Category Archives: Uncategorized

September Dream Series, 5 of 7

​4:10pm, 23 September 2017
There is no dream to write down today.

But I will write about how I woke up to a morning that crept through cream-colored curtains and faded onto the same shade of cream-colored floors. How I opened my eyes to the sound of your voice and your breath on my neck. How the whole day felt like one long-drawn morning, waking up to changing shades of faint daylight and getting pulled back under the sheets again and again.

I will write about the clouds because you asked me to. But this will not be long because today, the sky is just a white sheet. Not blue nor gray, not periwinkle nor aubergine. On your side of the bed, I could set my sights on the hills of your childhood, rows of rising curves against a colorless sky. The afternoon light is tame. There are no streaks of sunlight that glow against glass windows. There is no grayness pregnant of thunder and rain. The sky is a white sheet. Cool and warm at the same time. It tells us, time is still now. Bask in the moment of stillness, of here and now.

September Dream Series, 4 of 7

3:22am,  22 September 2017

Rooftop, sunset, your city. I had just woken up, it felt like the beginning of a day but the orange and purple stains on the horizon hinted a different hour. I started to feel confused. Gradually and then all at once. I turned around, one full circle pivot and just like that I was inside a room. The color of my walls but your bed, slept in and unmade. Books everywhere – shelves, bedside, tabletop, kitchen sink, floor.  It started to get dark. The TV was on. Sports. Water ran in the bathroom but I could tell no one was inside. I stood there for a few moments waiting for the room to shift, for other things to change, for sounds to leap at me. Nothing. Then you walk toward the bed. From out of nowhere. Still chewing the last of dinner and scratching your stomach. You didn’t see me. You couldn’t see me. But I hid anyway. Not behind anything or under anywhere. I just stepped into the shadow and willed myself to blend in. Laughter. But from where? Under the sheets and the TV and the hallway. Giggling. I started to feel my chest tighten. I was inside a closet now, watching bodies on the bed from the crevice of the closet doors. Now, the light was yellow. Whispers and murmurs and more giggling. Your voice. Music, jazz. I put a hand to my mouth. I felt nauseated. I closed my eyes and tried to hold whatever was inside me struggling to escape my mouth. Somebody opened the closet door and now I am in the front seat of a car. An immeasurable distance seemed to stretch between my seat and the driver’s seat. I couldn’t make out who was behind the steering wheel. The car sped forward. Again, nausea. The drive was rough with sudden stops and sharp turns, clicking of tongues and hands slapping the dashboard. A hand reached out. I felt a brief wave of comfort until the hand passed right in front of me, past my hands, past my body, and reached to open the door on my side. Panic. I slipped out of my seat and into the hot asphalt. I lay there, curled and crying, as cars kept speeding by, drivers shouting at me repeatedly Why do you hate me?! Why do you hate me?! WHY?

And I started asking my own questions. Why are you shouting at me? Why are you still screaming? Why couldn’t you choose me? Why did you break your promise? Why did you say you love me when you couldn’t choose me? Over and over again. Over and over.

Over and over again. And then I was back on a bed, under a yellow comforter, surrounded by pillows, and in your arms. You held me and kept sighing. All I could do was cry. Again and again. Over and over and over again.

September Dream Series, 3 of 7

5:26am, 21 September 2017

It was in a bar we knew. The one that was an old house with wooden floors and dusty artworks hanging everywhere. The tops of the tables were dark wood and the legs of the chairs were loops of old steel. Cold and hard. I look at the details and dread the feeling on my skin.  The lights were dim and air was still. I knew there were other people there, not because I could hear them talk but because I could feel their eyes study me from the shadows. They didn’t move but they blinked and let their cigarettes burn. It was a scene we knew – the scene before Zhang Ziyi and Tony Leung had their duel in the movie we watched on our first day as lovers. This time we star in this dream. Our own duel is about to begin. I walked to the table at the center of the room knowing in my heart that is exactly where I will meet you. But there was no you there. Suddenly, all the surrounding tables, round with four chairs, fixed themselves symmetrically around me. And like the hands of a clock, I moved my eyes from one table to the next looking for you. But there was nobody. I could feel the shadows breathe pity on me. And my chest heaved. I looked again without moving. Suddenly all these things: on one table lay one folded blue shirt, on the next one a black cap, on another a plate of chicken wings, a pack of cigarettes beside a bottle of wine on another, and on the last one a bouquet of dead flowers. Dead blue flowers. My heart sank. All signs of you and yet still no sign of you. I walked to the table with the blue shirt and as I neared, piles and piles of plain colored shirts rose from the floor to my heels. And I began to breathe in the scent of you. And suddenly I could feel the emptiness of the room, the aching longing of my skin. I fell there and wept. And wept and wept and wept. And the dream went on with me there weeping on a pile of empty shirts, in the dim light of an old bar, under the eyes of shadows who couldn’t touch me. I wept. And wept and wept. And I woke up weeping, under the dim light of dawn, holding the only thing I have to remember you, a black shirt now wet with the quiet sobs that called only your name.

September Dream Series, 2 of 7

4:34am, 20 September 2017 

It started with an awareness of the darkness that one tries to envelop himself with in an attempt to drift off. I could feel how cold the air was through the fabric of my socks. It lingered outside for a bit and, sooner than I hoped, the chill began traveling from the soles of my feet to the skin of my legs, backs of my knees, shooting through my thighs. Suddenly, pain. It was a thick hollow feeling that bore through the center of my body, now an unrecognizable piece of flesh curled and trembling on some flat surface which was earlier still a bed. A streetlamp began to flicker a few meters away. An alley started to reveal itself, one spill of an old streetlight at a time. It stretched on to an end only possible in dreams. In an instant, I was up and tracing the pools of light that melted down sewers where another version of darkness took form. As I walked further, a chatter of voices began to build and my ears started feeling tingly. I knew I wanted to make out words and conversations, take out stories from the whispers which I can own and retell to someone. Then I realized there was no one for me to echo whatever conversation I could peel off the walls of chatter that lined the street. I walked on, pace steady and head hung low. I remember telling myself: keep the stride steady and don’t pause, don’t break. No matter how tempting the tone or the cackle of laughter, do not take a single moment to listen eagerly. Let it pass through you. You should also just pass through. And I did. Voices started to become more distinct at every flood of light that fell from a street lamp. The louder the light, the brighter the voices. One voice was from a wedding host, another from some close kin at the peak of a speech. And as I stepped into the dim in-betweens, faint murmurs from party tables and the sound of cutlery and pacified hunger. My ears started to hurt and my mouth began to feel dry from the chest to the throat and tongue and lips. I started walking faster. Spoons tinkled against wine glasses. The alley stretched on. Laughter. Now, shadows. Silhouettes that took form under the light and disappeared as I neared them. I remember yearning for faces to look at. I walked on and started talking at any figure of a body I could get close to. But they all fade past me. I began sentences that died in mid-air, my arms stretching out at the last second, hoping to catch whatever of my stories I gave away to the endless dark street. I could hear myself drown in the chatter. My lips moved but there was nothing there. Murmurs from tables and measured laughter. The alley stretched on. I walked and walked and walked, enveloped in the darkness. Chill in my limbs, hollowness in heart.

September Dream Series, 1 of 7


5:20am, 19 September 2017

There is a stool at the corner of the room with cream walls and a low ceiling. I sit there unmoved and upset, feeling the warm air move through the space and bend where the walls meet, exactly where I sit. It is humid and I am frowning. My hair is much longer than how I want it to be, and sticky and damp and straw blonde. Then I realize the girl in the stool is not me because I am watching her from this distance of my dream and because her hair is a style I will never wear for myself. She is not me but I feel the same furrowing of brows and the heaviness of lips weighed down by a pout and the burning heat of eyes that can barely keep themselves open. I also know there is a party in the distance and I understand how this girl – I feel is me but I know is not – have excluded herself from the merriment. A blue balloon drifts towards her corner of the room and suddenly she is donning a party hat. A cone of chocolate ice cream is melting from her hands, creating a web of dark brown trails on her arms. Then her legs and all over her clothes. The sweetness dries on her skin, the chocolate stains her clothes. Laughter rises and fades. She is alone, still.  Her face hasn’t moved but her sighs are long and drawn out, full of weight she wishes she didn’t bear. I am walking closer to her, I think. Or my eyes are the lens of a camera zooming in closer but not necessarily approaching her. The cone of ice cream melts completely, settling as a puddle of thick cream at her feet. Her limbs are stained with chocolate and she holds out her hands to look at the mess she’s created. They are starting another parlor game. She recognizes the voice leading the crowd and her lips move in tune to a spiel that comes to her by instinct. She licks the chocolate from her palm and wipes her face with the back of her hand. Her face and hair now stained, she is an artwork made of humid sweat and ordinary dessert. I am a camera lens, I am now sure. My sight, the viewfinder. I can see how the skin of her cheeks heaves at the weight of her breath and I breathe her in. I breathe with her. I breathe within. And the corners of my mouth point to the earth, my chest caves, and it is me again in this corner in this ending of this dream.


