Archive for the ‘Poems’ Category

Pwede Pa Ba?

Posted: October 2, 2018 in Poems
Tags: , , , , , , ,
Pwede pa ba

(Rebecca Plotnick Photography)


“Ang tagal na rin ah,” masasambit niya
matapos ang isa, dalawa, tatlong hakbang papalapit.
Malungkot na ngiti, sabay sabi ng, “Oo nga. Matagal na rin.”
Nanginginig na boses. “Kamusta ka na?”
“Okay lang ako.”
At pipigilan niya ang mga patak ng ulan galing sa kanyang mga mata.
Sa wakas, magkakalakas ng loob na sabihin
ang matagal nang hinihintay na marinig.
“Sorry. Sorry talaga.”

Titigil ang puso. “Ano?”

“Sorry kasi umalis ako ng ganon lang.
Sorry sa lahat ng pait at sakit dahil lang akala ko sigurado ako.
Sorry kasi binitiwan at binasag ko ang nag-iisang mahalaga sa’kin,
dahil lang takot akong panghawakan ka.”
At iiyak ang puso niya, pero hindi ang kanyang mga mata.
Matagal nang natuyo’t naglaho ang mga ulap ng luha para sa kanya.
Sa katahimikan, may malungkot na ngiti.
Sa gitna ng maingay na katahimikan
Susubukan niynag magsalita ulit.

“Pwede pa ba?”

Pwede pa ba? Pwede pa nga ba?
Ibababa ang ngiti. Lahat ng bubog, basag, at lamat ng nakaraan
na pilit niyang itinago sa pinakasuluk-sulukang bahagi ng puso
Lahat nagsilabasan, lahat mapanakit na nagbabalik.
Lahat hindi magpakukubli muli. Lahat ay nananakit.

“Anong pwede pa?” tatanungin niya.
“Kung pwede pang manakit ulit?
Kung pwede pang lalong palalalimin ang sugat na naka-ukit?
Kung pwede uling mahawakan ang basong basag na para durugin ulit?
Paki linaw kung alin dyan ang gusto mong maging pwede pa.”

At doon matatahimik siya. Siguro.
Gustong-gustong magsambit ng sumbat.
Gustong-gusto niyang magbitiw ng mga salita
Nang siyang umalis ay mapulaan at masaktan.
Gusto niyang ipagdukdukan at ipagpilitan
Na siya’y nagkamali sa pagbitiw at pag-iwan.
Na siya’y nagkamali sa kanyang paglisan.

Ngunit higit sa lahat gusto niyang patahimikin
Ang tahimik na boses na nagsasabing,

“Pwede pa ba? Pwede pa ba siyang bumalik? Pwede pa bang umulit?”


Bukas Ulit

Posted: August 14, 2018 in Poems
Tags: ,

Bukas Ulit

Ilapat ang masakit na likod sa kama.

Ipagdasal ang mga problema ng, at sa, sarili.

Ipahinga ang pagod na isip.

Itulog ang pagal na puso.


Bukas ulit. Bukas, lalaban tayo ulit.


Posted: August 7, 2018 in Poems
Tags: , , , , , ,

When you promised me the world
And everything beautiful in it
When you counted for me the stars,
Told me you’d fetch and give them to me
One by one
When you said to me, “Look at the moon, how it shines”
And with a smile whispered,
“that’s because it knows I’m here for you”–
You should’ve heard how it seemed so true.

When you told me you’d cross all rivers
You’d ford all streams
Fend off my every nightmare
And help me reach all my far-off dreams
When you insisted to be the salve
For all my brokenness
To be the balm to soothe all my pain
When you sweetly said, “they’d all leave, but not me. Never.”

