Poetry

route

From north to south, I ride the lines
chasing the horizon
you’d think the trains move fast enough
but this is the only rocket I know

I feel the depths of every street crossed
each neighbourhood telling their story
a longevity reaching far before I have touched these grounds
you can hear the dust from years past whisper in the winds
There is more history that I will never know
and have yet to know

The streetlights flicker,
a sign for me to keep my eyes open
I remember to look up this time –
high rises looking down at me
apartment buildings glaring at me
foliage inviting me
This is all a subtle reminder of how we all make up this city

I continue to coast the lines as the breadth broadens wider than the edges of the Bluffs
eyes wide open, I feel the air around me sigh
a formal welcoming to whoever dares to pass each borderline

I am finally home

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Poetry

t-eye-dal wave

Staring out at the stars
their eyes glisten back at me
reassurance of being guided
the right path leading me silent
a journey diving into my mind
I never realized my full potential

A climb of my mental staircase
I stared blankly into the doorway of my past
they whispered flashes of memories back at me
a humble reminder of where I come from
my feet have now been washed
a new set of toes will carry me home
eventually

Bright lights in the sky
a common sign
guiding those lost
especially those that have forgotten
either or
something is always missing
always searching for the next high
these altitudes have been played out
my senses need to heighten
I promise I won’t get lost in the clouds
Instead, I’ll carry them home with me
eventually

This energy seeps
spitting droplets of hope
replenishing rough grounds
I am comfortable
feet firmly planted
I have grown roots in my time here
leaving an imprint in the soil
a full cycle
multiplying its frequency
its energy never dies
its energy never lies
I give myself life once again
reviving my soul to its standard
yet always surpassing where I last was
I will keep growing
until it is time for me to go home

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Poetry

Letter to Lola

As you rest in power, I can’t help but to think of a string of apologies that I’ve kept at the back of my throat
The strength in holding them weakened my voice
So I apologize for staying silent for so long,
I’m sorry I’ve missed you

I’m sorry for my absences
I never thought my attendance would matter in the long run
I skipped quality time for time that ticks money
And now I’ll never be able to share my wealth with you
The times I’ve spent while away
While paying my dues
While making sure that I was okay, first and foremost
If there is one thing university taught me, it’s that skipping classes will have you miss out on key lessons – and most times they’re not from the textbook

I’m sorry for being selfish
It was so hard for me to see you suffer
I watched you carry my sister, my younger cousins
As I am sure you have carried me, Chris, Jas, Kuya and Ate too
Your arms spread like Nike’s wings, you carried us to victory
Up until you no longer could
Up until we ourselves learned how to fly on our own
And had to look down to see you laying with all of your strength confined to your bed
It hurt to see you incapable
It hurt to fly without you
I promise the clouds will comfort you more than your bed ever has

I’m sorry for letting go too soon
For the times I’d see you and not hold your hand long enough
For not constantly reminding you who I was
Who I am
Anak si Pidong. Anak si Meren. Capatid si Melissa.
I will never forget the smile that shone when you remembered
It was the brightest 10 seconds before memories faded back to black

I’m sorry for not being by your side in your last moments
But I promise you I celebrated life
Especially yours and its freedom into eternity
I felt the supernova of your soul touch the atmosphere
Maybe that’s why it was scorching outside that day
I felt the heat of your steps catching every beat
I swear you were with my friends and I
You let me know that you can walk again
That you can sing again
That you remember who the fuck I am

And I know you can see and hear me better now
But I’m sorry that this is not in Ilokano or Tagalog
Though I recently developed a craving for it
I still yearn for my mother tongue
An opportunity for a seat at the table
An opportunity for a seat with you
I wanted to know your story
To capture the beginning of as far as I knew the Toquero’s ran
The start of Tita Rose’s crawl
It was the beginning of us being rooted to you
We are the fruits of your neverending labour
Though we are not your end
Your legacy will transcend generations

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Poetry

the start of the words i’ll never say

I wish I was in love with you
that way I have a reason to be sad
a reason to cry over you

But I’m not
[if this isn’t love, then what is it]

yet I’m sitting on waterfalls
wondering how I got here
how I got this far up
when I knew the fall will be much harder
but this hurts more than I anticipated
water crashing all around me
I’m swimming in my own pool

Tales were meant to be tales
yet this one is coming true
the one disappearing act I thought nothing of
until days rendered deserted
I was slowly becoming the ones I claimed to not be
the ones you left in the dust with no regard
when I once was held to the highest degree
and now it’s
just

me

sending daily reminders
when I know you’re no longer there
when in fact I was reminding myself,
“Hope you’re good”
I hope I’m good, too

I’ve lost count of the days
perhaps it’s been weeks
I think months now,
and I still wonder
if I am going to get the same ending
the same ghost-like hello’s after having dissipated from my periphery

But this time I won’t know for how much longer

 

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Poetry

broken telephone

“Why didn’t you tell me earlier?”

I always find myself tracing calls back
although I’ve cut my line one too many times
I swear there are no strings attached
yet my phone is still in service
all its plugs further intact
I promise I have no complaints

this time.

Reception always commonplace,
our phones more common than I thought
until notifications became a regular memo
thoughts to self, I’d call them
since my ringtone stopped hollering
for me to answer
I just answered to myself

This connection never required to dial up
upgrading the probabilities
the ignition of the right spark
networks flying in every direction
leaving marks within this circuit
a clear switch incapable of prevention
misconstrued signals skipping switches
messages slipping through the cracks
we now face a disconnection

Sorry I was under the wrong impression.

But for the times received,
the sentiments initially intended
I believed the service peaked
always a hit, never a miss
the alluring hum of the dial tone
laughter as a filler for hold music
a consideration for options
this deal almost felt exclusive

I forgot about the fine print.

Now complaints start to pile as I
secretly tested the circuits with other lines
even tried an old one just one time
the attempts to find a comparable connection
led to the discovery of inconsistent reception
yet the results are consistent enough
I stayed because you are the only exception

Though contracts are temporary
your company will always be
my favourite

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Poetry

drive out

She is long gone from these ends
but I remember what she used to taste like
The way her hair flowed as she moved with the wind,
How her eyes lit up in the darkest of nights
you can feel her love when she walked in the room

Now I just feel her footsteps
the beat of each step fit a pattern that deafened me
each step filled with hunger
because she was always empty
her steps meant for something more
for something bigger than herself
her footsteps much bigger than herself
yet she was never going anywhere
just lost in the pattern continuously leading her to
familiarity

the song that never ends
the constant boom-tick of the drumline
beating against the record scratch
the needle stuck in the grooves
but you can find her if you read between the lines
or so she says
or so she says

or so she says

Follow me

I promise this is a new pattern

the trail that ever ends
and she continues to walk the line
unknowingly striding into darkness
hoping to one day chase the light she once saw in her eyes
but there is no looking back

her gaze [only] focused on the end
wherever that may take her.

I still remember what she used to taste like
the way her hair flowed when she moved with the wind
how her eyes shone in broad daylight
but the love is gone from her footsteps

She is long gone from these ends

 

 

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Poetry

mother nature

Moving in synchronicity with my mothers past
I feel at one with the way the world revolves

The speed at which water paces
forcing its presence into new homes
into places it does not belong

But I am here

As existent as the winds during a storm
there is no telling where I will land but

I am here

As vicious as a raging fire
once born a meek flame
I make it known that I am here
yet you manage to walk over me
and I am still here
absorbing your very steps
all while guiding you to your next destination
where I will be

There
Here

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