It is not decorative. It is not ornamental.
a Tree. In fact, there is no need for me to long for Most notably, it is not expensive. However, it has a
it. I have already got one, but not in the form of a tree. most remarkable attractiveness through simplicity, with
It is the side pockets of my trousers .I have to thank a black leather band, with the most distinguished black
my forgetfulness for putting away in these pockets numbers printed on a round face. Two years from its
a large variety of things in store so that I can have successful post as a timekeeper in my matriculation
whatever I like anytime only if I place my hand in examination, it still keeps time. It is old, for a watch,
them. Once, there was a Ks 100 note that came out but still actively at its service, which does nothing but
from my pockets, already crinkled, almost torn, but still only to heighten my love for it. I would spend a minute
usable, when I had a headache searching for change on or two, mediating upon the numbers on its little white
a bus. Once there was a pen in my pocket while I was face; or a few hours listening to the rhythmic beats of its
a desperate need of it to note down a heart as I count the seconds, I would
telephone number. Of course, an ID be walking over the moon whenever
photo presented itself when I forgot someone asks me, “What time is it?”
to bring a long one when I registered Then, I would stylishly raise my hand,
for a class. Needless to say, the first Needless to say, the first glance at the number its hands point
thing I would do when I have almost to, and answer in a most assured tone,
thing I would do when
any of my belongings lost is to open believing in its accuracy although it
my closet, and rummage through I have almost any of my is not of reputable brand or of a price
the pockets of my trousers that are belongings lost is to open that would surprise my friends.
carefully ironed and folded. This my closet, and rummage “Nothing gold can stay,” a
almost always works! through the pockets of my renowned poet, Robert Frost, once
Although some people would
trousers that are carefully said. Nothing could be truer than this
blame my forgetfulness at such a Gospel truth. Although my watch
tender age, I would not disagree with ironed and folded. is not of gold still, I would add,
these people nor be ungrateful for my “Nothing gold can stay. My watch
forgetfulness. If one asked me what is no exception.” I do not have the
kind of a person I was, I would say foggiest idea why my watch neared its
without thinking, “a forgetful one”. Of course, whenever demise so soon. Its hands sometimes, to my frustration,
I go to a class or to the library or anywhere else, there failed to tell me the exact hours, much less to say the
are such essential things that I have to try to remember minutes or the seconds. However, it would start working
to bring a long as: the keys to my house, without which properly all of a sudden, as a drowsy worker suddenly
I would have to stand in front of my house with a stupid wake up and remembers his work, as soon as I set the
face, waiting for somebody to come home; my wallet, time straight and gave a little tap on its face, whose
which includes all important items such as ID card, cover was once clear now so troubled with intricate
money, among others, my umbrella, which I do not want scratches. Then a day came when it finally exhausted my
to forget come rain or shine or both come or not, and patience and love. “Is that the time? Great Scotts! Isn’t
last but not least, my wristwatch, which is probably the it too early?” I exclaimed as I took a look at my watch.
most meaningful possession that has ever happened “Your watch needs new batteries. No wonder! A watch
into my life. can only serve as right as its price can tell,” my friend
There is a reason why this wristwatch holds a lot of told, not to me, but as if he was talking to himself in a
meaning to me. The watch played a most significant part contemplative tone or as if there was a ghostly phantom
is one of the most monumental events in my life that who just suddenly showed up before him only to listen
being the matriculation examination. It helped me keep to his reasoning.
track of time during those demanding six three-hour sits. Continued on page 14
[ 10 ]
The Open Window Journal

Humaneness Myat Minn Khant


Time Raphael “R4” Ram

I am a not cunning creature Square-toed father with the great gray beard,
Yet I can face those who are cunning to me. Owner of eternal instants worth
I am not a wily creature The pain of sickly brown-eyed children
Although I can face the wises. Living in shattered grains of golden sand,
The other and I are not as cunning as fox Judge of doomed red skies
Pathetic is never over And sheltered green heavens,
Although my spirit goes lower and lower; Bringer of the pain
It’s just a looking for a new plant, Of loved ones lost,
In the dark green hill. Well of wisdom,
For the last breathing of mind, He who nibbles on the sanity of good men,
I suicide dreams: Murderer, bald buzzard who feasts
Long to be true in the future. On the fresh wet flesh of young love,
Father of Death,
The Angry spouse of Life,
Open Window Journal
Tell me,
How can you claim to be so much,
When you are
Poems A mere river
Gushing downstream to
An empty sea?
Partial love,
How can you do so much,

