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Sunday, August 17, 2003

mINSAN SA iSANG uMAGA

mA-DRAMA AND pAMaGat NO?
wARI BA'Y SA tELENOVELA
uNG kALA MO ME BABAEnG aPI
pAGTAPOS AY UmAHON AT
nAGING mARANGYA ANG BuHAY
hABANG ANG MGA NAnG-aBUSO SA kANyA'Y nAGSISi.

tIPIKAL NA dALOY nG iSANG KWENTO
pERO DI NAMAN YUN pARA SA GMA O ABS-CBN E
pARA SAKIN NA mEDYO NAHIMAS MASAN SA pAGgISING.
pANO bA NmAN, DI AKO YUNG tIPONG
mAGNGANGANGAWA hABANG nAWAWALAY SA pAMILYA,
pERO kANINA rAMDAM KO ANG sIMOY NG LegASPI.

pAGMALAYO kasi kO SAMIN,
kAHIT pA BA nALULUNgKOT DIN
mE SADYANG sIgLA SA kALOOBAN kO
hAMON SA sARILI aNG pAGKAKAWaLAy
dAHIL mATUTuTo aKO SA bUHAY nA dI nAKAAsa
sA pAG-aKAY NG mAGULANG KONG bUTIHIN.

mATAGAL nA dI kO HINANAP ANG LAMBOT NG kAMA KO
aNG kWARtO NA SARILInG aKIN
aNG hAMOG NA PUMAPASOK SA BINTANA TUWING
aLAS-sINGO NG uMAGA HANGGAng SA PAGSAPIT NG
bUKANG-LiWAYwAY.dI KO aLINTANA
ANG pAGDAAN NG tAON DITO SA mAYNILA.

sUBALIT kANINA, pARA BANG bUMALIK AKO sAMIN
aNG sARAP NG pAKIRAMDAM NG NAGHALONG
iNIT NG kWARTO AT LaMIG NG hANGIN sA eLECTRIKpAN
nA dUMADAMPI SAKING kATAWAN
bAGO PA mAN SUMIKAT NG mATINDI aNG aRAW.
sA LeGASPI kO LNG kASI RAMDAM AND gANUN
sA MAHABANG pAGTIRA KO DITO
.

sIGURO'y NAGKATAON LAMANG aNG LahAT
pERO aNG pANGYAYARING iTO'Y
nAGbALIK SAKIN nG MGA ALALA
wARI'Y DINALA AKO PANANDALI SA bAHAY NAMIN
MATAGAL nA NGA pALA KONG NAG-iISA't mALAYO.
aNG gAAN nG gISING kO kanIna
nAKAKAMIS ANG bALON Sa Tabi NG HarDin

aNG pANGGIGISING NI mAMA AT ANG PAGPUPUNA NI PAPA
sA ADOPTED NAMING mAKUKULIT,
aNG INGAY NG PAMILYA TUWING KUMAKAIN
NA DI NAMAN NGKAKASABAY SABAY,
aNG PagtaHol ni Bruno,
aNG PAGTAAS KO SA tUKtOk NG bAHAY tUWING GABI
BAGO mATULOG PARA TINGNAN ANG MGA tALA

aT KAUSApIN ANG bUWAN HABANG
uMAASANG ANG AKING mAHAL AY NAKATItig rIN.
nAKAkAMIS dIN pALA nA tUMAYO DUN
hABANG ANG gABI'Y LUMALALIM AT
ANG hANGI'Y DUMADAMPI
pARA LaMANG tUMINGALA
AT hANAPIN ANG DIOS SA KALAWAKAN,

hABANG NANAnALANGIN nA SANA'y
ANG bUTIHING HANGI'Y DALHIN SA KANYA
LAHAT NG PAGTANGIS Na KINIKIMKIM
O ANG SIKRETONG GALAK NA NADARAMA.
kUNG SNA'Y kAYA KONG BIGKISIN
ANg pAGMAMAHAL KO SA SARILING kALAYAAN
aT ANG kATIWASAYAN NG bUHAY kAPILING Nila.

