The Illusion of Light

Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,

I haven’t written in a long time, and last night, while looking up at the moon, this poem suddenly came knocking at the door. I decided to sit down and have coffee with her. She told me of people who shine so brilliantly on the outside, seeming to live fantastic and expensive lives, when in reality, there is nothing within them but darkness and brokenness.

“But, they have lived with these lies for such a long time, you see, blinded by the false light they emit, that they themselves do not know who they are and what is real anymore.” The poem explained to me patiently while pointing out the loneliness of existence for the people she was talking about. “Learn to look past their expensive clothes, their Instagram posts, and their projected lifestyles. Remember, one of your famous poets once said, All that glitters is not gold. Look past the brilliance of their smiles. There is nothing beyond, but hollow spirits stumbling around in the darkness. They are dying in their loneliness.”

“How sad.” I said. “Is there nothing that could be done for them?”

“Only a light infinitely brighter than theirs, that is true, steadfast, and beyond mortal strength could save them.” She quietly said as we both gazed up at the heavens. After a period of shared silence, she turned to me and asked, “Now, are you willing to write this truth?”

I smiled and replied, “Must you still ask? I obey.” And so, last night, the poem and her wisdom flowed from the tip of my pen and were set free into reality.

Refracted Light

The moon looks like a broken nail
Tonight it scratches across the sky
Shredding up clouds in its wake
As if saying to the world below
Hey, look at me
I am here, I am important
But the people slept
Cuddled in one another’s arms.

How sad to be the moon
Alone in its brilliance
And as the day turns
Its solitary light diminishes
Among a family of stars.

Advertisements

He Never Fails 😊

Tags

, , , , ,

To God be the glory !!! 😊 Three of my works – “Kindred Spirits”, “Jose’s Beating Heart, and “Rewinding Time on a Broken String” — were published in the book, “21st Century Literature from the Philippines and the World”. I am so happy, and I know I have God to thank for this blessing 😊❤️😊

An Evening with “The Lion King”

Tags

, , , , , ,

We weren’t allowed to take photos inside the theater, and so I cannot visually share with you the wonders of Simba’s world. Let me assure you, however, it is definitely worth watching. The elements of the theater combined majestically in this show — lights, sounds, music, acting, props, costume, backdrops, colors (oh my goodness, such delicious eye-popping colors), and puppetry skills — they were all skillfully used to bring Simba’s story to life.

Anyway, some of my favorite scenes in the play are the following:

1) The stampede and the death of Mufasa. The actors’ movements choreographed beautifully with the puppets, and the added audio-visual accompaniment really made me feel the danger and urgency of that moment. That “cascading” effect, well that scene definitely looked like a waterfall that’s gushing down towards the audience, brought to life the tension and the chaos that were unfolding within the story.

2) The show’s opening act. I was definitely awestruck with the dancers in their colorful and stunning costumes powerfully singing and gracefully dancing their way down the aisles toward the main stage — it was just such a “Wow!” moment for me.

3) The use of some Filipino words in the play. I loved the way they injected Filipino words in their dialogues, like “mabuhay” (the rough English translation, I think would be, “long live” or “have a long life”) , “baboy” (pig), and “salamat” (thank you). It was a touching nod of appreciation on their end to my country, and I found it to be a heartwarming gesture.

Anyway, I might be giving too much away, so I’ll shut up now. There’s one thing I won’t shut up about though, and it’s the fact that, “The Lion King” is one of the best musical I’ve ever watched.

Allow me to end this piece, by sharing with you the three things I learned from “The Lion King” : 1) We all have past hurts, but we have to accept and face them in order to move on; 2) the hakuna matata (no worries) philosophy can help you survive only for a brief moment in time before life catches up with you and reminds you of the reality you have to face; and 3) we are all part of the circle of life. We live and die, and at the end of it all, we have to ask ourselves these questions – What are the things worth fighting for? What is the right thing to do? How do I want to die? What is worth dying for? #thelionking #solaire #life #musings

Love Letters to Myself

Tags

, , , , ,

Gaetia, a former student, who is now a good friend, gave me this poem. She always had the gift of weaving words together and forming a beautiful tapestry out of them. I am proud of her.