2017 for 2017, 201-211: O Tore Ng Liwanag

Salin ng ‘O Tower of Light’ ni Pablo Neruda

O tore ng liwanag, kariktang namamanglaw
na inaninagan ang mga kuwintas at estatwa sa dagat,
mata ng tisa, palatandaan ng malawak na tubig, pumalahaw
ng pagluluksa ng ibong-dagat, ngipin ng laot, asawa
ng hanging baybayin, o hiwalay na rosas
mula sa mahabang tangkay ng nayurakang palumpon
na sa kailaliman ay nag-anyong kapuluan,
O likas na tala, luntiang korona,
Nag-iisa sa nakalulumbay na pamumuno,
Hindi pa rin maabot, mailap, naalila
Gaya ng isang patak, isang ubas, gaya ng dagat. 

Inialay kay Queng. 

2017 for 2017, 122-193: For The Absent Father

​A good number of weeks of my life as a five year old
Were spent standing in front of you
Reciting lines from Invictus:
Out of the night that covers me
Black as pit from pole to pole
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul

Whatever grasp I had of speaking, as a child
just a little older than a toddler,
Couldn’t conquer where to put the accent on
And you told me that was fine.

You told me my loud shameless laughter was fine,
Getting scratches all over my knees 
From running and falling on the street was fine,
Trying your beer and inhaling your cigarette was fine
Not getting along with my older sister was fine – 
We would love each other beyond comprehensible reason
And it will make everything fine
— you didn’t tell me this but I discovered it soon enough

And it’s fine.

There were many things you didn’t tell me,
You just made me read a lot of books and rhyming poetry
And maybe what I knew then and needed to know
Was all that was necessary at that time. 

When I was seven and sickly,
You worked away in the big city.
I had to be taken to where you were 
To see big city doctors and hoped for healing.
We spent a few mornings frying frozen squares of cheap ham 
And singing to The Four Non-Blondes
Twenty five years of my life and still
I’m trying to get up that great big hill of hope
For a destination

I’m almost thirty now, and I’m still trying.

I didn’t realize then how far you were from us
And how much farther you’ll become

And I’ll scream from the top of my lungs
What’s going on

You missed too many of the things
Fathers shouldn’t miss in a daughter’s life
And it was fine
Because the first time I had my heart broken by a man
I ran to you first
And you offered me beer and some advice:
There will be more of this heartbreak business
And I had to teach myself to be fine.
I snickered and felt better.

Many men will come and go
And you will remain my first and the worst heartbreak of all

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody but unbowed

A good number of years of my life
Were lived in your absence
And I must confess I have succumbed to the thought 
that ultimately not having you around would be fine

and this is where the conversations 
about absent parents and broken families
take a turn,
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade

Because there would be
Innumerable would haves, could haves, and should haves
That will never cease to haunt us
For a good number of years

There will be only so much we can turn to poetry 
Only enough to forgive ourselves for;

And every time I’ll have to face your grave
The hollowness will remain

With apologies to William Ernest Henley

And The Four Non-Blondes

2017 for 2017, 89-121: Looking Down From A Window 

​They’ve talked about this before:
a heavy, sinking feeling,
canonball to the chest
and cold, cold water,
skin pierced and parched at the same time
clothing limbs you no longer recognize.

This is no different.
It’s all you are
and all you hate,
all that’s left
of you in the next breath.

Shallow, sharp gasps,
stifled cries,
Broken lullabies,
songs to put yourself to sleep.

Throw it to the wind, they say,
all your worries to the wind.

And you will.

Your legs shake in the thrill
Of the rushing air ready to cradle you,
weightless against the wind,
subject to the laws that move
and make the world, one step
towards gravity, the rest follows.

The world spins, will continue to spin.

Everything looks so small
from where you are, tinier,
shrinking further, and
you are as small, shrinking smaller.

There is no bottom for this now.
It only comes after the jump.
After you fall, only then
will you be able to truly fly.

2017 for 2017, 44-88: Lovers By The Weekend

A fortune-teller told me
It’s alright to ask for a miracle
until Friday. And said nothing more
about wishes being granted
whether on Friday or afterwards.
Not a disclaimer, I suppose, just
a mere statement to manage
expectations and grander than usual
hopes bound by schedule and deadlines.

So I thought hard

and came up with, as one would expect,
Images of you and me, gray-haired
and failing memories. Picking out scenes
to be included in the moving reel
Death will play to welcome us into the Afterlife.

I thought of other things I wanted:
Bathtubs full of money tax-free,
or better yet, a world without the need for currency;
A congress void of politicians;
Reforested forests and plastic-free oceans;
Neighborhoods everywhere, lawns open
teeming with Bob Marley’s herb of choice.

So I assigned one wish for every day of the week,
and hoped for more chances of a miracle
coming true. When Friday came,
I offered my miracle for yours.
A fitting finale, a fairytale happy ending:
My wish is for your wish to come true.

This is why the lovers always win
even if they never join the lottery.
The strongest ones will stay together
even if death parts their physical bodies.

Because stronger than any other fanatic’s religion
is a true lover’s affectionate devotion
founded in the temple of a body and the altar of a gaze,
in the divinity of a heart and the sanctity of desire.

No deadline for a miracle
could render impossible or merely whimsical,
always exceeding expectations
and never bound by the hour.

I don’t need to think hard
About wishing for the miracle of you.
Because no magic is needed here,
it shouldn’t be too grand to be hoped,
it shouldn’t be that unthinkable
for me to belong with you.

2017 for 2017, 19-43: Playmate


Let’s try this again:
I’ll hold my hands over my eyes
and count to ten.
Then set off seeking, never finding
and most probably thinking out loud,
how well you’ve made yourself
impossible to be found.

Take me by surprise again.
I know it but never see it coming
exactly when I’m mindlessly
looking about,
put your hands over my eyes
until the whole world turns dark.

Let’s try this again,
again a tap on the shoulder
and then we begin
running to each other
then away, faster,
losing our breaths, arms outstretched.
Never really getting caught
or ever catching the other.

Let’s fall to the ground,
breaths heavy and hearts full,
ready to play another round.
Another game, again and again.

(C) Anj Heruela, January 6 2017

2017 for 2017, 1-18: Instructions for a Fairytale 

Instructions for a Fairytale 

Once upon a time
A chapter was written
And another chapter awaited writing
While other written chapters
Were torn and crumpled,
Excluded from an ending
constantly altered.

Long, long ago we started
In a world which now feels
so far, far away.
We’ve journeyed far and wide
To catch some semblance of an ever after
And we’ll just have to write on,
whatever the weather,
One chapter after another, until

The end.

(C) Anj Heruela, January 3 2017

En Route to 2017

On the road, en route to 2017 in a staring contest with 2016’s last sunset. 
Cosmic bodies will keep moving in circles, defining our days and nights, leaving skyscapes to lose our breaths over, and then all too soon gone. 
Cosmic, to be on the road as the sun sets on this year, the daylight disappearing on the horizon; 
and just like that, you breathe all the bumps of the road away and all you remember are the streaks of light burning the sky into dusk, into night, and for a brief moment everything is beautiful again, 
You believe everything will be right by daybreak again,
You feel ready to stare into a new dawn again. 
Happy new year, folks.

