Il Postino Para sa Iyo

Poetry by | June 6, 2009

Kapag naririnig ko ang il postino
Nag iiba ang aking mundo.
Napupuno ng iyong masasayang alaala
Na minsa’y nakatago sa munting box kong dala-dala.
Kapag naririnig ko ang il postino
Nag iiba ang anyo ng aking mundo.
Maaliwalas, napupuno ng pag-asa
Ang aking damdaming nakabilanggo, nagpapaubaya
Ang aking tinatanging panaginip, napapantasya
Ang imaheng na ako’y nasa iyong bisig. Napakasaya
Sa duyan ng mga nota ng biyolin, piano at gitara,
Ikaw at ako, pinag-iisa.

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Confessions of a 58-year-old Trekkie

Nonfiction by | May 31, 2009

Space – the final frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise. Its continuing mission: to explore strange new worlds; to seek out new life and new civilizations; to boldly go where no one has gone before.

These words invaded my awareness more than forty years ago when the first edition of Star Trek came out on television. As a precocious teenager, I became instantly tantalized by the Gene Roddenberry creation, a penchant shared by my sister Thelma. At least once a week, we had a rendezvous at around 7:00 PM with the crew of the Enterprise in our 10-inch black-and-white TV set. As far as I remember, we never missed an episode, and should a storm occur at that moment with a blackout, we cursed the heavens for causing us to miss our date with Star Trek-TOS (The Original Series)!

The sci-fi series became a bonding link between my sister and I. There were other sci-fis that came out on TV later (Buck Rogers, Flash Gordon) but our interest was never drawn to them as much as with Star Trek. From the moment we met James Tiberius Kirk and the pointy-eared Vulcan Spock, we knew we were bitten by a bug from which we never recovered.

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Inip

Fiction by | May 24, 2009

Kahapon, ito ay isang tulang pag-ibig. Isinulat ko ito para sa’yo. Hinintay kita ng matagal, pero hindi ka dumating. Ayan tuloy, nainip ito at naging isang hamak na litanya. Makinig ka ha? Mabilis lang ‘to.

Kahapon, ito ay isang tulang pag-ibig. Binanggit ko ang lahat ng mga bagay na bumuo ng araw ko. Binanggit ko ang mga makukupad mong ngiti, gaano ka kabuti sa pamilya mo, at ang katangi-tanging paraan ng paghawak mo ng bolpen. Binanggit ko rin gaano ka kagaling gumuhit; pinuri kita hanggang nagtampo ang mga kaibigan ko at hindi na rin nila hinintay na dumating ka. (Nakakapagod raw kasi makinig sa mga himig kong puro ikaw, ikaw, ikaw.)

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Á Bientô, Great Man

Nonfiction by | May 24, 2009

It is not everyday that one gets the chance to grieve the loss of a great man. Great men come in too little a supply, and often, they leave without so much as a warning to lessen, if not completely halt, any pain that naturally comes from goodbyes. Yes, it is a pain to part, and even more painful to part with great men. Hence the natural order of things where great men are few, and to part with them an even rarer circumstance. My family, however, grieves the loss of a great man once or twice a year. And once again, the time has come for us to swallow the bitter pill that is goodbye.

A great man is one who loses himself in the service of others, including those he loves the most. A great man takes time to make up for lost time, despite knowing the futility of such an act. A great man braves the seven seas and the cruelty of the world, sometimes even literally, for someone other than himself. A great man is my dad.

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Ode to the Pomelo

Poetry by | May 24, 2009

It’s a contradiction, this curious round thing
changing from hard green to ripe yellow
with the bright blush of its hidden heart.
O pomelo, you filled my childhood in abundance
and you rolled down Davao streets like rain!

Familiar to my mouth as the mother tongue,
you defy my attempts at definition.
You’re too individual to be an orange,
and too charming to be called a lemon,
yet you mock the grapefruit’s pallid flesh.

How I struggle for words to contain
the thick bitter softness of your rind,
the juicy honeyed tang of your pulp!
But to hold you is to comprehend you
and to fathom you is to eat you.

In the artificial cold of supermarket stalls,
So small a gift from the Land of Promise,
I yearn to claim your ripening roundness
and partake your sweetness before it decays.
But they’ve put a price on you beyond my reach.

O pomelo, I long for you as I do my homeland
where we both were once free as eagles in flight.
I know inside you is full to bursting
with tales of home, much like my hidden heart
where my blood flows a bright pomelo pink.

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Hugis

Poetry by | May 24, 2009

ano ang hugis ng pag-ibig

ito ba’y parisukat
nakakulong
sa iyong bawat naisin

ito ba’y tatsulok
karibal ang haplos ng kahapon ang bukas
ngayon

ito ba’y bilog
paurong-sulong
walang katiyakan

ito kaya’y walang hugis

pumipintig
hindi mayapos

dumadaloy
pumipitlag

dahil sa iyo

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