Diversity to Peace Tin Maung Htwe


If all you can rule
Are the simple grains
That fall through the neck of two glass funnels.
Time has been my good friend
Please tell me what For far too long.
I see it a real black Even at the supple
“White” you said “blindness” Age of sixteen,
Who can tell us what? Time seems
I do believe in God Both fleeting and eternal.
You tell this is not Friends made.
No one able to think Brothers gained.
War makes lives to lose. Love discovered;
Respect the view of each rights Abandoned.
Make a beautiful compromise Mistakes made,
Work together day and night But not regretted.
Peace may upon on all sides.

[ 11 ]
The Open Window Journal

S ho r t S t o ry
Moonlight Sonata
By Raphael “R4” Ram

I made my way into the office jealous of her beauty, was from
through the revolving door, and as behind a murky curtain of liquid
it whirred, the receptionist snapped amber. It did not lessen her beauty
up to glance at the clock: 6:30 sharp. in the least. And as she sat down
She smiled, and flashed me a wink at her table, one silken leg crossed
that had more than just a trace of over another, I slowly lowered my
friendliness. glass.
“I see you’re still keeping your She had the sort of face
early track record clean, Gary”, she Shakespeare would have drowned
purred. in, for a hundred sonnets and then
I barely managed to stutter out some. The cute, cherubic plump of
a reply through a nervous laugh. her cheeks were offset by the sultry
“A good morning to you too, sighs in her amber eyes, and the
um...er....” (What was her name cotton-candy blush of her wispy
again? Jane? Janet? Or was it lips. The rest of her body told epic
Janice?) tales of the mantel that fought the
“Don’t fret it, Gary... Janice. going, however, that’s always been centerpiece for attention; both
It’s Janice. You have a nice day, a horribly one-sided struggle; one eventually settling for combining,
alright?” I always seem to be losing at. In in a limpid pool of visual orgasms.
I gave her an awkward bow and my more honest moments, such as She was sitting. Just sitting. But to
shuffled hurriedly towards my desk. this one, I’d openly admit that it’s any passer-by, it would’ve looked
I could feel her hungry eyes boring always been my fault, and I suppose like she owned the world.
into my back. it is: there are some layers of my What surprised me almost
Women have always thought personality I just can’t seem to shed. as much as her beauty, was her
of me as attractive, or so I’ve heard. Until women come to accept me choice of clothes. You see, it was a
I once happened to hear a group of for who I am, I guess I’ll just have Summer evening, and even though
ladies referring to my (Gary’s) “lean to wait for the right girl to come twilight was just peaking in over the
swimmer’s physique, and roast- along. horizon, the spicy Miami Sun still
hazel eyes”. I tend to shrug off most I’m probably boring you with shone in all its savage glory. I loved
of these comments, because deep my jabbering and pathetic self-pity, summer for lots of reasons, but at
inside, I know love is just one barrier but hear me out. There’s a reason the top of the list were the clothes
in my heart I’ve never been able to I’ve been telling you all this: it’s (or lack thereof) pretty women
pass through. Don’t get me wrong, because yesterday, I met Her at last; would wear. She, however (unlike
though: I love women. Everything the right girl, I mean. her more provocatively dressed
about them. The way they laugh, tuck It was at a pub called “The friends), was wrapped in a modest
stray strands of hair behind their ear, Trident”- not my local bar or afternoon-dress. I would later learn
and blush at honest compliments. anything. just one of the many that she had a name that was almost
I just love their company. In fact, random joints I hit, to keep my as classy as she was: Elizabeth. Not
almost none of my close friends are short-lived relationships as discreet Liz, Lizzie, or Beth. Just Elizabeth.
men. And, as far as the romance in as possible. I was idly swirling my An elegant name for an elegant
my life goes, impressing the opposite mug of cider, just about ready to lady.
sex has always been second nature to leave, when she came in. My first It wasn’t long before I realized
me. It’s keeping these relationships glimpse of her- and as if Fate was that I was gawking at her. I got up,

