Monday, April 18, 2005

The Empty Mailbox 

Number 6 of the Canons of Chinese brush painting is to copy the masters.

6. "In copying, seek to pass on the essence of the master's brush & methods": To the Chinese, copying is considered most essential and only when the student fully learns the time honored techniques, can he branch out into areas of individual creativity

So, is this true in poetry, too. One of my favorite poets is William Carlos Williams. Truly one of the proponents of "less is more", the power of William's poems is that of his being concise. Here's one I did out of his "The Red Wheelbarrow". I entitled it The Empty Mailbox and it goes like this.

a lot of pain suffered
looking at

the chipped off black paint
of my mailbox

baked under the sun
drenched with rain

just evidence of debts, then

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Monday, April 04, 2005

Ode to Endings 

Never have I dreamt that it would stop
but even the deepest well runs dry
reams of bond paper are eventually used up
the longest journey ends with the last step.

Infinite numbers could not be counted
try hard if you must… end I know not where
but end it will, no matter what.
Who can count after a thrillion

Or even a hundred million?

Strongest despots end their rule
either by them or for them;
whether a pound of flesh
or a trickle of blood have been spared--
if the dictatorship ends
out of a gnawing conscience
it, too, shall stop.

Even God’s emissary, the Pope dies.
Everything shall cease--
just like your breaking away
from what my house can offer,
leaving behind a limitless
protection that I so willingly give.

Yes, the time has come
for you to open your wings:
feel the gale and glide to where it will take you
open your eyes wide like I told you

crossing the street is not as easy as it looks.
There are roads without stoplights
even stoplights are being ignored..
Soon, my work is finally done
there’s nothing left to do
but watch you from afar.


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Saturday, April 02, 2005

poetry exhibit 

The Writersvillage University celebrates poetry month by launching its third exhibit of poems. Once again, three of my poems had been included. Once again, I am the only Filipino in the exhibit. Not because I am good but because I am the only Filipino member in my group. haha

Anyway, you can view it here just click on the name of the poet you would wish to read.


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Friday, April 01, 2005

not today! 

not today

I have given birth
to dozens of poems T
when words flowed freely with every sigh
inspired by early morning larks
singing a symphony of dulcet notes
or a plethora of colorful images
exploding in spring
or the discovery of a rainbow
arched in the sky

I have found beauty
out of a cacophony
of thunderous firecrackers on New Year's eve
or the opening salvo of gunshots
in a peaceful night
or even the dismal sight of wrigglng worms
overflowing, creeping out
of an otherwise dainty wine glass

but why do none of these words come out today
in spite of the fiery sun
waking from a deep slumber: tiny sprout
of a mongo seed springing to life
on my daughter's flower pot

Why can’t I find solace with the pair of butterflies
swooning their passion over a freshly opened
sampaguita in her garden as they flutter around
outdoing each other to flaunt their wares
to a prospective lover

Alas! I couldn't weave big words
into a beautiful pattern of an expensive rug.
Not today when I feel contented,
neither feeling ecstatically happy
nor desperately sad

Ahh! Perhaps that is the life of a bard
Who can only write because of extreme emotions
Either when joy overflows or on an empty stomach
only when angels sing triumphant songs
to applaud accomplishments
when carrying the burdens of a tragic existence

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