Saying Goodbye to this Year of our Yearning

To say goodbye to this year

of our yearning is to experience

this holding on to our hope,

timeless and endless.

This has been a year of surprises

like those eternal early morning hours

with their rainbow in the light

rain and balmy sunlight.

It is passing by the hurdles

as the world watches

with its conscience intact.

How it registered

its protest

about elections

about wars

about the seasons of strife

about the dire desires.

How it commandeered

our cargo of cares

to see this multitude of pain

in the way it should be seen

in the hearts of mankind

as each man, woman, child

reeled from the torments

of sufferings

from believing in the lies of life

from lying in the beliefs about life

from living in the belief about beliefs.

The sufferings came about

wearing suits of various kinds

like the success on the sleeves,

the self-serving statements

about offering our prayers for the dead

our tender mercies for merciful murderers

and all those that justified our sad act

of inflicting pain on those who had always known

how is it to survive.

The world watched with its

conscience intact, not a crack,

not yet, as it said in cannot go on

with killing to kill all the obstacles

to life.

This is a moral imperative,

this announcement

of good manners

and right conduct

in this last day of saying

goodbye to the year

of our yearning

even if we are

the mightiest and

the strongest,

even if we own

half of the world

and its kingdoms as the devil promised


This is the best way, and no other better

way, to say goodbye to this year of our lost hopes.

With the wars and terrors, in our words as in our deeds,

we start a new year right with this goodbye

to our irredeemable acts of sparing lies

to tell our truths, to free us of our fears at last.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dec. 31, 2004

Sayangguseng ti Sabangan


Awagantay iti sayangguseng ti sabangan

daytoy a didigra iti tartaraudi ti tawen.

Adu a sarsarita ti panagtutuok ti partuaten

dagiti agpakpakada a dalluyon kadatayo,

ipakadadada dagiti dagensen nga anak

dagiti didigra ti nadawel a danum,

daytay rungsot ken ranggas a nangitabon

dagiti malmalday a sagawisiw ken nakigtot a riaw

dagiti ubbing ken kaippasngay a ragsaragsak

iti paskua dagiti naumbi nga ayat iti taaw

iti malem a mangiyin-inaw kadagiti dungngo

iti sardam a mangisiksikog kadagiti rugso

iti ligsay a mangipasngay kadagiti supapak

dagiti sangsangit dagiti balo a gargarakgak.


Dumuko kadatayo ita ti ladawan ti Ormoc

iti bukod a pagilian. Mangal-alia ti dati a buya

dagiti dung-aw a mailudon iti panagpakada

dagiti lungon ken dagiti maitabon nga igaaw

kadagiti bakras dagiti bambantay

kadagiti saklot dagiti kasamekan

kadagiti ules a naimeng a sorpresa dagiti darikmat

a panaggiinnala ti asi, dandaniw, ken pammakawan.


Kastoy met laeng ti buya a mangbibbibi kadatayo amin ita

iti panagpakada ti tawen. Mamutbuteng ti sayangguseng

ti sabangan a maigamer it nadakiwas nga angin,

mailaok iti nariper a tudo kalpasan ti kaudian

a ginggined dagiti gagar a maitamen kadagiti saem,

dagitay guratayo iti baybay, iti napino a kadaratan

dagitay panangilunodtayo kadagiti lunod ti naarsab a panawen

dagitay panagsalsaludsodtayo iti inggana dagiti gibus a di aggibus

a pamunganayan dagiti awanan sungbat a palimed

dagiti anting-anting dagiti allon ken kigaw a rugso

dagiti makaaligagget nga awanan bain a layus

dagiti sugat iti taotao a agpadpadara a panunot.


Didigra daytoy a sayangguseng ti sabangan,

didigra a sayangguseng, mangiyaw-awan.

Ikisapna dagiti anges a maikisap

Iwalinna dagiti pia a maiwalin

Idatonna dagiti karadkad a maidaton

Iwalangna dagiti biag a maiwalang

Sananto ket irugi ti diram-os dagiti kailian

a testigo iti didigra, dagiti makaidalan

iti umuna a binatog dagiti aliaw

kadagiti sao dagiti nagawan,

dagiti makaibaga iti rugsot dagiti buteng

dagiti nakarikna iti rugsot ti sayangguseng.