​Dearest Tito Ernie

Dearest Tito Ernie,

This is how we know a legend has truly left a legacy — this is proof of how well you’ve taught us to do what we do:
That our timelines teem with stories of you teaching us how to tell stories;

Stories of how we learned to teach by watching you touch people’s minds and hearts through telling stories;

Stories of how we’ve sworn our lives to the craft of storytelling and devoted ourselves to teaching so we may touch minds and hearts in ways you have, in ways you’ve touched ours, forever changing the way we look at learning, living, and loving;
Stories of how you taught us to leave not one grain of rice uneaten to honor every Filipino farmer’ sweat and blood;
Stories of how you taught us to clean up after ourselves, every space we walk into and use – especially the theater and the classroom – because the spaces we are allowed to dwell in, these spaces we share with others are sacred;
Stories of genuine faith in people’s capacities – how the blind can tell the most colorful of stories and those who walk in crutches dance with the most heartfelt grace – in truly believing in the fullness of every soul;
Stories of how we have been humbled – shame on us if we had to complain about sleeping on a teachers desk in the very same classroom where we will hold a workshop the next day or about needing to walk through forest thickets to be able to perform toilet duties during our community outreaches, our tiny bubbles of self-indulgence burst, so that instead of becoming so absorbed in our personal comforts we begin to see the value of what others have to endure so that, in turn, we learn to value the gift of life much, much more;
Stories of love, of clay pots finding their rightful pot covers, of faith in the way the universe works ❤
This is how we cope — by sharing a piece of our own memories with you, every single story a life lesson in itself. We say our pieces, burst into tears in each others words, we tell and retell and heed each other’s telling; we create and recreate pieces of you from our memories to hold on to some semblance of strength, something to keep us upright in this world you’ve taught us to feel thankful for and still strive to make better every day. 
Mumsie, you are our master teacher, our mentor, and we will tell and retell your stories to the young and old, until they can tell their own stories to others who have to tell their own. 
My fondest memory of you is your variety of claps, all sorts of applause imaginable, many of which invented at a moment’s notice: fireworks clap, rain clap, barbershop clap, Coke clap, silent clap. The simplest gesture of appreciation often taken for granted but you’ve made it so special. 
It’s our turn to applaud you and the life you’ve lived. It’s an applause that will echo in every story beyond this lifetime. 
We love you Tito Ernie. A love that, through you, we’ve learned to deepen in every way.

Alliances on Chico St.

For Maricres who moved to Chico St. and stayed to hold the fort 

Our street was named after a small sweet brown round fruit. It was seven houses long and innumerable friendships in depth. At both ends where the street bends, basketball rings stood and every square meter was a space to dance and sing and cherish childhood.

In the beginning, the lot across our house was empty. Until, one day, hills of gravel and sand began to sprout from the sidewalk and a dainty bungalow with a green roof that matched a green gate grew out of our makeshift jungle of banana trees and flowering weeds.

I was just beginning to discover the pain of knee wounds and elbow scrapes when you came to town.

It was also a time when I began to learn how important it was to create alliances with other human beings outside of one’s own home. You came at the perfect time.

You stood there in your fancy red dress with your quiet brother and your parents. I was looking outside the living room window while my mind tried to find different names to match with your face. Your name sounded like it deserved to be written in cursive and pink ink.

I called you by the last syllable of your name, enjoying how such a male nickname got redefined by such a pretty, dainty playmate. And how you owned that masculine strength with your graceful femininity so well. You biked like my brothers and danced like my sister. You held high scores in family computer games and crocheted the finest tabletop decor. You commanded an army in pretend street battles where, after the game was through, every ‘soldier’ of our street wanted to court you. You sang, and laughed, and played ball, and baked goodies, and took care of dogs, and comforted crying girls, and challenged older bullies, and created friendships that you intended to keep.


More than two decades pass and we are here. My family’s old house stands empty across your dainty bungalow with the colors of the gate and the roof now changed. There are more houses in the street and a lot more stranger faces. A new generation of rowdy children of the afternoon sun now run from one end of the street to the other, discovering their own alliances they can create outside of their parents’ homes. Their parents sit at the porch and watch their children with the allies they used to rule the streets with. You are among them and you still lead the pack.

I am not there anymore but I am with you. Because this alliance between us created outside of my family’s home has taught me that every friendship made and kept in whatever part of the world we choose creates a home we can go to. The bond remains strong even when memories begin to fade and the names of streets begin to change.

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The seasons dance their way through the Earth’s cycles

And we are caught in-between changing winters and summers

Hoping for promises of autumn and spring:

The fall and the bloom,

A blanket of leaves and flowers,

The tops of trees on our feet,

A definite beginning from a calculated end.


But this is not what we have.


What we have are grains of sands in our hair

And the burn of an overpresent sun.

We dust off the memories of the Earth from freshly ironed fabrics

and the heat cools in carefully measured room temperatures.

Outside, the wind tells us the truth.


The scent from the scarf will fade in a few degrees,

And the comfort of home will take over the thrill

Of unknown lands and the unfamiliar tropical breeze.


We let it sink in.


Outside, the sun sets invisibly

In a darkness so certain,

We no longer need to see.  

We let the night rest on our dreams.

The death of daylight is done, almost,

But unfinished – we chase the dream of auburn sunsets and turquoise seas.


To the east, it will rise

In the absence of autumn, pure

Blue skies and scorching truths,

Unclouded and brave,

The taste of exotic kisses and

Promises to be fulfilled.


In the west, a shadow rises to a different direction

But sways to the tug of a persistent heartbeat,

Mimicking the pulse of lips waiting

For the business to be finished,

For the heat of desire to be eagerly fulfilled.


The cycles of the Earth have changed

Teaching us what is too much and too little,

Too cold or too hot,

Dry and damp and altogether,

What we have done and what we should not.


Doused with a love so timeless,

So eager beyond distance and time

We are and we are not

Yet. But we will become,

What the voice of your eyes desires,

What the next season ushers in,

Another change of weather,

Another movement of the sun

Unpredictable, but exactly

Where our nights and days ought to be.


In the east, the sun rises,

In the west, the light fades,

The days and the nights move after each other

In a seemingly endless, eternal chase. 


She of the Sun (2016)

She of the Sun

For all the sons and daughters whose sources have made way for the sun.


She leaves the doors open

to let the light through,

make way for a breeze,

let the house breathe.


It was as if she knew exactly how the wind blew

so she could summon the scent of home into the rooms.


 She draws the curtains to the movements of the sun.


She, daughter of sweet siestas,

sister of Sundays

set to songs of sepia,

immortalized in hums,

merging with the rising

trail of smoke, scent

of finely crafted suppers.


Mother, feeder of my hunger

Reason I am full and always wanting more

Wanting to be more, for her, 

from the first step and every step further.


She whispers that I can fly.


She, lap for my naps,

fingers through my pigtails

and braided birthdays.

Fluffing the ruffles of party skirts,

source of rippling laughter.

The one at the end of an afternoon’s run,

arms outstretched, my destination.

Cure to splinters and scratches,

that touch, tender.  Kiss on the forehead,

tuck of the blanket  after the lullaby. She

stands by. Mother, maker of futures,

guardian of dreams.


She, lady who flips the flaps

of schoolday lunch bags,

quick with ease, sealing for me

a special taste, firm

certainty. Like an embrace

after a heartbreak. She knows,

she whispers: It will all be better.


Like the way a dark hallway is lit by the afternoon,

through the windows, the heavens flood in.

Bringer of light, she draws the curtains.


The doors are open. Still.

The wind blows a cool breeze.

The rooms are as she would please.

She lives.

Light falls, it rests.

She rests.

Everything is at ease.



Originally written around four years ago for another friend’s mother’s passing. Revisited and tweaked the verses for another friend’s mother who has made way for the sun. 

Hopefully, I will also be able to complete the verses about my own father’s journeys soon. Or whenever the heart and soul would please. 


Isda at Dagat

Kapag iniisip ko kung paano tayo naging isda sa paningin mo, ang naiisip ko,


Hindi ako isda.


Ako ay dagat

Ang kandungan ko ay pampang kung saan

Paulit-ulit na humahalik ang mga alon, dumadating at nang-iiwan


Parang kalawakan na sinasabi nilang patuloy na lumalawak,

Wala pang taong nakasisisid sa tunay na lalim ng dagat.


Wala tayong alam.


Anumang kapalaran ang naisin nating makamtan

Ay makakamit. Nang maaaring hindi natin nababatid.

Kung ikaw at ako ay mga isdang binabaybay ang mga alon,

Walang daan,

Ano ang katiyakan ng pagtatagpo,

may dapat bang katakutang paghihiwalay?


Kung mababatid natin ang kaligayahan sa maikli nating buhay

Kung hindi tayo magpapakulong sa mga palagay

Kung ikaw ay isda at ang hangin ay alon

Kung ang pag-ibig ang tagapagtulak sa ating makaahon

Kung ang pagdama ay paglangoy, ang pagpapaanod ay pagpapalaya

Anong katiyakang hindi ito dadating sa wala?




At kung ganoon man,

Anumang meron at wala ang ating kahinatnan

Kung may dagat na lalanguyan

At dalampasigang matatagpuan

May kailangan bang katakutan?


Wala. Kahit saan, kailanman

Maisasakatuparan ang kapalaran.

Walang takot na dapat maramdaman.


Lahat tayo, isda

Lumalangoy hanggang sa dulo.

Lahat tayo, dalampasigan:

Ang simula na sumasalubong

sa nilalangoy na dulo.



Profiles: Her Royal Sweetness

How could crimson even lay itself over an entire summer’s tan? But there it was, crawling proudly from the slope of her cheeks where her smile begins.

