Archive for September, 2013

Song 1

(# Poem)

gaze not
at the dancing christmas lanterns
and the winking red, yellow
blue and green lights on the window
relish not
the ham and cheese and wine
laid on your sparkling table
you, you with a christian heart
should look far beyond…
at the graveyard of living skeletons
take a look, take a look
at the hollow face
of a kid drooling at an apple
or a bunch of grapes…
take a look at a plate of rice
and a few granules of salt
being stared at by lonely eyes.
in the chilling early dawn
take a look at the scrawny fingers
and the tattered shawl
of an old woman
crestfallen at the church’s door
in the blistering light
of the high noon sun
take a glimpse at the worn out heels
and the torn soles
of a sweltering worker’s shoes
and stare afterwards
at the wading water lily
on the putrid city’s estero
and the murky pasig river
yes, try to stare at the sun’s light
penetrating the shabby roof of a shanty
and squeeze in your soul
the bitterness and suffering of the poor
so your christian heart
will deeply feel the hollowness of christmas!
#(modified from the original English version by Mark Angeles of my AWIT 1)


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Outcry of Claude McKay*


the air brings the outcry of claude mckay
like gunshots ripping, hissing
through the forest’s darkness
like a spear stabbing, piercing
through the wall of consciousness
splitting the skull of cowardice!

“if we must die,” shouts claude mckay
“let it not be like hogs
hunted and penned in an inglorious spot
while round us bark
the mad and hungry dogs
making their mock at our ancestral lot.”

“if we must die
o let us nobly die
so that our precious blood
may not be shed in vain
then even the monsters we defy
shall be constrained to honor us though dead.”

indeed, comrades-in-arms
let us be brave
in our decades of struggle
for the sacred emancipation
of the downtrodden-exploited class
in the la tierra pobreza
of our bloody, nightly dreams.

yes, comrades-in-arms
let us be brave, shouts claude mckay
though we are outnumbered, says he,
show them we are brave…
for their thousand blows
deal them one death-blow
what though before us
lies the open grave
“like men, we will face,” shouts claude mckay
the murderous, cowardly pack
pressed to the wall, dying
but fighting back!”
———————-# modified from the original English version by MARK A. ANGELES of my SIGAW NI CLAUDE MCKAY.
Claude McKay, a Jamaican, became the associate editor of The Liberator and The Masses, and wrote poems and a novel. He became popular when Sir Winston Churchill, during the II World War, read in the British Parliament McKay’s sonnet “If We Must Die.”

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(# Poem)

i will just pass by once
in this stupid world
yet my right is being trampled
oftentimes butchered, slaughtered
why? why?
i am no criminal
i am no thief
i am no plunderer
of public funds
i am no grabber of someone’s else land
much more never did i rape any gal
it’s i being always raped
by society’s injustices and greed
why? why?

too many things are forbidden
says the holy church
it’s forbidden to cuss
no matter how furious you are
it’s forbidden to speak vulgarities
why do those words exist?
what are those words for
and how you’ll set them free
from your salivating mouth?
bullshit! son-of-a bitch!
thou shalt not lust after another gal
except after the body
of your devoted wife
but these holier-than-thou
can covet, luxuriate and satiate
every hour, every moment
with a hunky, virile, macho lad
or with a sexy, sweet-smelling gal
bullshit! son-of-a bitch!
only sacred and just is their right
why? why?
am always the sinner
am the malevolent
am the devil
will, for sure, go to hell
por dios por santo
what kind of world is this?

it’s forbidden to tell the truth
against thieves in government
they will cut off your tongue
it’s forbidden to seek change
so society will be fair
and the aggrieved won’t swell
but holy mother of divine grace
they will make you rot
inside a stinking prison cell
why? why?
just because they who forbid
are the few self-proclaimed kings
and society’s sanctified demigods
and, we, the indigent
are mere “wretched of the earth”
son-of-a bitch! bullshit!
why? why?

even my bits of happiness
always are being meddled
am but a pauper
too poor to indulge in luxurious vices
am not rich like you
who can wallow in the casino’s glow
who can caress in paradise
the swelling groin
the bulging breast
of a lustful paramour
my joy is only too simple
just to smoke a cigarette
to calm my nerves and troubled mind
due to life’s hardships and pains
to also scribble some poetic lines
when am crazy with desire
but por dios por santo
it’s forbidden to smoke there
no smoking in that building
no smoking in public vehicles
no smoking for the health
of mammals so dignified and delicate!