Agpayso ti sayangguseng ti sabangan.

Ditay met maliklikan ti unget ti layus.

Kas iti di pannakaliklik kadagiti peggad a sagpaminsan.

Ngem kas iti alinuno, maliklikantay ti pangta ti sabangan,

ti gunay ken galad dagiti danum a mangitayok kadatayo

iti pantok sadatayonto ipisok iti libbuot dagiti rekkang

ti mangigaggagara a dawel. Masapultay ita

ti pammasingked dagiti patigmaan, daytay

di parparato a leksiontay iti peggad.

Ikebesatayo dagitoy, itibnok iti kape

A pangpabang-ar iti nakem iti agsapa dagiti rikrikor,

daytay buribor iti panes dagiti napadso a panaggagar.

Tiliwentayonto dagiti sayangguseng ti sabangan,

Ipupuktayo iti karsel ti naturtured itan a sellang.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dis. 31, 2004

To Invoke the Memory that Matters

We are in the middle of a storm

in this season of profit & phony fun

& to invoke the memory that matters is what matters

at this time. We need to call the witches who will invoke

this memory, our memory, us who need to remember.

There is the sucker of a storm that visits our land

& shore & sand each morning. This havoc of a visit

may last till the next season of sadnesses.

It comes to accompany our worst news,

this loss of lives & livelihoods in a split second,

in Colombo & elsewhere in Aceh,

all these islands in this season of storms

all these islands in this season of typhoons & terror,

in our Manila as well as in Phuket

while a priest, gracefully & with much studied

convent poise, takes his morning meal

of abundance & prayers & indifference.

He did not know, he said, of the coming of the raging waters,

this wall of water wreaking all that can be wrecked,

buildings & bodies

fate & faith

the poor people & their prayers,

all, in substance as well as in its absence.

In all these tragic stories, in our homeland

& in many others, the rest of the world frolics

in the sun in these holidays,

in these demented days of giving gifts courtesy of profiteers of death,

those who invest on imagination & images,

those who play on our small sickly hearts,

those who offer us the seductions

of multiple meanings

of lousy loving & lusting

after lousy loves, like the priest's,

those who believe in the images

of sin when you can no longer

believe in the obese santa claus with his bulging bag

of empty ecstasies from a beribboned box of grief.

We have gone haywire in our hybrid lives,

we who can afford to watch from the sidelines.

We pick up some news from the spirit of the aborted christmasses

like some news from aborted poems & aborted lives,

turn this news into truth, evangelize on behalf of this truth

we create out of repeated lies,

& there,

& there, we import the lies,

we export the lies, we do not call them lies

no more but take them as some kind of a gospel,

& then

we begin to speak in its name

we begin to teach of the new truth in its name

we begin to announce the new salvation in its name,

all of us,

rich & poor alike

the oppressed & the oppressor alike

the commerce-men & consumers alike

the colonizers & the colonized alike

the neocolonizers & neocolonized alike

the emperors & their subjects alike.

It does not matter no more

where we are in this space where we no longer

go figure where we are.

The time does not matter either.

To go through the motions of living,

just the motions, is all that matters

in this tsunami season &

in this season of storms.

As if we all are alive.

As if we all are kicking.

As if we all are breathing.

As if we all are in the world of truth.

As if we all are in this universe saving us from

recollecting what comes with meaning & blessing.

The as if & our belief

is all that matters in the end.

The enchantment of the false kind.

The magic in the fantasy like when we take pride

in our belief in the coup of corpses, whether

from this tsumani of our tears or from church wakes,

the coming again to life of cadavers paraded

or interred in mass graves that promised us the greatness

of greed couched in words wrought in prophesies

of new mornings

of new dawn breaks

of a new redemption from the silly speeches of actors

acting on behalf of dead kings and their queens,

of behalf of ousted presidents who lied to us

in evenings as well as

in daytimes, their lies packaged as the fulfillment of a promise

in the plots of third rate films as well as in imprisoned lives.

These people do not know how to stop.

They have forgotten that some of us,

the poor as well as the enlightened,

have come to know how to spell the beginnings of tall tales

have come to know how to spell the middle of tall tales

have come to know how to put an end to the spell of tall tales.