When you swore to be my Perseus,
sword at hand, ready to cut off and slay
all the ugly monster heads
to ever rear in my darkest nightmares

When you promised to be swifter than Hermes
and come running to my side at one beck and call
when you claim before all that, like Romeo,
you would only either have life with me
or have no life at all,

When you swore to God you’ll
Outwit the sphinxes,
Out-combat all of Odin’s Valkyries,
Defeat Ares and Athena combined in a war,
Outshine the sun god Ra as he makes his
trip around earth,
go through the gates of Hel and overcome
her territory’s terrors,
All for my sake–

When you convinced me there’s no one else
You can imagine to be with
Today, right now, until you breathe your last,
When you promised me you were sure
To be as the very air I breathe–
Always with me, ever in my system–
To be my very shadow, never leaving my side
When you vowed to me, “I love you, always,”
You were exaggerating–
Weren’t you?


Posted: August 7, 2018 in Poems
Tags: , , , , ,
Bea Pangilinan

Photo by: John Carlo Cielo and RJ Fulache

White-washed, plain, smooth walls;
Halls of linear, brown, wooden doors;
Wards full of beds with identical sheets
Smelling of strong ethyl and chlorine.

I sat by my room’s only window—
Glass and sill cleaned a little too well
To protect me from the world’s harms out there.
I looked outside to try remembering
What it’s like to live beyond white walls.

They say I’m missing nothing at all—
Only threats, dangers, and my very death;
That my life is kept better within these walls so white,
with syringes, IVs, and the machine beeping at my side.

“This food will make you stronger,” they would say,
always, as they give me my silver-plated tray.
The IV fluid will fix whatever is wrong,
My two tablets and five capsules would heal what’s broken,
And so long as I stay inside these white walls
I’ll live, and the rest of the details would be rightly woven.

That’s what they say, what I’ve always been told.
And I could never say they’re wrong, but I guess
there’s just a lot of things that they don’t know.

They don’t know that every time I soak my hands
With alcohol to touch nothing after,
I’m being stripped not of my filth but of my joy.

And every time I eat my colorless meals,
My mind and heart cry out I’m being poisoned.
Every time they change my sheets with another dull blanket
I run out of breath a little slowly.
Every time the IV is inserted in my veins
My blood runs dry a little more.
And every intake of my prescriptions
Seems to be little deaths, part by part, little by little,
Capsules replacing my cells a million at a time.

Call this depression, or call it insanity,
But for me it’s just plaintively funny
how the institution that exists to give life
snuffs that very essence out of me.


Posted: July 8, 2017 in Poems
Tags: , , , , ,
I used to stand tall and mighty
Defiant as a sturdy tree
Against all odds and cares
Against all currents out there.
And I was confident–
A puppet proud of its motions,
A clay proud of how it’s molded–
I thought I was strong on my own.
And I left, like ship without rudder I left,
Wandered too far from the sun
And then wondered why it’s too dark
I left, and now I just have no strength left.
I used to think I’m well equipped
To win my battles and wars
But instead of holding gold trophies
I’m here full of wounds and scars
Because I left, like ship without rudder I left,
Wandered too far from the sun
And then wondered why it’s too dark
I left, and now I just have no strength left.
And I left, wanting to prove myself strong I left.
But now please take me back to the fold
Bring me back to my life, my joy, my home
I left, but now let me return to the joys I’ve left.

You Are His

Posted: March 29, 2017 in Poems
Tags: , , , , , , ,

You are His betrothed.

You are His wedded Bride.

You are His.
He vowed to take you

Where only the perfect dwells.

He promised to keep you forever

And to wipe every tear 

Away from your eyes.

You are His.
You are His promised Bride.

The veil would yet be lifted,

And the morn is yet to come,

But the vow stands sealed.

You are His.
He went away to prepare your place,

But your hope is not misplaced.

For a time He journeys ahead,

But you’ll follow Him soon,

For you are His.

We’re in the valley of tears.
We’re walking through death’s shadow.
We live a life full of threats and fears.
We’re passing through a dangerous meadow.
We’re in this dark vale of tears,
Where there’s toil, hardship, and pain,
Where at times light does not all appear,
Where some days bring none but heavy rain.
We’re in the dark, but not for long.
We tremble at night, but dawn is coming.
Light shall come save all of God’s throng
And out of this vale we’ll come victoriously smiling.
This is the thought that will bring us through
Jesus our Lord is at the highest station.
This is our life’s most comforting truth–
Christ rules, forever seated on the throne.