Her feelings could not be kept secret. Love spread itself light pink across her skin, from the edges of her soul to her lips. She blinked in flutters that sent eyelashes dancing on its tips, to an orchestra of bees buzzing beneath the flesh of her left breast. Love glistened like honey from her eyes and dripped thick and sweet from her core.

She filled the air with the scent of sweetcakes and wildflowers that trailed from the hive of her exhales, hung upon his every inhale, swinging with his every breath.

Profiles: The Bystander

He was knee-deep into the morning, following the spill of sunrise from one empty shed to the next busted stoplight. The night has buried itself on his skin, deep into the bones of his cheeks, throbbing around his eyes, slipping into the cave of his throat, settling in the hollow den of his chest where myths and legends rest with the rest of the city’s dust and grit.  

He gathered the evenings and hid them there, plucking out stories that lapped back and forth from the streets to his lips. His voice broke over alleyways and street corners in surges of whispered secrets and gushes of revelations: adventures of infidels and hushed preys, giggling schoolgirls and the thumps of fists. He told them again and again until the waves of daylight have washed it clean. The stories floated from his veins, drowned in the high noon, rippled in the sunset, and, in the moonrise, murmured true.


The morning is humid with the subtle patter
Of undisclosed necessities and rain.
The same headlines sit at the kitchen counter
Beside stale crumbs, old bread, and anticipated coffee stains.

The walk to the corner is quick, immediately over,
There and gone again, another fix of caffeine
Too early we clock in, too late we stay
Too many other minutes spent
Too many thoughts away.

There is nothing new except another morning,
Another second gone cold
And the first one whiled away.


The memory of last night spreads itself on my bed,
Thinly: a sheet between the pillow and my head
Crumpling itself beneath the weight of thoughts.
Curling up into a lump of discarded moments, scratches of scribbles of empty words.
The creases crawl from the hours long gone
to trace a map that slices and cuts the skin on my nape.
The memory of your blank eyes claws a path that trickles from my spine
to the small of my back to the ends of my thighs to the soles of my feet.
I do not bleed.

Only, I am drained
Bit by bit by bit by bit

By blood, by skin,
by love, by soul.

Haiku: Say It Again?

All the words you say:

Quick, hurried scribbles lined up

Up, up, and away.

for the bookends of this Monday 

Iyong Ngiti (Salin ng ‘Tu Risa’ ni Pablo Neruda)

Iyong Ngiti

Salin ng Tu Risa ni Pablo Neruda

Pagkaitan mo na ako ng pagkain, kung nais mo
Pigilan ang aking paghinga pero
huwag mo naman sana akong pagdamutan ng iyong ngiti.

Huwag mong alisin ang rosas,
ang sibat na iyong kinakalbit,
ang bulwak ng tubig
na umaagos sa iyong tuwa,
daluyong ng pilak na iyong isinisilang.

Nagbabalik ako mula sa sagarang pagdurusa,
Tumatangging tumanaw pa
Sa nagbibitak-bitak na lupang inaamag na’t nabubulok,
Pero sa tuwing umuusbong ang iyong halakhak
Upang tawagin ako saanmang alapaap mapadpad,
Ang lahat ng pintuan ng buhay
Ay isa-isang nabubuksan.

Ikaw ang silay ng liwanag
sa mga pinakamadilim na oras, irog.
At kung sakali mang makasalubong mo sa lansangan
ang bakas ng aking dugo,
Tumawa ka,
Sapagkat ang iyong tawa
Ay tatangan sa aking mga kamay
Na parang bagong espada.

Sa dalampasigan sa taglagas,
Kailangang pumailanlang ang lagaslas
ng iyong halakhak.
Sa tagsibol naman, irog,
Asam ko ang iyong ngiti
Tulad ng pinakahinihintay na pamumukadkad
Ng mga asul na talulot,
rosas ng bayang umaalingawngaw.

Tawanan mo ang gabi,
Ang araw, ang buwan,
Tawanan ang pulu-pulupot
Na mga daanan ng kapuluan
Tawanan itong malamyang
Nilalang na iniibig ka
ngunit kapag ako’y dumilat
at muling pumikit,
kapag pumaroon ang mga yapak ko,
kapag nanumbalik,
ikaila mo na sa akin ang pagkain, hangin
liwanag, at tagsibol
pero huwag na huwag ang iyong ngiti
dahil ito ang aking ikamamatay.

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Dress Codes

Sleeping in your clothes feels like a familiar song after the fourth glass of wine: a recognizable comfort, a precise memory lost in surges of warm tingles in the veins of the body.

I slip into your old jacket dirtied by the months that have passed and acquaint myself with the feeling that you wear everyday. The scent of your daily adventures slips from your sleeve onto my pillow and makes its way to my dreams. I hide my face in your familiar smell, in the stains of memories I know nothing of, and stay there until the sky changes its color and the alarm clock meets me halfway into morning.

My scent meets yours in the slew of thread and fabric, and I make sure to envelope each stitch with my own scent so that when you wear this feeling again, you will find yourself lost in my own world, sown neatly into every loop of every dream of mine you’ve unknowingly visited.

I wear your clothes to clothe you eventually; scent, sense, and sleep.

Slipping into your clothes feels like a warm bath on an uneventful December dawn: comforting and necessary. I welcome you with open pores and stand still as you rush from the tips of my hairs to the ends of my toes. I let you drip into my every inch, bare naked, until I am clean and new, until my body feels ready for another cold holiday. And when I think it is all over, I slip into another bath of you and you wash all over me until a puddle of you grows steadily at my feet.

I wear you like this, soaped and rinsed, clean.

I slip into you through your clothes, one sleeve after another, resting my thoughts into your folded collar, buttoning myself into the closest I could get to your embrace. This is how I wrap myself in your arms. This is how I sleep with you at night. This is how I keep you close, a version of you that will never go away. I slip into you one evening after another until the scent wears out and the sleeve begins to know more of me than most of you. I slip into you until there’s nothing left of you to slip into. I slip into myself and into the dreams that wait after midnight where I make my way to you while you try to find your way among rows and rows of piles and piles of folded clothes. I slip into this dream again and again, in the fold of your jacket and the curve of your neckline, unbuttoned and open, shivering in the imagined warmth of your skin. I sleep inside your sleeve again and again until your scent is tattooed on my skin.

I fall asleep like this night after night, with the traces of you under my pillow and in my closet. I collect you limb after limb through a checkered shirt, a hat, a scarf, an old jacket. I build you into my life piece by piece in thieving slow certainty. This will do for now until I no longer need to take your clothes from you, when one day you decide to leave a piece of you with me in the morning after we slip out of our own shirts and under the sheets, into each other’s dreams and each other’s lips. Your limbs will be entangled with mine, and your scent will be my own exhale as I am in the whiff of your every breath. We will be puddles in each other’s feet, swimming in a sea of you and me, travelling in a common subconscious, escaping evenings and evading dawns, forgetting afternoons and cheating time. We will clothe each other in our own skin, bare and fully clothed of you and I, we are cool and warm at the same time.

And so tonight, I slide into the ritual of dressing up in your clothes again, pushing every button into its rightful hole just as you would. Good old fashion; good, old-fashioned; good, old, fashioned. Good. I run my fingers along the edge of the checkered cloth and imagine the tip of your finger there, tracing the lines with me until drowse sets in, until I have scrubbed myself clean, until I have hung you deep inside my closet, until I have found you finding your way around the maze of my dreams. I will stay here, inside this piece of you, oh this peace of you, until I feel your breath on my nape, your caress on my skin, your eyes on me – steady, while the sky changes its color for another morning.

I will wear myself inside your sleeve, again and again, until the taste of your soul slips under my skin.

Once Upon Another Murder

She saw it in her sleep,

how they were tore him from the gut and unmasked his skull with claws that grew itself from anger and cleaved at souls it did not recognize
His blood, thick with legends, rich as moist earth, refused to drip away from his flesh and stopped at the edge of his wounds
His body burned burgundy as she stood there, the seven oceans foaming from her eyes,
The last of his kiss flaking away from her nape, her heart drowning in the cage of her hollow chest

Was there nothing she could do from that end? Probably

Wake up

In another tragedy, the poet still sits motionless
except for the eyes that dart from the keyboard to the screen, like a lover accused of infidelity, guilty of losing love

Like a crook hiding something, like a sinner who couldn’t look up.

A witness moved but not moving, unacceptably still.

