Mulat

Nagsisimula ang panaginip sa pagbukas ng mata.

Ulap ang lupa’t ang lupa ay ulap.
Bawat paghakbang ay paglutang ng paa.

Mulat ngunit pikit ang pag-unawa.
Mulat subalit himbing ang diwa.

Mabigat ang mga talukap
hinihintay ang pagpikit
ang pagpihit ng mundo

kung saan ay ulap ay salamin
ang lupa ay alimuom
ang paa ay pakpak

ang puso ay lira
ikaw ang aking himno.

At muli
Nagsisimula ang panaginip sa pagbukas ng mata.

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Dito

Narito ka
Ngunit hindi kita mahanap.

Kung hahawakan ko ba ang iyong kamay
Sasalubungin mo ba ang aking mga mata?
Iipunin mo ba ang nagkalat mong diwa,
Ilalahad mo ba ang sarili mo nang buo?

Katabi kita at ilang pulgada lamang ang ating pagitan
Ngunit hindi kita mahanap.

 

Saturday Night

brown manila folders

and A4 sheets

surround me—

I sit on the floor of the living room

sifting through leaves

letters

memos

proposals

instructions

reports

and the occasional forgotten post it notes.

my mind restrains itself

from spilling

unto itself

(my head is bowl of stale dates,

names, projects, dates, projects, names, projects, names, dates, projects, names…)

instead it convinces itself:

I am in a field of paper flowers

and these pages are butterfly wings

see the letters in times new roman and calibri and cambria

they float and play with the air like dandelion seeds

I run, jump, and catch whatever I can—

there is a poem here

somehow.

Nowhere Street

I drag my feet to Nowhere Street
Eyes half-shut, searching for a prayer to mutter.
This is my slow descent to insanity.

Some days start bright and happy
Some provoke me with gloom. But, no matter:
I drag my feet to Nowhere Street.

I wake, I curse. I eat, I sleep.
I do the dishes only to see tomorrow’s clutter.
This is my slow descent to insanity.

I have more than ten pairs of shoes
For a destination that never alters.
I drag my feet to Nowhere Street.

I do not know how this started.
I fear this will never end.
This is my slow descent to insanity.

Nights are long and the days are longer.
My feet are tired, my heart pounds weakly yet
I drag myself to Nowhere Street.
My slow descent to insanity.

Snippet: roses

It was Valentine’s Day. I was a high school girl, with a mother who grew miniature roses in her small garden. Without permission, I armed myself with a pair of blunt scissors and took flowers from her beloved plants–fresh buds, half-bloomed, fully bloomed in soft pink and peach hues.

At school, I gave one to my best friend. Another for another friend. And another for a seatmate. But the best flowers? I tied them all up in a small, delicate bouquet and nonchalantly handed it to the boy I liked.

It was Valentine’s and I was so, so young. It didn’t need an enormous amount of courage nor anxiety. There were no expectations and malice in my naïve and innocent heart. I just wanted to give him the best roses.

That was more than twelve years ago. I’ve given other things to different boys since then, but never with the same innocence and selflessness.