wALA LNG,nAIS KO LaMANG NA aLALAhANIN
ANG ARAW NA ITO nA mAAArING mATAGAL kO nG mULING
mALALANGhAP aNG sIMOY nG LeGASPI
hABANG AKO'Y nARIRITO'T nAGiISA.
nAAALaLA KO TULOY aNG tUKTOK NG
mAYON vOLCANO nA MATATANAW SA tAAS NG kWARTO KO,

aNG bAWAT hAPON koNG pAGSIMBA
PAGKAGALING SA eSKUWELA nUON,
AND PAGDAAN KO SA KAPILYA PAG BUGBOG NA
ANG DAMDAMIN SA SAMA NG LOOB,
dUN LAMANG AKO NAKAKAKUHA NG TUNAY NA NAKIKINIG.
sAYANG, KASI RAMDAM KO NA MATATAGALAN PA
BAGO KO UMUWI.

mARAMI PANG BAGAY ANG NAIS KONG
MAISAKATUPARAN DITO SA mETRO...
MGA BAGAY NA DI KO ALAM KUNG TAMA BANG
IPAGPALIT ANG SIGLA NA NAROON SA MAY SAMIN.

Thursday, August 14, 2003

Only in Silence

"...only in silence shall I speak of a hundred I LOVE YOUs." Ben then sealed the letter in a blue envelop and tied a white ribbon on it. He placed it lovingly inside a box worn by time... only to stay there, apparently to join other unmailed notes.

He was 20 when he saw her face, smiling back from afar. She wore a beige dress that day, he could vividly remember. The car suddenly stopped at the palayan just for her family to see the farmers harvest before they go for a week vacation in Thailand. Pamela or Pam as they call her just turned 18 and Don Feliciano wanted her to celebrate debut with friends wherever she choses. The Vergara's a prominent family in Sta Cruz, Bukidnon, who practically owns 45 hectares of land. They were good as far as management was concerned and the people were satisfied with the treatment they receive. Although owner-worker relationship is clear and the natural arrogance of the rich remains evident. Perhaps, Ben was referring more on Henrico, Pam's only sibling, who often would command respect and whom the townspeople have less regard compared to the younger sister. Perhaps Ben saw the loveliness of her heart as soon as he had a glimpse of her.

She walked out of the car that early morning and waved to the little girls playing along the road while their parents pluck out the goods. She paid respect to 60-year old Mang Karyo who was passing by trying his luck to the next town to sell vegetables grown in his small backyard. One of the girls, Ben's sister, called out " Kuya Ben, look, I'm with ate Pam!" Kikay had always looked up to Pam with admiration and sadly, wanted to be like her when she grows up -- a grand dream for a simple farm girl.

Ben lived with his grandparents, Kikay and Nico at a well-furnished house in a nearby village. They were middle class but far fortunate from the other farmers. His parents had since worked for the Vergara, enabling him to finish college. He never went to the fields to work while his parents lived, but tried to help out after his father died. His mother eventually followed because of too much loneliness that even the children perhaps could not fill-in the absence of the man she loved so well.

Love? It could be love, or less than it, that made him write letters since that day, but it was surely something that grew in time. It may be the very reason why he would wake up in the stillness of the night, why wild daises across the street were a magnificent sight to Ben, why his heart found new meaning in the simplest of things just by thoughts of her. Perhaps it was love, like diamonds naturally appraising itself as time grows old. It could be... Or not.

One day, during those youthful years, Ben summoned his courage to see her, close enough to validate the beauty he only admires from a distance. To him, she was a pearl in the deepest ocean which a diver would risk to search the unpathomable just to have a glance of "heaven" beneath. So many sighs have been drawn... some private tears already fell... so many grand dreams of her have been printed in his mind... but the reality of being with Pam has yet to come. It must come even if means the first and last, even it would earn him the deepest scar of unrequited love. Pam, he mused to himself, would look at his direction with more than just an interesting glance. His hands would go cold while a feeling of warmth engulfs him everytime he would feel they had a connection. Perhaps it was an exaggeration, and the confirmation would only come when she says it so. He went to her one day while she stood infront of the garden in the mansion.

