Sunday, March 8, 2015

Dr. Kwak Kwak, Tulungan Mo Kami!

(My first Tagalog poem. If I don't count that one I submitted for Filipino 12)

Nakapulupot ang buhay ko sa buhay mo.
Kamay, braso, hita ko’y nakadikit
Sa kamay, braso’t hita mo.
Ang puso ko ay nakaepoxy sa iyong puso
Sa ayaw natin o sa gusto

Ang mga araw at taong pinagdaanan ko’y
Hindi mapipilas sa kwento ng iyong nakaraan
Ang kasalukuyan ko, ang gagawin ko ngayong araw na ‘to
Ay ano pa, e di nakatahi sa araw mo
At bukas, ikaw pa rin ang aking kambal tuko

Kahit subukan kong pumiglas
Kahit minsan sa iyong mukha ako’y nababanas
Kahit parang masmadaling dumiskarte ang mag-isa
Kahit minsan ayoko na talaga
Bakit parang hindi kaya pag ika’y wala?

Nakapulupot ang buhay ko sa buhay mo
Sa gabi pag natutulog, ang higpit ng yakap mo
Sa araw kahit wala ka ay parang nandyan ka pa rin
Nagkabuhol buhol na ang mga parte ng katawan natin
Kahit si Dr. Kwak Kwak ay hindi tayo kayang paghiwalayin.

Para tayong preso ng isa’t isa
Magparole man, hindi pa rin tatakas
Nakapako tayo sa package deal na pangako
Nagsumpaang walang iwanan
Life sentence na nga ba ‘to?

Pinagdikit ng rugby,
Nakakandado at tinapon ang susi,
Nakapulupot ako sa’yo.

Nakapulupot ang ating mga ugat
Mga bituka nati’y naka-superglue
Nakapalupot ang buhay ko sa buhay mo
Dinikit ng kola ng panahon,  ng karanasan, ng kasal na legal,
Ng pangagailan, at higit sa lahat, ng malagkit na pagmamahal

Sunday, February 22, 2015


And when the spell is gone,
When the magic of the moment vanishes,
And the heat, the ardor of going through the fire
Leaves nothing but the memory of embers,
When the river of tears dries up,
Leaving a bed cracked and arid,
When the season of the storm
Has turned into the parch of summer,
When the quake leaves no more tremors,
And the sea has calmed down
Except for the currents down in the deep,
When the piercing pain
Has become a numb ache,
When the anger and the hurt
Have been wiped out from a calloused heart,
By the need to heal and move on,
When the scab has disappeared
Leaving a hint of a scar,
Barely visible, except to the eyes of those who know.
When the desperation of threatened love
Turns back into the complacency of security,
When the chase is over,
And the battle ends with the compromise of a ceasefire,
When the fight fades into a sigh,
When the mundane sets in
And we once more become fixtures
Nailed, hitched, anchored,
Easy, willing, accessible property,
Clad in a house dress,
Wrapped in layers of everyday dust,
A nagging presence,
Been there, done that,
And ennui becomes a comfort,
And comfort becomes a curse,
What then?
What next?
Just waiting for the next upheaval,
Bracing for a storm
That we miss
But we wish would never come.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Tints and Shades

Don't we all

Forgive our lovers
Soon to be lovers
Imagined lovers
Their foibles
We turn a blind eye
To their flaws

See halos where others don't
And allow the haze to hide the horns
Blemishes apparent to them
Invisible to our clouded vision
There's comfort in our prejudices
Solace in our imagination

We don our tinted glasses
To blur the blotches of a frail character
We camouflage crimes
Obfuscate offenses
We squint, we blink, we look away
We deny, we justify, we glossify

Because to burst the bubble of belief
Would be too hard to bear
Uncoupling too far from comfort
To be lonely is to be lost
Because identity is never isolated
And to belong is worth the price of oblivion

Better to stay imprisoned in our illusions
Better to remain ensconced
In our cocoon of conveniences
Our sentinel of sentimental attachments
This fortress of fog is our haven
To be cushioned in clouds is bliss

Because superheroes are dead
And what use are our armors
If they're far and not entwined around us
To protect our tender hearts and egos
Because saints are up in heaven
So we kiss the feet of the ones beside us

We put our blinders on
For the eternal ecstasy of
Evening embraces
For the luxury of lust
The privilege of pairing
For a lifetime supply of kisses and caresses

After all, who else could endure
Who else could dismiss the lapses
But the one who loves the most
The one who knows the deepest reasons
The one who sees the hidden motives
The one who's already given to the point of bleeding

Because maybe it's all damn worth it
Maybe the end will justify the pains
And in the meantime we hide our minds in shadows
And drench our hearts in numbing potions
And fog up our goggles and reinforce our helmets
And we stay and we love to the point of blindness and amnesia

And in return
We become heroes too
Objects of adoration
Beloved beneficiaries of gratitude
Saints saving sinners with imagined halos
Loved with and without conditions

And we too are forgiven
Our sins concealed under comforters
Our faults forgotten too
Our freckled pockmarked faces filtered
By eyes beholden, tinted, shaded, blinded
By hearts held captive by time, tide, and the turbulence of togetherness

Don't we all?


Restless, listless, like ants are crawling under my skin
Anxious, aching; feelings simmering into a boil
Disconcerted, agitated; the pea under my bed is growing
Seething, bleeding; finding words to paint the color of my angst
And failing