Category Archives: Mga Tula / Poetry

Day of Rage and a previously posted poem, “Rent a Horror Movie”

After seeing Jon Snow’s “Unseen Gaza,” many years ago, I wrote a poem called “Rent a Horror Movie.” It is full of rage, but one that is like a fist in the dark. HERE IS THE LINK TO THE POEM.

-o-

The following is taken from the BDS Movement.

Gaza Calling: All out on Saturday 9 August Day of Rage

Join the Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions Movement today. Demand Sanctions on Israel Now.

As we face the full might of Israel’s military arsenal, funded and supplied by the United States and European Union, we call on civil society and people of conscience throughout the world to pressure governments to sanction Israel and implement a comprehensive arms embargo immediately.

Take to the streets on Saturday 9 August with a united demand for sanctions on Israel.

From Gaza under invasion, bombardment, and continuing siege, the horror is beyond words.  Medical supplies are exhausted. The death toll has reached 1813 killed (398 children, 207 women, 74 elderly) and 9370 injured (2744 children, 1750 women, 343 elderly). Our hospitals, ambulances, and medical staff are all under attack while on duty. Doctors and paramedics are being killed while evacuating the dead. Our dead are not numbers and statistics to be recounted; they are loved ones, family and friends.

While we have to survive this onslaught, you certainly have the power to help end it the same way you helped overcome Apartheid and other crimes against humanity. Israel is only able to carry out this attack with the unwavering support of governments – this support must end.

This is our third massacre in six years. When not being slaughtered, we remain under siege, an illegal collective punishment of the entire population. Fishermen are shot and killed if they stray beyond a 3 km limit imposed unilaterally by Israel. Farmers are shot harvesting their crops within a border area imposed unilaterally by Israel.  Gaza has become the largest open-air prison, a concentration camp since 2006. This time, we want an end to this unprecedented crime against humanity committed with the complicity and support of your own governments!

We are not asking for charity. We are demanding solidarity, because we know that until Israel is isolated and sanctioned, these horrors will be repeated.

– See more at: http://www.bdsmovement.net/2014/gaza-calling-all-out-on-saturday-9-august-day-of-rage-12423#sthash.NW8glK7y.dpuf


Three poems from Sound Before Water featured in Dead Snakes

Cluster bombs being dropped on Gaza by Israel (image from Wikipedia)

Three poems from Sound Before Water have been posted on Dead Snakes. Please click THIS LINK to read them. Posting a comment (or three) will help encourage the editors to keep up their good work.
Thank you, Stephen, for making room for my work.


Maybe, just maybe

Three Views of an Israeli Checkpoint and a Missing Mother

1
Who chose your womb before you were born?
Was your name known
to the speck of dust that first entered your eye?

Are you the only one
who sweats in the harsh burning
of this sun as it turns in silence?

Why does the next moment lie
on your finger that senses fear?
It is only a child you face,
why do you warm the trigger?

2
You are in full military gear.
He is wrapped in a blue blanket, serene.

The barrel of your gun is close to his feet.
His grandfather holds him steady, to keep his sleep.

The next moment is measured in increments
of fear, that distance closing in.

3
Old man, it is not time alone
that has struck
your hair this white.

Your hands know the depth of olive roots,
the countless times they can be pulled
out of the ground by those
who wish to see them twist in the sun.

Those hands
hold more
than your daughter’s child.

-o-

“Operation Cast Lead” is not the Title of a Movie

After a night of gasping
at fireworks
I nurse the consequences
of champagne.

Somewhere else they are remembering
smoke that takes forever
to clear, the ringing in the ears,
the smell of burnt flesh
among personal belongings.

-o-

The Dog and Its Master

With a firm wave of the master’s hand
the dog sets off, sharp as a dagger,
its nose cuts the wind.

Over and over, this lesson is taught.
The dog quickly learns
whom it must seek, sending hairs on end.