There is a whole withcraft to all these

& there are witches among us,

the poor & the enlightened,

those who have learned to summon the strong winds,

those who have learned to call again the fierce waters

those who have learned to invoke the memories

of a fecund land for all the landless

of a full meal for all the hungry

of a warm home for all the homeless

of a just job for all the jobless.

This invoking of memory will matter.

It is the only thing that matters now.

This invoking of memory will break the spell.

It is the only one that can break the spell now.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dec. 29, 2004

Ang Numero ng Magandang Kapalaran


Papataas ang numero ng taong darating

pagkatapos ng mga hunos & tsunami

ng mga takot natin. Magbabalik

ang kapangyarihan ng hiwaga sa ating piling,

makikisalo sa ating muling pagpipiging.

Sa pamamagitan ng sugatang

hintuturo at nagnanaknak na isip

ay iguguhit natin,



buong tapang

ang buntot

ng papataas na numero

sa dulo ng ating hinagpis.

Pagmamasdan natin ang guhit

sa malabulak na ulap

at sa nagtatangis na langit,


matingkad na amarilyo

nagmumurang pula,

langit na kambas ng ating pighati

sa isang mahabang taon na tinatapos natin.

Labing-tatlong buwan ng mga lungkot at halakhak

ng mga rumaragasang ulan

ng mga nababaliw na buhawi

sa ating araw-araw na pamumuhay sa bayang mahal

subalit hindi marunong magmahal sa atin.

Limang linggo sa bawat buwan na pagkasabik

ng mga gubat sa paglalandi ng mga bituin

sa gabi ng ating panimdim,

sa gabing dasal ang tugon sa silakbo ng tiyan.

Walong araw sa isang linggo

ng pakikibaka ng mga nasang salarin,

nasa sa katapatan ng mga pangako sa atin

ng mga politikong damdamin

para sa pagkakaisa

para sa kaunlaran

para sa katotohanan

para sa kaaya-ayang buhay

para sa kabutihan ng lahat

mamamayan man o hindi na kapiling natin

mamamayan man o hindi na kasa-kasama natin

sa paggising sa iisang umagang tiyakan ang pagdating.

Kuwadrado ang dulo ng taon

ng ating pag-iisa sa kalungkutan at lumbay.

Parisukat ito ng ating selda

o karsel ng ating ibig marating

na napakaordinaryo lang naman

tulad ng kalayaang magmahal

tulad ng kalayaang magsabi ng katotohanan

tulad ng kalayaang masaksihan ang kagandahan

tulad ng kalayaang umiral na may kabuluhan,

umiral sa mga saknong ng katarungang laan sa atin

at dahil laan ay di na kailangan ang pagbubuwis

ng buhay sa mga walang kapararakang baha

at bagyo, daluyong at dilim.

At sapagkat papaakyat ang numero

sa langit ng ating panalangin,

kailangan nating ipagdiwang ito

kasabay ng pagpapasabog sa nakatagong sama ng loob,

sa siphayo sa dibdib na dinamita ng pag-ibig

sa pagmamahal sa isa't isa

sa pagmamalasakit sa mga kapwa naghihikakos

sa pakikiisa sa mga kapwa inaapi

sa pakikipagtunggali na kasama ang mga pinagkakaitan

ng mga ligaw at nanliligaw na tadhana.

Maghahanda tayo ng mga paputok

& tutuluyan na nating takutin ang lahat na kamalasan

sa bayan man o sa sarili, tutuluyan na nating

palayasin ang lahat ng demonyo

sa mga singit ng gunita ng kawalan ng ganang huminga.

Isasama ang mga ito

sa ingay ng kuwitis,

sa singaw ng supot na lusis

sa malutong na halakhak ng bawang

sa bilis na pag-akyat ng raket sa kalawakan

at doon, doon makikiisa ang lahat ng di magandang kuwentong

likha at dulot ng mahabang panahon ng lungkot.

Magsasabit din tayo ng mga papel na pera,

yung luntian o biyoleta, ano mang kulay,

lahat ng kulay, itali sa bintana,

sa pintuan, sa rehas, sa pasamano,

gawing dekorasyon sa mga dingding

at hayaang laruin ng liwanag mula sa mga butuin,

liwanag na sumusulyap-sulyap mula sa dilim.