No euphemism is offered here, only
another thought for the fallen
for the ones whose land is pulled away from their feet

for the generation of legends forgotten

for our people’s grave: a history we aimlessly repeat

365 for 2015: Smells of Sunday

There it goes:
Coffee gone cold,
Traces of burned tobacco,
The stain of extended conversations
Catching up with the dews
Fading from the the first ray
Peeking at the tips of leaves.
The last vehicle speeds away
From Saturday past. Midnight
plus one bottle equals new days
handed over, mist and steam and
Enlightenments amidst reunited laughter
And fog. Cool dawns chased away
By sunny-side ups served
After eight. The orange juice trickles
Unnoticed between the sleepy shuffle
Of foosteps moving toward
The end of the weekend’s first moments,
Awake and bright-tinged,
Settling to begin.




Seen. Today at 9:47AM


 Wake up kids, we’ve got the dreamer’s disease, aged or teens—


Awake and not quite,

three icons blink blue, unread

a line of 248 tweets wait, unseen

and the refresh button screams–

Wake up kids!

What’s on your mind?

(Arrow Pointing Upwards) New Stories. Click.

Attention: Did you know that

Bernadette Villanueva changed her profile picture.


Catch Fernandez with Den Jalbuena. “Last night…”

Comment: Ahem.

Humphrey Bowguard added a new life event: Traveled to Sri Lanka.

Ignore. For envious reasons. I mean, obviously.

I mean obvious reasons. Not envy.

Refresh, new news? Something important perhaps–


35 of your friends like this.

So maybe you should, too. Like.

No clicking, no reading, just


Suggested App: Music Messenger. Finally You Can Send Music.



Time to take a break.

Like. Share. Like Again.

See? #overworked #underpaid #discontent

The Dawning of A New Age: Occupy The World Wide Web

How Netizens Are Forming The Future With Just A Click


Lady Ann Sho invited you to like Manila Today.

Share. What about Manila Tomorrow? #witty


25 Ultimate Summer Destinations

13 Long Weekends of 2015

12 Movies That Will Teach You the Secret To Living On The Edge

21 Life Hacks for People On The Go

StuffYouShouldKnow dot—

Completely irrelevant.

Like why women shave, shouldn’t shave,

are against shaving, are against those are against shaving.

Emma Watson Threatened With Nude Photo Leakage Because of UN Speech

Facebook To Begin Charging Users $2.99 per month.

Rage, rage, against the dying of the light.


“Go ahead and add this response to Scotland’s argument for why they don’t need independence

it can be helpful like that.”

From the Guardian.



Rallying Nun Remember What It Was Like Under Marcos

Anticipated Power Crisis Worse Than During Ramos Administration

Whatever Happened to GMA?

Aquino remembers a pretty woman in Boston neighborhood.



“As you walk and eat and travel,

Be where you are. Otherwise

You will miss out most of your life.”

-Gautama Buddha


3484 Likes. 906 shares. 2343 comments.

Wake up kids, we’ve got the dreamer’s disease.







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This was posted 25 revolutions ago.

In Transit

February 12, 2013 9:25am DFA Passport Division

She sprays on some alcohol to cleanse the dirt of the city from her fingers. Strangers riding trains have stained her skin, travelling from their sweaty palms to the steel rod she holds onto to stay upright. She feels a slight sting and notices a red spot on the knuckle of her left middle finger. Another wound. The pain doesn’t last and it doesn’t bother her. There are things we get used to as we get older.


Another phone beeps in the room and though she knows it is not hers, she reaches for her phone inside her bag and browses through the messages she’s already seen. She gets distracted easily these days, never able to keep focus and finish one thing in one sitting, not even a meal. Lists are slipped in between every other page, teeming with tasks due before the current date. She rolls the gum in her mouth. It has gone stale. Another man chews loudly along the row where she is seated. She glances at him then plucks out one of her lists to roll around the gum she just spit out.


She wants to write about the train ride. Today, people lined up anticipating where the train doors would open for them, unlike before when everybody bunched up in an entropy of hurry, commuters have finally found a method to their comings and goings. But that didn’t mean that they stopped pushing the other while being pushed by another. It’s all a study in physics – the motion, lack of motion, the friction, the force.

How To Love A Girl Who Writes

she will make you immortal
in her heart and mind, in not very few pages
you will stay even if you leave

ang mga di ko natutunan

North Fort

Unang beses ko ito.

Nakakatawang alalahanin yung pakiramdam habang sumusulat sa’yo. Nakangisi akong mag-isa. Bawat matatapos na sentence, may tawa ako. At mas nakakatawa kung malalaman mong ilang araw kong pinag-isipan kung paano ko sasabihin ang mga nasabi ko sa sulat. Tina-type ko sa cellphone yung mga naiisip kong magandang segue para dumulo ang sulat ko sa napakalalim na — “ang cute mo”. Kapag may naaalala pa nga akong gusto kong sabihin, inuulit-ulit ko sa isip para hindi makalimutan. Ilang byahe rin sa bus na puro yung sulat na yun lang ang minumuni-muni ko.

Ayokong isulat agad hanggat pakiramdam ko hindi pa tapos, at hanggat may parte pa akong hindi nasasabi o isang bagay na naguguluhan pa ako. Ayokong isulat agad kasi baka hindi ako makapagpigil at ipadala na agad sayo kahit malata pa. Pero napagod na rin ako kakadraft. Dumating ang araw ng paghuhukom, binitay ko na ang paghihintay…

View original post 164 more words

365 for 2012: (10) An Exercise in Writing Letters No. 1

The thoughts ran faster than the words could
arrange themselves neatly in line. Properly
waiting to nod their heads
at the end of the sentences.

So I rearrange them again.

And in carefully placed punctuations
and calculated silences between syllables,
I fold myself silently. Breaking
into shards and splinters
so that in the gaps where the thoughts are unsaid
pieces of me could slip in quietly,
almost unseen.
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RIP Seamus Heaney

The strange thing about the death of people whose  names you read on covers of books and under the titles of your youth’s defining texts (so you swore), is that the tug to the dirge of irreconcilable sadness comes from feeling of being so attached to them yet never having known them. And then the pain doubles. 

It is one my more dreary weekend mornings, when I wake facing the wall to the sound of a faint alert tone of one of the many seemingly unimportant notifications. ‘What exciting news is it, this time?’ I asked myself, honestly hoping for some mundane chat from one boy or another. And there it was, New York times broke the news to me. I find myself suddenly upright, searching among stacks of books and papers and even through folders in my computer, then flipping through the pages and remembering, remembering, remembering.

We all have that one  poem (or two or three, whatever) we’ll always go back to. Here’s mine.

Thank you Mr. Heaney. You will live forever in these pages, corners folded, marked, and annotated — your words rewritten in secret journals, repeated among friends.




He would drink by himself   
And raise a weathered thumb   
Towards the high shelf,   
Calling another rum   
And blackcurrant, without   
Having to raise his voice,   
Or order a quick stout   
By a lifting of the eyes   
And a discreet dumb-show   
Of pulling off the top;   
At closing time would go   
In waders and peaked cap   
Into the showery dark,   
A dole-kept breadwinner   
But a natural for work.   
I loved his whole manner,   
Sure-footed but too sly,   
His deadpan sidling tact,   
His fisherman’s quick eye   
And turned observant back.   
To him, my other life.   
Sometimes, on the high stool,   
Too busy with his knife   
At a tobacco plug   
And not meeting my eye,   
In the pause after a slug   
He mentioned poetry.   
We would be on our own   
And, always politic   
And shy of condescension,   
I would manage by some trick   
To switch the talk to eels   
Or lore of the horse and cart   
Or the Provisionals.   
But my tentative art   
His turned back watches too:   
He was blown to bits   
Out drinking in a curfew   
Others obeyed, three nights   
After they shot dead   
The thirteen men in Derry.   
PARAS THIRTEEN, the walls said,   
BOGSIDE NIL. That Wednesday   
Everyone held   
His breath and trembled.   
It was a day of cold   
Raw silence, wind-blown   
surplice and soutane:   
Rained-on, flower-laden   
Coffin after coffin   
Seemed to float from the door   
Of the packed cathedral   
Like blossoms on slow water.   
The common funeral   
Unrolled its swaddling band,   
Lapping, tightening   
Till we were braced and bound   
Like brothers in a ring.   
But he would not be held   
At home by his own crowd   
Whatever threats were phoned,   
Whatever black flags waved.   
I see him as he turned   
In that bombed offending place,   
Remorse fused with terror   
In his still knowable face,   
His cornered outfaced stare   
Blinding in the flash.   
He had gone miles away   
For he drank like a fish   
Nightly, naturally   
Swimming towards the lure   
Of warm lit-up places,   
The blurred mesh and murmur   
Drifting among glasses   
In the gregarious smoke.   
How culpable was he   
That last night when he broke   
Our tribe’s complicity?   
‘Now, you’re supposed to be   
An educated man,’   
I hear him say. ‘Puzzle me   
The right answer to that one.’
I missed his funeral,   
Those quiet walkers   
And sideways talkers   
Shoaling out of his lane   
To the respectable   
Purring of the hearse…   
They move in equal pace   
With the habitual   
Slow consolation   
Of a dawdling engine,   
The line lifted, hand   
Over fist, cold sunshine   
On the water, the land   
Banked under fog: that morning   
I was taken in his boat,   
The Screw purling, turning   
Indolent fathoms white,   
I tasted freedom with him.   
To get out early, haul   
Steadily off the bottom,   
Dispraise the catch, and smile   
As you find a rhythm   
Working you, slow mile by mile,   
Into your proper haunt   
Somewhere, well out, beyond…   
Dawn-sniffing revenant,   
Plodder through midnight rain,   
Question me again.