"You look sad."

"I am. But just as other emotions, it will pass. Joy and sorrow are juxtaposed. The harder you bleed, the greater perhaps your capacity for happiness. It works to me, at least."

"Ah, talking about wisdom being so young! Yet I wonder, a life like yours, could there be any reason to bleed so hard as you say?"

"Everyone has his capacity for pain. It may be that the gravest that could prick me, is the least to you. These luxuries, while I feel so blessed, I have not earned at all. Nothing in here I own, which makes me less than anyone of you. I could'nt find myself so happy because someting stirs inside that wants to prove itself."

"It is odd that plain girls desire to be where you are and you... you wish to be like them."

We smiled and talked for hours -- like good old friends. I could have remained a friend had I chosen to, but my heart should not be betrayed. The least dignity I can give to myself is to stand for something real, even if the reality of being with her would not amount to lifetime...

But the silence remained. No one dared to break it after two summers have passed. He remained the coward he knew he was from the very start, while she kept her defenses firm although they might have felt the need to bridge the gaps. Perhaps it was not time for heroism. Maybe he did'nt love her enough to feel it was worth a damn try. Or he was just so deep into her that he was afraid for love to stare back at him --- blankly.

Separation was inevitably painful especially when nothing was ever concretized. Many "WHAT IFs?" have lingered four years after she made that one last look. So many things left unsaid which he could've uttered the very same words said in silence a thousand times... a move that could have marked their past and made him take the painful but liberating step into the possibility of new romance.

Tonight, Ben -- having been successful in his career, happy though with occasional sadness upon the thought of her -- folded another of his letters and wrote:

"To my beloved, only in silence shall I speak of a hundred more I LOVE YOUs"
But I know you hear them just the same... in my heart you are kept safe, deeply locked where the memories are..."


He shed a tear, hopefully the last for Pam, and gave one deep sigh...
Then he switched down the light of the room and held Melanie's hand. She looked at him with loving eyes and embraced him tightly...

Before he could say a word, she said:

"Daddy, can you tell me the story of how you and mom met again?"

I was at the airport for a business conference in Toronto when I bumped on her. I could hear her faint hello and see the surprise on her face. My world stood still for the unexpected gift I never knew could ever come again. She moved away, shyly. For a moment, the words I knew I had to free were screaming inside my head, but my mouth went numb. I was seeing my dream vanish for the second time because I am a fool! I almost lost her in the crowd of strangers. Until I reached her hand and said" I will not have that one last look from you again, Pam. If this moment is all I have with you, just one chance to say the very words you ought to know, then I would not bargain for anything more... even if this moment with you is nothing compared to a lifetime. " I love you just the same..."

"She broke into tears my little angel Melanie and we embraced. The rest is history."

Ben went to his room and looked at the picture of his wife. He knew that now he would only whisper to her and she would hear... He, not knowing when his mortal life would end, is assured that Pam is just waiting right across to meet him...







Monday, August 11, 2003

On Loneliness

I have known loneliness in the midst of a crowd of strangers and friends alike. It creeps in even when am with the person I hold most important... It stamped some olden memories, and much more, finds its way befriending some hopeful dreams I have. For a time, it has been my sole companion (even when am with the person who loves me most and the One who promised eternity.) Loneliness, what is in you that you scrap my world of brightened days? Are you friend or foe? Are you a gift or a curse? Are you with child of wisdom or my destruction it is that you seek?

There is loneliness among men... and certainly in the most composed of souls... Why is hapiness so elusive? or has my heart become incapable of sowing its own joys. Is happiness a grace... a state of mind... an idealism or reality? Are my perspectives wrong or my heart just numbed. While I know that life cannot be all roses and thorns are necessary to further give meaning to beauty, why does life bring more rain than the warmth of the sun...

While my hopes hang on the highest ideals and believe that the world abounds with reasons enough for all events to be explained, why can't I have the simplest desire for a peaceful heart? Isn't it in peace that people find consolation after seeing the tumultous disparities in the world, the dreams that never came to be... Yes, It is in peace that somehow the heart can remain content despite the scars? But I'm all wounds and the injuries go deeper. Why does man have to suffer without the corresponding gift to survive? Loneliness, have you come to bring me closer to my faith or to my doom? What do you have for me that may prune me... or have you a dagger for my soul...