Magandang kapalaran ang pahiwatig

ng taong darating, ang dulo nito

ay nakaturo sa hanging patas kung humagupit,

nangangako ng katuparan ng nais:

pagkain sa mesang matagal nang gutom

trabaho sa mga isip na matagal nang tambay

bukirin sa mga kamay na nangangarap magbungkal

kalayaan sa bayang sinasakal.


Papataas ang numero ng taong darating,

magbabalik ang hiwaga sa buhay natin.

Makikisalo sa ating pagpipiging,

ang magandang kapalarang dulot

ng numero ng taong darating.

Sapagkat lalo nating pag-iibayuhin

ang pagkamit sa katarungang atin.

Sapagkat lalabanan natin

ang takot & pagluluksang kinikimkim.

Sapagkat tatapusin natin

ang pagtitiwala sa wala,

sa wakas ay lalayuan na tayo ng malas &

sapagkat palalayasin natin ang malas

sa ating matagal nang nakatikom na palad.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dis. 27, 2004

We Can Never Call it Quits, This Loving of a Heartland Promised

We can never call it quits,

this loving of a heartland

promised a long time ago

by the eternal earth that gives grace,

by the solemn skies that give hope

by the feisty fire that warms our hearts,

in this winter cold as in the sunny days

in the colder climates in the old country.

Baguio comes to mind with its quiet

peace after its share of earthquakes

and its terrrors, its poetry of silence

shattered by the scene, just the mere scene,

of a summer city of regrets & ruins.

Or Baggao as well, in San Jose, for certain.

There the memory comes frolicking,

its tragedy one for the record of firsts & pains.

We see the young child now on that road to

an afterglow of speech to the young,

the speech about some rotten love for others

the speech about some kind of a calling to neglect.

The orange rays of the early morning sun

streak through the foliage serving as cover

from the punishment of the night

that saw both the dead man and his son.

The murderers told the son, perhaps grown

now in years and yearning for the father

who is gone, to start that vigil for the father

sleeping. He was four or five, innocent

as innocence was in these parts.

Yes, I will watch over him,

the child said, the tone final,

the promise faithful.

I will watch over him

and I do not mind the hole

in his head, the blood spurting from his

sides and neck. You see, apo a natuturay,

you see, apo a nabibileg, the rains have come

rampaging from the mountains

and the murky and dirty waters

have washed my tears

have swallowed up my fears

have cleaned the blood on my father's wounds &

have drowned my tears.

I can only watch over him now

with the love that I know,

the knowing love of a child

that has yet to know.

I will grow up to be one

like you, with the bullets encircling you

tough chest, perhaps hardened

by your presiding over punishments

like this one.

I know my father is alive,

will rise from the dead

when the morning comes.

So I will watch over him

& sing to him the lullabyes

I have kept in heart, some of them

he sang to me when I was younger,

about two when this martial law

came to sabotage our sorrowful life.

And the scene comes full circle:

we found the man dead for a day

and a night, his body washed clean

by the furious rains that came with the fierce winds.

Siberian breeze, we called, this coming of chill in the fields

this coming of age of children in dictatorial times

this coming of age for reciting the oath of allegiance

to him and his cohorts, this cabal of megalomaniacs

loving their mirror images in mirrorless mirages.

The times were interesting

& indeed they were so. Priests & nuns

from empty convents & seminaries

in Rome came to talk about redeeming our stories

of disgrace, this fallenness, a people vowing

to a promise that was never there in the first place

except to write it in a false verse of freedom

to mean a decade or two of deliberate deception

and an epiphany of manifold mistakes:

the raising of our hands to respect the heartland

the eradication of rumor to honor the family

the writing of decrees to violate us in thought

the putting up of barricades to exclude us from discourse

the speaking of English to make our mind lesser than an idiot's.

How can we ever call it quits, this loving

of this unruly land of our public selves & lives,

the questions from our emotions raw and fresh

each time we recollect the ages that have come to pass?

Even from our perch, we who have gone away

to exist like exiles elsewhere, in fiction & in fact,

we cannot call it quits. The redundant reminders haunt us:

the coup attempts that are a daily fare

the staging of a funeral to fulfill a fantasy courtesy of the dead

the announcing of corruption in dollars to test the waters of truth

the entitlements of officials' sons & daughters to privileges

the continuing accent on the perks and pelf of greed.

No, we can never ever call it quits.