son-of-a bitch! bullshit!
they say it’s their right
but how about my right
and of other smokers too?
why? why?
why is there a cigarette factory?
why not burn it
and smolder their manufacturers?
so we smokers are not like lepers
driven away everywhere
forbidden at many places
as if this world is only theirs
as if they will die not
even if they don’t smoke
or inhale a bit of smoke
as if, we, the smokers
are the only ones
to evaporate at once
from the face of the earth.

but you may also ask:
why? why?
they who never smoked
nor even inhaled a lingering smoke
so suddenly died
put down by diabetes
by hypertension or heart attack
by cancer in the liver or throat
by cancer of the lungs or colon
or in the testicles or breast or ovary
they who never smoked even once
were ambushed, shot to death
body torn apart
they meted death earlier
than malevolents like me
who’s been smoking for forty years now.

why? why?
he who smokes to lop off hunger pangs
is being avoided by society and death
but he who avoids cigarettes
but gorged in gluttony
and exploited others exhaustively
to amass fortune and wealth
their asses are always kissed
what’s so tragic maybe
the grave gobbles them early
and history mocks and condemns them
why? why?
son-of-a bitch! bullshit!
is the world just stupid
or am i the one being deceived?
just respect my right please
not just yours
you son-of-a bitch! bullshit!
#(modified from the original English version by MARK A. ANGELES of my BAKIT GANYAN?)

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Sa Pasigan Ng Kamalayan


sa pasigan ng kamalayan
hinihintay ko tsunami
ng ngitngit ng sambayanan…
sa laot ng dagat ng kamulatan
dumadagundong na’t dumaramba
nag-aalimpuyong alon ng dugo’t luha
ng dinustang mamamayan.
daluyong kaya silang dadaluhong
sa pader ng kasakiman
lulunod sa mga eskribano’t pariseo
sa mga hari-haria’t diyus-diyosan
ng lipunang walang galang
sa sagrado nating karapatan?
wawasakin na bang ganap
ng delubyo ng pagbabago
mapanlinlang na mga templo
mapagsamantalang mga palasyo
ng iilang mga tuso’t abusado?

sa pasigan ng kamalayan
nagnanaknak makadurog-puso’t nananangis
na mga larawan ng hubad na kaapihan…
silang hinihilamusan
ng dusa’t luha’t panambitan
silang namamaluktot
sa miserableng mga “condo”
sa ilalim ng tulay ng kabiguan
kaulayaw ng mga insekto’t dagang
ayaw kalingain ng di patas na lipunan
silang araw-araw na sinisinghot
alingasaw ng nagbalatay na estero
sa gilid-gilid ng kalunsuran
silang araw-araw na palaman sa tiyan
“pagpag” mula sa inuuod na basurahan
silang hukot na mga aninong naglalamay
sa mga asyenda’t pabrikang walang humpay
sa kanila’y umaalipi’t nanlalamang.

oo, sa pasigan ng kamalayan
di ako magsasawang hintayin
tsunami ng ngitngit ng sambayanan
parang mga bomba rin itong sasabog
sa mesa ng walang pakundangang kapangyarihan
at walang budhing karangyaan
habang dinarambong ng iilang tulisan
pati barya sa lukbutan ng mamamayan
at magiliw na sinasamyo ng diyos ni mammon
halimuyak ng kanilang hugo boss
miyaki’t bulgari’t pierre cardin
oo, may hangganan din ang walanghanggan
kapag nag-alimpuyo’t nanalasa
tsunami ng ngitngit ng sambayanan
di mapipigil ng pader ng kaimbihan
daluyong ng paghingi ng katarungan
delubyo itong lulunod-papatag
sa nabubulok-inuuod na lipunan!

condo — mumunti, tagpi-tagpi’t miserableng bahay ng mga naninirahan na lamang sa ilalim ng mga tulay sa kalunsuran.

pagpag — mga tira-tirang pagkain na itinapon na sa basurahan at pinagtitiyagaang pulutin ng mga maralita, huhugasan at muling iluluto upang sila’y may makain.

hugo boss, miyaki, bulgari at pierre cardin — mamahaling mga pabango ng mayayaman, saanman nanggaling ang kanilang kayamanan.

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