365 for 2013: (8) finally, the calm after the storm

Has it been two months already? I was just about to make coffee.

And I’m right there all over again.
Listening to guitar strings and a dying storm,
Waiting for morning winds to clear
the streets, these leaves, torn from home.


The Necessary Year-End/New-Year Post

And then the inevitable question is raised: where do I begin?

It’s quite tempting to do an assessment of my 2012 Must-Accomplish list  (yes, it’s a must-accomplish list and not quite a list of resolutions so that the move forward  is not solely based on improving what could have been done better in the past but actually includes setting new never-even-imagined-i-could-do goals for the self) and then write my way towards my 2013 Must-Accomplish list but that’s an easy route to take. Apparently, I tend to look for more complicated paths.

Or not. Yeah. Let’s just get started whichever way and get this over and done with.

So maybe I should begin by saying that I’m still as fickle minded and as insanely self-conscious as I have always been. There’s nothing to change about that since there isn’t really any harm being done, except that the writing tends to extend itself and maybe I should save some space and stop arresting myself in every sentence that follows. (Aaand here I go again. And again.)

Don’t we all want to just make sure we’re doing everything the way it should be done while at the same time giving ourselves the liberty to plunge into the next spontaneous adventure, eyes closed and breaths held? Yes, that may have sounded kind of contradictory at some point and while maybe a fraction of the population are just on either ends of the spectrum, the majority would be working for a healthy mix of the certain and uncertain in their lives. Yes, you can schedule when you’re going to  jump off the cliff but on the splitsecond that your feet leave solid ground, time and space may cease to exist. There’s only you, the jump, and the fall. The next thing you know, you’ve landed somewhere far more awesome than where you came from.

I look at the list which I wrote at the back of my first journal from last year and realize that if I use it as the sole measure of the past year’s fulfillment, then I would emerge as an utter failure. I was only able to achieve a third of the list, 15 out of 45 things I set out to accomplish for myself. One would consider it a total booboo especially if I say that I don’t even remember having written more than half of it. But, see, that was the actual game plan. To list, forget, live, then reflect.

A friend shared with me before that he would write his list of goals for the year and hide it away only to look at it after 365 days and see what he’s been able to achieve. If there were things he could tick off the list, he was extremely happy to be able to do so. As for the rest of the items that remain to be accomplished, then they are just that, carry-overs to the new year’s list. There’s no room for regret or should-have-could-haves because the list was merely a push to pump up the start of the year. The rest of the 365 days, you live life as you should, present in every moment and not just  tied down to lists and schedules.  We already have so many tasks that take up space in our planners every day, we don’t have to use a row of boxes wanting check marks to live each day by.

Up until Christmas eve, I still couldn’t feel the spirit of the holidays. Not because I was nursing an inner Grinch but because I just could not believe that it was December already. I was telling a  friend two days before the new year  that I feel like there should be two more weeks to the month just to allow myself to wrap up everything that have taken  place. So many things have happened in 2012 and so much more could have happened. But nothing that happened or didn’t happen makes me feel bad that it did or didn’t. Every single day I would have as it was lived.

There are things that take place without any planning it. These things could even bear more value than even the biggest goal you set out to conquer for the year. In the 45 items in my list, not even half of it could compare to the best moments of my 2012. All the surprises of  random opportunities to move into new directions, befriend strangers, get your hands into work you think you will never do, and even the plummet to bottoms you didn’t think would be dug up for you, proved to be the awesome and highly necessary rollercoaster ride that is 2012. I look back and think that it just couldn’t have ended so soon.

This is my twenty-fifth year. When I thought I would set out to do one thing, I find myself in action at so many other things that I could do and that need to be done. It doesn’t mean an overhaul of my passions or the abandon of a predisposed purpose. It is merely embracing the true essence of the possible. “Who would have thought…” would be my favorite reflective phrase for the moment. Certainly, not I, and gladly so. Honestly, I’m still grappling with every experience from the last twelve months, writing and rewriting every tale, hoping to archive each memory. I don’t know if I ever really could or if I even should, but then this entry, and every past entry I have, published here or otherwise, is evidence to the tremendous year that was.

So for this year I still made a list. I actually even have a timeline for this year, carefully cutting up the twelve months into four quarters and assigning major goals in each time frame. But that’s that. An attempt to imagine my 2013. In every shot to grab life by the neck, another head will just pop up. Then it’s an entirely new geste altogether.  And then there’s another aspect of yourself you will discover, another chance for you to extend your capacity as a being of the universe, to live bigger, live fuller and measure the year beyond its 365 days.

And as Fiona Apple put it,

Be kind to me or treat me mean,

I’ll make the most of it

I’m an extraordinary machine.


365 for 2012: (67) Resolute

It is not that one has not tried again and again to alter the course of the lines or the sound of the waves that bounce off the page. It is that there are stubborn thoughts that will not yield. It is that it already is what it should be as it was first conceived: as if  without beginning but with a definite end. 


And if my fingers find themselves

lost through your hair again,

if i take a whiff of you again

own you for one brief moment again

Then let go. And lose all these

that I’ve known. Will they say

it’s so wrong? Then set fire

to my soul. Nothing changes.

At the thought of your eyes alone

I burn. Again and again.

And from the ashes at your feet

I rise, again and again.


From the beginnings of the last quarter

October 16, 2012


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HAHAHAHA. –> “It’s not all bad,” she says, sitting across from me outside on a wooden bench while we drink our light beers. “At least, you’ll definitely be writing more.”

365 for 2012: (66) She of the Sun

For all the sons and daughters whose sources have made way for the sun.

She leaves the doors open

to let the light through,

make way for a breeze,

let the house breathe.


It was as if she knew exactly how the wind blew

so she could summon the scent of summer into the rooms.


She draws the curtains to the movements of the sun.


She, daughter of sweet siestas,

sister of Sundays

set to songs of sepia,

immortalized in hums,

merging with the rising

trail of smoke, scent

of finely crafted suppers.


She, lap for my naps,

fingers through my pigtails

and braided birthdays.

Fluffing the ruffles of party skirts,

source of rippling laughter.

The one at the end of an afternoon’s run,

arms outstretched, my destination.

Cure to splinters and scratches,

that touch, tender.  Kiss on the forehead,

tuck of the blanket  after the lullaby. She

stands by. She, guardian of dreams.


She, lady who flips the flaps

of schoolday lunch bags,

quick with ease, firm

certainty. Like an embrace

after a heartbreak. She knows,

she whispers: It will all be better.


Like dark hallways being lit by the afternoon,

through the windows, the heavens flood in.

Bringer of light, she draws the curtains.


The doors are open. Still.

The wind blows a warm breeze.

The rooms are as she would please.

Light falls, it rests.

Everything is at ease.

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365 for 2012: (60) Torn and Folded

at the back of a receipt, a scribble:

you held me as if knowing exactly

fading against creases: to find

torn edges, some parts– missing.


like a response to a song

heard on the car heading home,

roll the words around your head

over and over. burst of genius,

cloud of smoke. fireworks.


the view outside complements

a stirring within. it is the road’s

usual, flash of yellow lights, blurring

facades, the faceless rush. fleeting,

every inch you know and then don’t.


in the corner of your back pocket, another secret:


your breath travels to corners

your lips refuse to touch

your eyes, my salvation

my kiss, our sin


the adventure you seek

is the risk you couldn’t take.

moving further, we accelerate.

the other foot already on the brakes.


her letters are neatly piled inside

your heart. waiting to be opened.


my words are crumpled

in the clutch of your fist.

the night moves away from us,

we move away from us.

Typhoon Helen Consolidated Emergency Contact Information for Rescue and Relief Operations

Put this together from a Stumbleupon website and from my friend Jecel Censoro’s blog.  Feel free to share and repost for everyone’s inofrmation.