...My existence is filled with bitter-sweet memories. I wasn't totally deprived of joy. But joy as I have known it, rarely touches me... Or loneliness has just severely overwhelmed me lately. O, what should I do with this troubled heart... with the weight that's on my back... with the feeling of guilt and emptiness...with the lack of valor. What should I do with the tears that I keep witholding... Everyday I keep on wondering when will the emptiness be filled and the gaps closed.

Loneliness is a blank look in the face... a sad hello.. a grief behind the smile... a pretended bravado in the eyes ... It is the sting in my bossom... an eclipse hiding much of my desires... Perhaps it is a grace and too a villain. For how long will I keep the heavy block... for how long will the pain remain...when can I see the smile from the heavens and the glow of the sun upon my face...For how long will this journey be with my aching sorrow inside of me. Loneliness is the only reality I know at this trying times. It's just another necessary hardship.


Sunday, August 10, 2003

Tabi Tabi Po

para sa mahihilig mangutya
sana mabulunan kayo ng todo;
para sa mapang-api
sana'y bagabagin kayo ng nyong konsensya;
para sa mga natatapakan
matuto ng tumayo!;
para sa mga pabagal bagal
isipin na ang buhay ay maikli;
para sa mga mga presko
tingin nga kayo ulit sa salamin!?!;
para sa magaganda
magpasalamat na lang..
at sa mga di gaanong blessed
isipin na angat kayo sa maganda na swanget naman kalooban no!

para sa matatalino
wag namang ipaghiyawan! (nakakarindi);
para sa mahina naman
ibayong pagsasanay lalaon diy makakahabol;
at dyan sa mga papapel...
pwede ba mag-ayos ka!
o sa mga sobrang pa-cute
makonteto na nga sa sarili;
sa mga simple
ayos! ipagpatuloy niyo.

sa mapagmataas
matisod sana (sori po!)
sa mga kulang sa height
oks lang (basta sapat ang pagtingin sa sarili);
para sa Hotbabes (spesyal mensyon)
tama na ngang magjustify for Arts sake;
para sa nakatatanda
maging maayos na halimbawa;
sa mga bata pa
wag madaliing matutunan lahat sa buhay;

(hingal) para sa ating lahat na may pangarap
kayaning abutin kahit papano;
sa ting mataas pa ang idealismo
bagayan natin ng realismo;
sa meron pang panindigan
matutong tumayo sa tama;
sa nalihis ng landas
nawa'y may umakay pabalik;
para sa mahilig manalangin
ipanalangin mo rin ako ha;
para sa mga powet, wrayter
sana'y wag nyo kong husgahan
PLEEAASSE!
(ayan, para ng para,
tuloy nakalimutan kong pumara sa kanto.
lesson: bawal and magmuni-muni sa loob ng jeep.)


On Restlessness

Of what is life when all its meaning's lost...
when one has wandered aimlessly ahead
and looking back makes the heart aches most.

Of what is love when one has loved so true
yet trust has been betrayed
and the heart is filled with endless rue.

Of what is to love when the beloved is unaware...
when affections never found expression
and one has never came to dare.

Of what is to stand for the truth...
When every man has his own truths
and MR Virtues and Values now are mute.

Of what is giving when the pocket is overflowing...
When the giver never felt the sacrifice of the act
and the ungrateful receiver see the gift unsatisfying.

Of what is there in victory...
when winning has failed to content the heart
and the mind still seeks true magnanimity.

Of what is the essence of defeat...
when the grace to survive is gone
and the man loses his gift of discernment.

Of what does a prayer do
to the one prayed for and to the soul praying...
when every lift of anguish seems to be unheard
Pray, tell me, I have'nt the slightest clue.

Ah. this restlessness I cannot hide
My heart and soul have grown out tired
I find no peace nor consolation
With all the world's distortions.









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