[ 12 ]
The Open Window Journal
straightened out my shirt, and strode Experience has taught me that when trying
towards the table. Experience has
taught me that when trying to single to single out a girl from a group of friends,
out a girl from a group of friends, it’s important to make all the girls in the
it’s important to make all the girls group feel special and not just focus on one
in the group feel special and not
just focus on one girl, to avoid bad girl, to avoid bad feelings afterwards (how
feelings afterwards (how I learned I learned this is another story, for another
this is another story, for another time).
time). However, as the evening soon
came to pass, it must have become
obvious to her friends that I was all get back soon,” and she sealed her spent with a single woman seemed
for her. They left, reluctantly, but promise with a wink and a kiss. as juvenile as man’s belief in justice.
Elizabeth didn’t seem the slightest At work it wasn’t long, while I My mind soon felt like it was about
bit bothered. She liked me, but not was flipping through a huge square to burst, as I tried yet again, to recall
like most women, who would stare file, before I realized what a fool I what had happened the day before.
at me with a lopsided grin mid- had been, choosing to stay locked up Nothing came. My head felt like a
conversation. She genuinely liked within the bland walls of the office, muddied mess of memories both
me, for who I was. while she waited for me to get back. genuine and fake, and through the
It was already dark by the I threw the file at one of the three storm of confusion that had burst
time we went back to my place. walls of my cubicle. I was going forth, I ran into the emptiness of the
We both slowed down to a more back home. night; a lost lamb howling for the
conversational pace. The moon was I ran through the revolving ghost of its lost love.
dancing in the sky, surrounded by its doors, giving a quick nod to the
gaggle of twinkling nymphs, and I, receptionist’s greetings. (What was THE SUNDAY HERALD
for once, was truly happy. We kissed her name again? Janet? Jane? Or Police discovered the
several times on the little boulevard was it Janice?) Out on the streets, mutilated body of a young
back home, and every time I cradled the evening had crept in. A blade of woman this evening after she
her soft face in my hands, I made a violet had ripped apart the azure sky, had been reported as missing
promise to myself to not let anything and left behind fresh scars of pink by a friend. The woman,
get in the way of us. It was my first and orange. I raced through the very whose name has not yet been
time falling in love, and I was falling boulevards we had walked through released, was found at the
fast. the previous day, and thoughts home of a local businessman
That night, we slept together of Elizabeth’s waiting embrace after neighbors reported that
on the roof. The stars demurely hid quickened my pace even more. they saw what they believed
themselves behind a veil of clouds, As I neared my house, however I to be blood on the roof. Early
and soon, the moon joined them. heard the first sirens. Soon after, indications show that the
And I stayed up all night; for the first the flashing police lights caught woman had been sexually
time in my life, I stayed up to watch up with the somber walls, and an abused and tortured prior to
a lady, a very special lady, sleep. ambulance came into view. It was being murdered. The police
Her eyes danced all night long, to as if the heavens had been ravaged, have also reported finding
the serenade of the stars, and as the raped and reborn a phantom of red the decomposing remains of
first rays of dawn shone through the and blue. Then, horror gripped my several other young women
passion of the night, she opened her soul, as I watched the police break buried in the basement of the
eyes and smiled. Just before I left down my door. house.
for work later that morning, she I wailed out into the night. A nationwide search is
was standing at the threshold in a Every woman I had been with had being undertaken for Garreth
shirt that barely hid the shapely flare left me, leaving only a broken part “Gary” Fox, the culprit of
of her waist, and she made me a of themselves behind, and now, these horrendous crimes.
promise. Elizabeth; my Elizabeth had left me Anybody with information
“Gary, baby, I’ll be right here as well. The blooms of young love regarding his whereabouts is
waiting for you. Won’t go anywhere that had sprouted in my heart wilted requested to call the police
until you get back, so you better away, and my thoughts of an eternity hot-line on.....
[ 13 ]
The Open Window Journal
continued from continued from Beauty
What Time Is It? However, should the deliverer have a heart big enough
to forgive the misunderstanding receiver of his deed and
That was, no doubt, the last day I had my watch
go on in life, he could still escape from the pain, sorrow
around my hand. In fact, I forgot this once truthful
and sufferings caused. After all, there is something
friend of mine as if the God himself has wiped off its
Alexander Pope wrote which reads,
painful memory from my mind. Still, life went on with
“To err is human,
my friend forgotten. In fact, not only I forgot my watch
To forgive is divine.”
but also I forgot the time. I do not remember how long
This is what I see beauty as. How do you?
it has been since I have gone separate ways with this
insolent traitor, who repaid my love by denying and
betraying me.
Yesterday, when I was on my way to class on a
C artoon
bus, a man asked me “What time is it?”He asked not in
Burmese like Myanmar people ‘usually’ do. He asked
me in a most pedantic tone, ‘in English’. Well, I did not
have an idea why this man kept annoying me by asking
the time while I apparently had no watch around my
wrist. And I have not had it for a long time. At last, I
could not resist my curiosity or rather, irritation and told,
painstakingly suppressing my annoyance to show anger
or impatience, the man who seemed not in his mind, “I
am not wearing a watch, dear uncle.”
“Please turn out your bus fees,” shouted the
bus worker. With nuisance still on my mind, I most
unwillingly planted my hands in the pockets of my
trousers for bus fees. No monetary notes came out.
Instead, an old acquaintance did. Yes, it was my old
companion, the friend who used to stick around my
wrist. Having gone through numerous times of laundry,
it seemed older than I could imagine. I do not know
whether it told the right time or not. But I noticed that
its heart was still beating.

