“Ketika Mas Gagah Pergi” (When Mas Gagah’s Gone) was a short story written by Helvy Tiana Rosa. It was first published on 1993 in a magazine named Annida. It’s been published as an anthology by two publishers on 1997 and 2000 before it was published by Asmanadia Publishing House on 2011. This time, the short story combined with another one called “Lelaki Tak Bernama” (A Man with No Name), becoming a novelette. That’s why the anthology then titled “Ketika Mas Gagah Pergi dan Kembali” (When Mas Gagah’s Gone and Return).
There are 14 other short stories in the book. Since all of the stories in the book were published in Annida first, and I use to read the magazine a lot, this is not the first time I read them all. It doesn’t bored me though. I like it then, and I like it now. Every single one of them.
Each story inside the book touches me. Some even manage to put some tears in my eyes. The stories are simple, yet has somewhat meaningful message in them. They make me think about life. What it’s all about, what’s really matter.
It’s nice to read those stories again all at once. Reminds me of good values of life in a beautiful way.
I love this one note from Mas Gagah to his sister on her birthday. For me, it’s not only the soul of the novelette, but also the spirit of the entire book.
“…Dan jadilah muslimah sejati (…And be a true muslimah)
yang selalu mengedepankan nurani (who always puts concience first/ listen to her concience)
Agar Allah selalu besertamu (So Allah always be with you)
Ingat Islam itu indah… (Remember that Islam is beatiful…)
Islam itu cinta… (Islam is love…)
Kalau kau tak setuju pada suatu kebaikan, (If you don’t agree in one kindness)
yang mungkin belum kau pahami, (that you might not yet understand)
kau selalu bisa menghargainya…” (you can always appreciate it…)