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Submit a report on E-Ugnay

Hotline – (02)922-5155
For Makati Rescue hotline: 168 / 899-8928 / 896-2828 / 895-8243

Sagip Kapamilya
Trunkline – +632-415-2272 loc 3765
Direct line – +632-411-4995
ABS-CBN Foundation Inc. Building Mother Ignacia Ave., corner Eugenio Lopez St., Quezon City

Red Cross
“If you need to be rescued, call 143 and 527-0000. Put a white blanket outside your house so rescuers can locate where you are.” (RED CROSS)

National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC)
Hotline – (02)911-1406

City of Bacoor Disaster Risk Reduction & Mgt Office
Hotline – 0464710727 or 0464171100.

Emergency numbers:
Red Cross – 143, (02)911-9875; (02)912-2665;
PNP – 117

Evacuation / Temporary Shelter:


From Mr. Rene Salvador San Andres/ADSA:
To all members of the Ateneo community:
If you need a dry and safe place where your household members could stay to wait out the rains, we have designated some classrooms for this purpose.
If your vehicles have Ateneo gate pass stickers and you wish to secure them in a safe place, you may park them at the P-1 parking area of the Ateneo Loyola campus.
Kindly notify the gate guards upon entry.

For traffic & flood updates:

MMDA Flooding control: 882-4177, 882-0925

For Relief Operations / Donations / Volunteers:

Drop-off areas for relief goods:



B1G South Ministry is fixing a “B1G Love for Flood Victims Drive”. Need the following; USABLE clothes, canned goods, rice, sugar, medicines (paracetamol, vitamins, cough meds etc.) and cash if you can. For volunteers, pls text 09189267392 or 09178866645.
For those in the Mandaluyong area who want to help: Keys Grade School and Via High School will be operating a drop off center for relief goods tomorrow.Address: 951 Luna Mencías Street corner Araullo Street, Addition Hills, Manadaluyong.Needed are ready to eat canned goods, water, blankets and rain coats. Thank you!




343 Ortigas Avenue, Mandaluyong City

Kindly drop your donations at Gate 2 along Ortigas Avenue
Volunteers and Cash Donations: Look for Marlo Castillo of the Lasallian Mission OfficeDE LA SALLE ZOBEL
University Avenue, Ayala Alabang Village, Muntinlupa City
Kindly drop your donations at Gate 7
Inquiries: Please contact Mr. Jayjay Jacinto of the Social Action Office at 09178597602WHAT TO DONATE:
Ready to eat food (does not require cooking, and preferably in easy to open cans or pouches)
Bottled Water
Usable Clothes
Canned Goods


ANGEL BRIGADE accepts relief goods
You may bring ito to Frank Provost Bldg, 120 Jupiter St., BelAir Makati. Tel: 8970383 / 8970307.




Volunteers needed to help repack relief goods.

For volunteers, pls call DSWD Nat’l Relief Operation Cent’r: 09189302356 or call 852-8081. (chapel road, near air transportation office in NAIA 2)




We are in need of volunteers for repacking of relief goods in DAR (Department of Agrarian Reform) Gate 1, Quezon City Circle.

For more information, please contact us at 0916.320.0809.

GK Command Center for relief operations for North NCR is at HRD Training Center, Department of Agrarian Reform Compound, Quezon City (take Gate 1). We are ready to accept relief goods.
Initial target is 1000 food packs. We need rice, instant noodles, canned goods, bread, coffee and sugar. 

For more details, updates, and ways to donate, please click link:
Official announcement from Associate Dean for Student Affairs of the Ateneo Rene Salvador San Andres:
To all members of the Ateneo community:
If you need a dry and safe place where your household members could stay to wait out the rains, we have designated some classrooms for this purpose. 

If your vehicles have Ateneo gate pass stickers and you wish to secure them in a safe place, you may park them at the P-1 parking area of the Ateneo Loyola campus.

Kindly notify the gate guards upon entry.



Isko Operation is now accepting donations for those who are badly affected by the weather.

Donations for relief goods can be brought or sent to USC Office, Vinzons Hall or to your respective college councils.

VOLUNTEERS will also be needed for packing and distribution.

(We will start the relief operations as soon as possible, we will keep everyone posted)

For inquiries, kindly contact your USC or college councils thru 09277571005 or 09065701029



PTV Broadcast Complex, Visayas Avenue, Diliman QC.

Hotline 09215283325



Cash donations are now accepted by SLB.


Direct deposits may be made to:

Bank of the Philippine Islands, Loyola Katipunan Branch
BPI PESO Checking Account Number 3081-1111-61
BPI Dollar Savings Account Number 3084-0420-12
ROUTING NO: 021 – 0000 – 21 or channel to:

Simbahang Lingkod ng Bayan
Loyola House of Studies
Ateneo de Manila University
Loyola Heights 1108, Quezon City


1. REGISTER (one time only)
Text REG<space>4-digit PIN/Mother’s Maiden Name/First Name/Last Name/Address and send to 2882

Example: REG<space> 1928/Sanchez/Michael/Borromeo/187 Naval St. , Novaliches, QC


To send your donations:

DONATE AMOUNT MPIN SLB or slb and send to 2882
Example: DONATE 100 1928 slb



The priests of the Diocese of Cubao have been texting asking for food and water for the evacuees in their respective parishes. Meds such as paracetamol and cough and cold medicines would also be of great help.

Diocese of Cubao:

41 Lantana Street, Cubao, 1109 Quezon City
Tel. No.: (02)723-5114, 723-4514, 723-9725, 721-6225
Fax: (02)723-5114, 723-7847
AKBAYAN RELIEF CENTER is now accepting donations for relief drive.
Kindly send/bring food items, water, blanket at Akbayan HQ
36B Madasalin St. Sikatuna Village QC
or contact us at (02) 4336933 / 09175381816 / 09064304315
for those who want to volunteer. Thank you!
Ang GMA Kapuso Foundation ay nagsasagawa ng Operation Bayanihan: Relief Operations upang damayan ang mga kasalukuyang sinasalanta ng baha at walang tigil na ulan sa Metro Manila at iba pang panig ng Luzon.Para sa mga nais magbigay ng material na donasyon gaya ng ready to eat food, bigas, pagkaing de-lata, bottled water, damit, banig, kumot, gamut, maaari itong dalhin sa tanggapan ng GMA Kapuso Foundation, 2nd Floor, Kapuso Center, GMA Network Drive cor. Samar St., Diliman, Quezon City; o kaya ay tumawag sa mga telepono bilang 9284299 at 9289351.Para sa cash donation, maaari rin po kayong mag-deposito sa numang branch ng Metrobank, UCPB at Cebuana Lhuillier. Wala pong service fee na ibabawas sa inyong donasyon patungo sa GMA Kapuso Foundation.METROBANK

Peso Savings
Account Name: GMA Kapuso Foundation, Inc.
Account Number: 3-098-51034-7Dollar Savings
Account Name:GMA Kapuso Foundation, Inc.
Account Number:2-098-00244-2
Peso Savings
Account Name: GMA Kapuso Foundation, Inc.
Account Number:115-184777-2 or 160-111277-7Dollar Savings
Account Name: GMA Kapuso Foundation, Inc.
Account Number: 01-115-301177-9 or 01-160-300427-6
Maraming salamat, mga Kapuso!
Hi everyone! The Ateneo DReaM team is now accepting donations at the Cervini Lobby in ADMU.Please donate food (canned goods, those we can cook), water, and blankets. No clothes for now please. Thank you very much!
UPSCA is calling everyone to give donations. Sa mga hindi possible na makadaan ng tambayan namin, just contact me and ako na lang kukuha ng inyong mga donations.Salamat ng marami! I hope makapagbigay kayo.Francesca Magcaleng
National and University Affairs Bureau Head
We will be collecting relief goods.drop them at Unit 3A VS1 Building #34 Kalayaan Ave. Quezon City. (Near corner V. Luna)
For those who are staying home and want to help, they can donate to Red Cross:
Text RED<space>AMOUNT to 2899 (Globe) or 4143 (Smart), or thru 7-11 and Cebuana Lhuillier.


Need the following; USABLE clothes, canned goods, rice, sugar, medicines (paracetamol, vitamins, cough meds etc.) and cash if you can.

For volunteers, pls text 09189267392 or 09178866645.