Ca l l f o r S u b m i ssi o ns
July 21

What’s specail about July 21?

That’s the deadline for submissions to the new Open


Window Journal.

We want your creative writing, commentary, stories,


poetry, gaames, jokes, cartoons, observations,
suggestions, criticism, praise, inspirations,
quotations, news, and educational tips.

Send to: asskopenwindows@gmail.com


Or, just gave us a look when our new issue comes
out in early August.

[ 14 ]
The Open Window Journal

R eco m m e n d a t i o n s P uzzle
It’s just a game. In this game we can find vocabulary
Movie in the box. You can complete the sentences the words
that are given at the below. And you can find the
Pan’s Labyrinth words in the box. The words can go across or down,
Pan’s Labyrinth is a grim, or diagonal left to right. You will be pleased with
a dart, shock, disgust and yourself when you find the words in the box.
pity movie (Ivan Baquero) is
Ofelia 11 years old girl faced A D K B F U I N O H C E U
complication in Spain during M P L F O U N D A T I O N
World War II. The film K E X T E N S I V E B L P
director Guillermo Del Toro Y G H I V L P W E I V E R
creates the developing of U N D E T E R R E N T A E
storytelling. Ofelia took the
S O P H I S T I C A T E D
instrucions of Pan who ask
for Ofelia to get the key from C G D U O T E L B K S A I
the huge frog. Ofelia wants to O A S D G N P V L B M U C
implement her dream world M R V S T K L U I E C P T
because she wants to take care of her pregnant mother. M U H N B I C G F S K L A
Ofelia and her stepfather (Captain Vidal) don’t A H L E A K E D C G A N B
get along. She meets variety of adventure in realism and N B K P I O F U E H Q V L
imagined.
D C I T S A I S U H T N E
Ofelia’s housemaid (Mercedes) who is
mysteriously ready to help Ofelia. The song arrangement 1. Command
could reveal that would be really happened while 2. Deterrent
Ofelia and Mercedes run away. The sound follow the 3. Enthusiastic
audience’s heart. Camera and setting made many tasks 4. Evasive
such as eyeless ogres, locusts and Pan. Pans’ labyrinth, 5. Extensive
magical fantasy movie is worth watching because the 6. Foundation
aucience can’t predict easily until the ending 7. Leaked
Sweety 8. Review
9. Sophisticated
Book 10. Unpredictable

Growing up again by MARY TYLER 1. Capital punishment is supposed to act as a ……….. .