They conduct this concert of violence
with such precision, in the end, with the slightest
twitch of the master’s brow, the dog
flies swifter than a bullet, finishing off a prey.

Israel, which are you?

-o-

 

I’m not sure if I’ve posted these here before. But I feel I need to share them right now. I don’t often post comments to articles I read online. This time I had to. The article can be found HERE.

A dilemma for the party responsible for mass slaughter of a people in an open air prison?
Through the years various war crimes (as documented by the UN and other international bodies) were committed repeatedly by Israel and not a single Israeli official or Israeli have ever been tried. Now we are seeing worse atrocities for they know they can get away with it again.
It takes a certain imagination to accept a twisted view of history. Israel is an occupying power and Palestinians are under one of the thickest military boots in the world.
The oppressed has become the oppressor and, in full battle gear, continues to call himself the victim. And the people who are desperately trying to defend themselves are branded militants and terrorists. Having a starched uniform and being armed to the teeth (paid for in billions of US dollars a year) as well as having extensive control of dominant media are apparently the way to keep oneself from being called a terrorist state. For it seems terror-spreading weapons manufactured with quality control (to ensure precise kills and widespread destructive powers) make all the difference.
Yes, there are Israelis who oppose the Zionist madness, and they need to shout out louder against this atrocity to prove to the world that this is not how they wish to be seen by the the rest of humanity.
Meanwhile, the number of people worldwide who are waking up despite the dominant media’s relentless support of Israel continues to rise. They take to the streets or spread the truth through various means.
One last thing. Apparently there is a vast wealth sitting in Gaza. Is it all about greed then?
-o-

 


Launch Notice: In the Heat of Shadows

In the Heat of Shadows

 

Click this LINK for full details of the launch notice

invitation to cape town


Two poems in Poppy Road Review and another good news

modified poppy road detailEarly versions of two poems were accepted and published on Poppy Road Review on 10 May 2014. Around the same time one of the manuscripts I put together was accepted for publication. Both poems will be in the new book hopefully to be released in 2015 by my faithful publisher, University of Santo Tomas Publishing House. I said “early versions” because I have since revised the poems and the final versions will be in A THOUSAND EYES.

Thank you to all my readers.

 


New poem almost popular

The task of writing may seem to end when you lift your pen off the page or stop touching the keyboard/glass surface (or whatever gadget you may use, stick and sand?). But until it’s read – and hopefully received – in a positive or negative way, it hasn’t finished its journey.

A poem I recently wrote, “Falling in Reverse,” was noticed by the judges of an online poetry competition. I hope you consider voting for it after reading up all the finalists’ entries. Thank you.

GOODREADS POETRY FINALISTS FOR MAY NEWSLETTER

 


Versions Old, Revised,…Final?

moth wings blurred up

 

In January 2011 my two books were born: Baha-bahagdang Karupukan and Alien to Any Skin. I was elated to have those two books published (both by UST Publishing House) for it had been a long gap since the last collection (Salimbayan, 1994). Soon after I wrote the first draft of the following poem. This one eventually joined a new set of poems that would become Sound Before Water (UST Publishing House, 2013), a much slimmer volume than the previous two which contain poetry from over 15 years. In a forthcoming review of this new collection this poem gets mentioned for the oddity of its title. I am posting this version – the one that is now in the book, as if being in book form makes it final! – perhaps as an invitation to adopt my paper children and make room for them in a new home.

It pains me not to be in the same country where these paper children are born. All I can do from where I am is tell as many people online how much I wish and hope the best for them. I will post a link to the review once it is available. For now, I share this with you.

 

How to Sell a Child Door to Door
for Karu and Skin, my paper children

tell them this child has no parent
and can only bring joy
to its new home
bring light and promise
into the room
as it silently sits
in their hands

even as the world burns
outside the window

tell them everything
they want to hear
that might make them smile

anything just to get
this child’s little foot
in the door

do not bat an eyelid
should the child
gasp at fragments
of moth wings
by the kettle

no one invites sorrow
into their lives

-o-


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