Thank you for this gift, Gaetia. Bless your beautiful soul.

May her words touch your hearts too ❤️

Love Letters to Myself

i.

Courage, precious heart

You are not who you are

On the nights you are loneliest

And the songs that you play

Endlessly, on infinite loop

Do not mean that you are

Trapped here for all of time

Only that you find beauty

In the impermanence of things

And in the fickleness of feelings

That either burst from inside you

Like the mightiest of floods

Or politely knock thrice

Before opening your door

ii.

Remember where you came from

Born from fire and flame

Yet your heart is a well at which

So many find their rest

Look to the roses that grow tall

Around your feet, reaching up

As if to kiss you

Your divinity is yours alone,

Goddess of all the ages,

And if some mortal man decides

To steal the sun away from you

Do not forget that your heart

Shines brighter than any star

iii.

You are loveliness personified

The tear stains on your cheeks

Are just roads that take you

To places your heart can heal

Do not be ashamed of your pain

Do not apologize for your love

You owe no one explanations

For the infinities you keep within you

And anyone incapable

Of fathoming the beauty

That is so deeply, wholly,

Truthfully yours

Deserves no part of you

No portion of your magnificence

No fragment of the blessing

Of what it is to know you

Never believe that you are anything less

Than worthy of love

Because love is who you are

Above all things.

Thankful Again

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

The Minds Journal, an international online journal, featured my poem, “In the Name of the Mother”. Sharing the link here: https://themindsjournal.com/in-the-name-of-the-mother/

I am deeply honored. To God be the glory.

Art Fair Philippines 2018

Tags

, , ,

I had loads of fun at the Art Fair Philippines yesterday. My gorgeous friend, JP, dragged me there, and I sure am glad I went with him. We were like kids in a candy store and we were just all over the place. There were so many things to see, and such lovely, meaningful, breathtaking paintings and sculptures.

The place was really crowded, and it was great to see people of all ages admiring the art pieces. What’s so cool is that, you could actually get your picture taken beside the artwork you really like, as long as you don’t go beyond the allotted distance. Oh, speaking of pictures, I’d like to share some of mine with you guys 😊

Of course, the perfect way to end an equally perfect day was to have a Margarita with a good friend, and then sing your heart out 😘❤️🎶💋

The Banishment

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

I am haunted by a ghost.
She sits by my side.
Whispers at my ear, all day
and I have to listen to what she says.
I carry her on my back,
side-splitting heaviness giving way to madness.
And she smiles at me, knowing
that I will never get rid of her.
And I will helplessly end up seeing
how she gives flesh to my heartbreaking fears.

She tortures me with her words,
a knife brutally stabbing me,
by smiling and recounting
how he smiled at her
whispered “I love you” to her ear.
How he moaned when they made love.
How he grabbed her breasts
and squeezed her hips as he plunged
roughly, sometimes tenderly into her.
She will laugh and slash out,
letting me know,
how he took her out on dates
drank wine and laughed at her jokes.
How afterwards they would share a kiss
as his eyes gazed at her tenderly
and his hands softly, ever so softly,
touched her face under the light of the moon.
She will purr softly to my ears,
as she cuts me deeply,
and tell me how his cigarette smells on her skin
and how she would dress up prettily for him,
as he says how beautiful she is
and how lucky he is to be with her.

Then, she will pull out the knife from my flesh,
hand it to me and say,
So, now you know. Come, sit, and think.
Do you think he loves you or me?
And blood bleeds from every word she speaks
and my flesh is torn apart at the seams.
Come, she says, do you think he’ll forget?
And my heart drops to the floor
numb, bloody, barely beating
as she picks it up and toss it around
like a toy that has no purpose or meaning.
Really now? She says, do you think
you could ever get rid of me?
When I am all that you would ever feel and see.
Here, she says, take the knife.
Use it on yourself, end the pain, and be free.