Kasalukuyan po kaming nangangalap ng TULONG at DONASYON (pagkain, pinansya, mga lumang damit, bigas, toiletries, kumot, malinis na tubig etc.) para sa relief operations sa mga nasalanta ng bagyong Gener sa Southern Tagalog.
Maaring dalhin o sadyain ang mga sumusunod na donasyon sa No.3 Reyes Apartment 681 Barangay 7, Sinagtala, Lipa City
Maaaring makipagugnayan po kay Ellaine Dimayuga sa numerong 09276365663 / 09091363607
Friends in Cebu who want to help out the flood victims in Manila, please check out this organization to coordinate pick-ups of your donations or simply volunteer to assist in their efforts:

Dasmariñas, Cavite(Repost from Ces Tirona)

For those in Cavite area, please bring your donations at
DLSUMC Bldg 1 & 3 lobbyRelief operations started last August 3,2012

(as of 11:30 AM, August 7, 2012)

343 Ortigas Avenue, Mandaluyong City
Kindly drop your donations at Gate 2 along Ortigas Avenue
Volunteers and Cash Donations: Look for Marlo Castillo of the Lasallian Mission Office
University Avenue, Ayala Alabang Village, Muntinlupa City
Kindly drop your donations at Gate 7
Inquiries: Please contact Mr. Jayjay Jacinto of the Social Action Office at 09178597602
Ready to eat food (does not require cooking, and preferably in easy to open cans or pouches)
Bottled Water
Usable Clothes
Canned Goods
The Student Council Alliance of the Philippines and its member schools will be conducting relief operations for severely affected areas such as Quezon City, Marikina City, Caloocan and Pasig.

NCR and GMA Member Schools:
Ateneo de Manila University
De La Salle University-Manila
University of the Philippines-Diliman
University of the Philippines-Manila
University of the Philippines-Los Banos
University of the East-Manila
Colegio de San Juan de Letran
San Beda College-Manila
Polytechnic University of the Philippines-College of Communications
University of Asia and the Pacific
De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde

DWSD National Relief Operations

Volunteers needed to help repack relief goods.

For volunteers, pls call DSWD Nat’l Relief Operation Cent’r: 09189302356 (chapel road, near air transportation office in NAIA 2)



GUYS. Feel free to add any information that can be useful for this event.

Jecel Censoro

For those in the Mandaluyong area who want to help: Keys Grade School and Via High School will be operating a drop off center for relief goods tomorrow.Address: 951 Luna Mencías Street corner Araullo Street, Addition Hills, Manadaluyong.Needed are ready to eat canned goods, water, blankets and rain coats. Thank you!
ANGEL BRIGADE accepts relief goods
You may bring ito to Frank Provost Bldg, 120 Jupiter St., BelAir Makati. Tel: 8970383 / 8970307.




Volunteers needed to help repack relief goods.

For volunteers, pls call DSWD Nat’l Relief Operation Cent’r: 09189302356 or call 852-8081. (chapel road, near air transportation office in NAIA 2)




We are in need of volunteers for repacking of relief goods in DAR (Department of Agrarian Reform) Gate 1, Quezon City Circle.

For more…

View original post 1,738 more words

washed over

i thought i could put myself to sleep but there you go rushing through side streets, rising from the sewers, catching the rest of the sky and taking it with you into the gaps between the doors and the walls. slowly you reach for the first flight of stairs, inching your way to the top of the fridge and the cabinets. scaring them away, pushing them towards the ceiling, higher if they could find a place to stay, to hold their weight, to keep them from you. restless you seep into every nook, every surface of the city. from the walls of the sea and the floors of the rivers, to the palms of hands that wait behind lit windows, and even cheeks hide under pillows to muffle the sounds you running across the roofs. the city is being cleansed, is it right? what else will be wiped off at the end of the night?

365 for 2012: (57 – Random**) Switch On

All the lights are bright, each corner

of my periphery is lit. there is nowhere to go, look


gaze, stare


long enough it might get a little dark

has it been that long?

             the whole time. been staring

waiting, when i catch your eyes

wandering off to this side of the room


this signal of a smile

this beckoning of a breath.


has it been that long?

the whole room, it’s bright

in here, no way out.


staring the whole time.


time to turn down the lights,

dim, a little yellow.

the way we used to,

the only thing to see.


gaze, beckon, stare. stare. stare.



*Random, meaning without much thought. But with fond, sincere memory.

Emphasis on Recurrence

One right through the target. Bang.

Matchbox Maladies

the grayness of the morning and the cool drizzle conjures in me an excruciating desire to reach for that patch of your back hidden beneath your hair and run my fingers down to trace the line of your spine and find that crevice of your waist where my palm will rest and wait for your fingers to come and converge with mine

but you do not rest under these sheets with me

i have to be the one to go to you and place myself precisely at the curve of embrace your body opens for me on your bed

inside where you are, we exist to each other like comforts we cannot let go of, in this distance we are waiting for the other to express their longing hoping that one is not rejected, hoping for another night we chase to the break of dawn

we wake up in a…

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365 for 2012: (40, 41, 42, 43) Ever Here, Ever Now

Yesterday’s minutes

Move into tomorrow’s hours.

We remain here, now.


Numbers bind our days.

But we don’t count the seconds,

We count the stories.**


Always everywhere,

Temporarily displaced.

Home is not one place.


Nothing definite,

Our once and for all, every-

time is infinite.


Wrote this one for one of the people who have helped me understand the nature of the here and the now in relation to what was there, what is, and what could be. It is all about vision and faith. And failure and strength. And good music, a good drink and good friends.

Happy birthday Tita Maribel. Always beyond age, never finite.



**"No se cuentan los segundos
Se cuentan historias"
from Calle 13's Preparame La Cena
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365 for 2012: (39) Before Sunrise

There’s no certainty.

I’m waiting with my senses.

Breathing in the dark.

There’s always something about being the one at the waiting end. Oh these things we subject ourselves to. I did write about this before.

So, after all the waiting, what do you get in the end?


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50 for the 25th: Missent

The door is shut.


A note, halfway through, distorts the spill of sunset on the floor. The message, unread, is absolutely clear. The addressed has no other response. The words remain in the dark, in-between. The meaning slips through, silently, unseen.

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March passed me by with barely any word. Literally.

It’s not a sin, really. And I’m trying very hard not to give in to self-flagellation and lecture myself in this medium because, really, I never imposed a quota for given periods of time. But I must admit it makes me feel horrible to not have published anything here. How hard is it, really?

How many more times am I gonna use the word ‘really’??? Grrr.

So, there. I’ve given in to self-flagellation, faced my regret, and allowed myself to post about not being able to post. If you’re reading this published on my page, that probably tells you a lot about how my brain is wired, yes? Yeah. Well.

Screw it. I write a lot, I just need to post more.


Marching Away (eh?)

Mantra for the present. Amen.

Today i am going to skip a dance class.


I also finally actually really finished a major task at work, will watch a long anticipated performance, and am writing here again.


Oh Absence you are so overrated. Presence deserves so much more praise. That’s why it’s Present. 🙂


Hmm. What a random ramble. What a wonderful random ramble. It rolls out so effortlessly.

Wax and Wicker


there are marks we leave that cannot be erased even by waves that come again and again

like the ink on your skin

and the softness of the soul that cannot be hidden in the chaos.

the music dies in the air and joins the rest of stillness.

it  finds refuge in ears that will listen. it remains, never leaves. 


wax and wicker, ink and skin, clouds and guitars.

rest, rock, and roll in peace, Karl Roy. 






365 for 2012: (30) A Lesson in Movement

Predictable fall.

Hit your head and it’ll end.

You need a strong grip.

**Thirty before March. Still not good enough. We have a quantity to live up to. 

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And to start off the end of the week. Face the paper, grab the pen.

The Floating Library

  1. Work on one thing at a time until finished.
  2. Start no more new books, add no more new material to “Black Spring.”
  3. Don’t be nervous. Work calmly, joyously, recklessly on whatever is in hand.
  4. Work according to Program and not according to mood. Stop at the appointed time!
  5. When you can’t create you can work.
  6. Cement a little every day, rather than add new fertilizers.
  7. Keep human! See people, go places, drink if you feel like it.
  8. Don’t be a draught-horse! Work with pleasure only.
  9. Discard the Program when you feel like it—but go back to it next day. ConcentrateNarrow downExclude.
  10. Forget the books you want to write. Think only of the book youare writing.
  11. Write first and always. Painting, music, friends, cinema, all these come afterwards.

— via listsofnote,
via sleepzandthinkz

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Look, found another jumping board. Oh these beautiful things that inspire us everyday 🙂

blue bicicletta

Some while ago, a group of ideas found their way into my sketchbook about living an adventurous and creative life. I had thought I might make these ideas into a book, but then it dawned on me that they would be fun to share here on my blog in a series of posts. There are 12 of them, and since that makes a nice even dozen this is the first in a series of posts called A Dozen Thoughts on Living. I hope you enjoy them! I hope they inspire you to be kind to yourself and live with a sense of wonder and play! Happy Creative Day to you!

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Temporal Insanity

February is still ten minutes away but I’ve already been consumed by it.