MOORE. 2. Skilled workers can ……………..high salaries.
Life, Loves and Oh Yeah 3. The earthquake caused ……………..damage.
Diabetes, you will see this amazing 4. I guess I’ll just have to accept the job. Well, you don’t
words in the front page of the book. seem very …………….. about it.
This try to reach to your heart and 5. The weather in this city is so ……………..that you
making a burning desire to read book never know what to expect.
entirely. In preface, she explained 6. I want the truth! I’m fed up with ……………..
how this book become alive Philip answers.
Revving and his daughter who has a 7. Unfortunately, your pen ……………..and left a bad
diabetes encourage Moore to write stain on my shirt.
this book and helping mentally to 8. The hotel collapsed because its …………….. was too
the people who have diabetes. Full weak.
of sources, diabetes resource guide for diabetes win 9. The ……………..of the movie said it was very
make you feel good. You cannot stay away from book disappointing.
after you read the first page of Growing Up Again. 10. The building is protected by highly ……………..
Harry Awesome warning devices.
[ 15 ]
The Open Window Journal
Interview with The ACMO
The Inspirations of an AC
By Thiha
AMERICAN CENTER MUSIC Q: How will the contestants of comment honestly on the contestants’
ORGANIZATION held the first the AC Idol get benefits from the performances. But while you believe
round of AC Idol on Friday, June 25, contest? that you are doing your job, some
at Globe Room, American Center. A: The winners of the AC Idol will will say that you guys are so serious
There were great performances be asked to perform at special events rather than having fun. So, how do
of young prospective singers and organized by the club. you cope with that problem?
constructive and honest comments A: It is just the job of the judges
of the juries, who are also American Q: As being judges, you will have to Continued on page 6
Center students. The contest went
well with successful collaboration
Library Information
of contestants, audience, and juries.
Then, after the contest I asked the Library Orientation Program for new members
juries some questions to know more and old members who did not have a chance to Date
about the exciting event. attend this program. In this program, one of the July 30, 2010
American Center Language teachers will conduct
Q: How did you guys get the idea of a presentation on famous American people. Time
organizing AC Idol?
4:30 p.m.
A: Well, we are interested in music The book club discusses a book selected each
and we love watching the American month by club members. Book Club conversation Place
Idol, so we imitated the American will be on July 28; 2010 at 4:30 p.m. in the library. Baldwin Library Book
Idol and created the AC Idol. Most Book-of-the-Month will be “Blind Willow, Club
of the rules and procedures are the Sleeping Woman” by Haruki Murakami. New
same with those of American Idol. members are always welcome.

MONSOON TERM 2010


August 9 –September 3 Interviews August 2-4 Registration August 6
US History:
A Writer’s Current Summer
Course Title The Early Mark Twain Food & You
Studio Events Stock Theater
Years
Teacher Tom Mimieux Ethan & Erin Cresa Grace Gregory

MTWThF
MWF M/Th MTWThF MTWThF MTWThF
Time (A) 8:15-9:15,
10:00-12:00 9:00-12:00 1:00-2:30 1:00-2:30 10:30-12:00
(B) 9:30-10:30
Classroom Teaneck Bismark New York New York Bismark Globe
Levels III, IV, Completed Completed All levels Completed Completed
Prerequisite V, and VI or Level IV or Level V or welcome to Level V or Level VI or
equivalent equivalent equivalent interview equivalent equivalent
Fee K 30,000 K 36,000 K 36,000 K 45,000 K 45,000 K 45,000

All Submission are welcome.


Send to: asskopenwindows@gmail.com or come to the Conference Room every Wednesday at 2 p.m.
The
Open Window Journal
[ 16 ]

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