And so I stand up.
What did the poem say? Bloody, but unbowed.
Yes, I tell her, you are all that.
Beautiful, sexy, and meaty.
But I too can be equally feisty.
I took the knife from her hands.
Tell me, I slashed out at her,
Were you there during the difficult times?
When we were barely living on a dime
When he was nothing and no one
When he had no money in his pockets
No title on his head
No flashy car to go around in.
Would you have looked at him twice then?
I stabbed at her and said,
Would you have survived the days we had nothing to eat?
Only canned fish and vegetables, each day,
each passing arduous day.
Then go to work with holes in our shoes,
And yet smiling at each other,
drawing strength from the love in his eyes
that would somehow, I know, see me through.
I plunged the knife through her chest, and whispered,
Have you seen him at his darkest?
When he would breakdown and cry
and snap and shout,
when things didn’t work out.
Have you seen him go silent in one of his moods?
Yet I would embrace him, and accept his totality.
Without question, take in his reality.
I looked at her in the eyes and asked,
Are you the mother of his child?
Did he ever tell you that,
You are his life and his meaning?
That all he ever wants was to keep you happy and smiling?
She answered, softly and weakly, “No”.
I rose up to walk away, and I told her,
“Begone!!!”
You can have him. You can go.
You have nothing I need.
Nothing I fear.
For I know,
at the end of it all,
I am everything. I am enough.
And it may take time, but I will rise again.
Made stronger, wiser, and better by this pain.

IMG_6216

New Beginnings (A Renewal for the New Year)

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

img_4555

Perhaps we missed this
the simple bliss
of sitting down and talking
about life, about our meaning
to each other, the process of being
together. The stirring of coffee,
this solution, dissolving becoming one
creating something beautiful, strong, and new
out of something separated and undone.
Yes, perhaps we needed to remember
why we chose to pursue this path of forever.
And in partaking of this bread with you
under the fullness of the sun
may it affirm why we chose to remain one.

In the Name of the Mother

Tags

, , , , , , , ,

I reclaim my mother’s name.
Syllable by syllable.
Letter by letter.
I reach out and lay hold of it.

This name was forged upon
the blood of women.
Generations upon generations
who stood on their own
withstood the fear of being alone
fought for their ground
for their right to speak and be heard
to own their soul and their words
to be wounded and stay alive
to bleed and yet choose to survive.
Yes, this woman, this name
forged in their blood
I claim with no shame.

And across no man’s land
I join my fate with them.
Now, I understand.

Hear me roar!

As I dig myself out of the pit,
you buried me in
to hide away your sins.

You fed sand into my mouth,
so I can speak only what you wish to hear.
Poured sand into my eyes,
so I will be blind to your affairs.
Shoveled sand unto my skin,
So I will be numb to my own despair.

But I say enough!
And now I rise.
Now, I stand.
In defiance against the burning sand
of this barren, unforgiving land.

Now, I speak
with the strength of women who bore me.
I refuse to fall victim, enough with your lies.
Now, I see
the truth with their eyes and enter the light.
I reject your snares and turn away from the night.
Now, I feel
the beautiful intricacies of my thoughts and feelings.
I welcome my broken self and the peace that it brings.

I am the daughter of women.
I am a child of their womb.
And with their help, I will not succumb.
I will pick up the broken pieces.
Sit down with them.
Listen to their voices across the age.
As I weave my story with theirs
within this circle
within this sacred space
of affirmed existence
I am finally reborn
to guiltlessly celebrate
my true essence.

Breathe to Be Free (A Reprise)

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

Inhale.
Exhale.
One day at a time.
It will be fine.

The world spins.
The sun sets and the moon rises.
Night turns into day.
The city sleeps and awakens
and this heart that was once forsaken
will surely beat again, scarred but recovered.
Ready for life, ready to live, and rediscover.
I know, I’ll wake up one morning
smiling while thinking
that life courses along
even down avenues of former longings
where my old love is walking by.
And I will be happy,
that he is out there
laughing and smiling without a care,
that he is well and good.
And that in all likelihood
on that day, I too, will be doing well.
And I’ll turn my back and say farewell
to him and his memories.
I’ll probably remember our story,
but I’ll take a deep breath and exhale
for it will be okay, I have prevailed.

All is well ….
Now, I just need to breathe and cope.
And hold on to that vision of hope,
that on that beautiful morning
the sun will be gloriously shining.
Life in the city will be moving.
The day will be flowing.
My heart will be beating.
And I definitely, so definitely,
on that day
will hear myself singing.

IMG_3056