The payaos are calling us into action even as the ritual

of birthing and dying continues to enchant us.

The payaos are there for the rice farmers to work on,

for the coaxing to yield to the promises of needs

being met, the faithful promises of the elements,

in Kalinga as well as in Dumalneg,

down the sloping terrains of Adams & Carasi,

there we dream of not quitting, we dream of endless

dancing with the soothing winds from calm seas

and gurgling rivulets of our homing hearts.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dec. 27, 2004

Saan a Nakabakasion ti Kritiko nga adda iti Ballasiw-Taaw

(Para ken ni Derick Galam)

Saan a nakabakasion ti kritiko

nga adda iti ballasiw-taaw.

Agsisiim ta agsisiim kadagiti mannaniw

a sitsitik, dagitay man pada nga agiyibbet

kadagiti paliiw ken panirigan a di man

lang napulagidan iti uyokan nga insalog

dagiti bangolan ken baglan kadagiti bantay

dagiti rikna ken sao ken paidam,

kas kadagiti rikna ti agrekrekkang

a kataltalonan, no di agtudo,

di madanuman,

di mabisibisan

ket kadarrato nga agulaw

gapu ti bara ti init

gapu iti karubukob a maparkagan

kas kadagiti sao manipud

kadagiti nasungalngalan

a lusod ken paratong,

pagalaan kadagiti aros-aros ken abal-abal

nga ikirog santo mantekaan,

yasmang iti kilabban a ladawan

dagiti ittip ken kalluto a bayag

kas kadagiti paidam dagiti amin

a linteg dagiti kinikillo a wagas

ni ayat para iti ili ken kakailian,

sipud pay idi aginggana ita,

linteg dagiti kuraddaddeng a ragsak,

no agpasugnod ket agdalupisak

iti tapok nga inisbuan dagiti artek

isuda a mangibabaet kadagiti amin

a di mapnek

ket gapu ta dida maipeksa ti anek-ek

iti presidente ken konggreso dagiti tagainep,

ayna, kaka, adi, barok, kabagis, uliteg

itaray-buagitda metten ti mangikurimes

iti bir wenno basi wenno arak ti basi,

sioktong wenno gin dagiti agimpapadi no adda

uray no alkohol a perresanda iti dalayap

wenno kalamansi nga agbugbugsot

imbag lang a lumansad iti boksit,

sadiay nga ulawenna ti ulaw iti pannakabisin

iti man hustisia wenno maikammet a maipauneg

iti man ayat a nainsapasapan wenno mangilaslasin

iti man lagip iti igado wenno kaldo a kalding,

ayna, ania met ngaminen

dagiti pada a sitsitik a mannaniw

ta maysada met a pada nga ulaw,

agidaniwda iti ayat a natarnaw

ngem dida met idaniw dagiti aglaladut

nga igaaw wenno dagiti alikuno kadagiti karayan

a sippayuten dagiti madaydayaw a mannanakaw,

itayokda ti ere sadanto ipasurot iti angin.

force majeure, kunando, iti lengguahe

a ditay maawatan, datayo a di pay nakapagtakaw

iti man dignidad wenno respeto wenno kinatakneng

iti man parparawpaw a dayaw

iti man pammarang a kinabaknang ti isip,

ta di kadi uray ayat ti idaniw

ket masapul met nga igamer ditoy

dagiti estoria ti daraan a sulisog

dagiti estoria ti patingga ti rugso

dagiti estoria ti panaginnala dagiti rikna

no kasta

nga awan mataog

nga awan mayabraw

nga awan maisagpaw iti agdadata a saluyot

nga awan masagat a bugguong ti makilnawan a garrapon

nga awan ti maaramid ti pusa no di agkukot iti dalikan

nga awan ti kakatawaan ti beggang a maarunan

gapu ta

adda sansilmo a mangyaw-awan iti presidensia

adda baknang a suitik a residente iti kapitolio

adda manglimlimo a natakneng iti konggreso

adda singguarding a presidente iti palasio

isuda, isuda amin dagitoy ti makaigapu

no apay nga iti panagrasuk ti daratayo

iti man rabii wenno kadagiti oras ti kannag

ket ditay marikna dagiti riknatayo

ket ditay ammo dagiti ammotayo

ket ditay maidaniw dagiti daniwtayo.

Ayna, apo, saan a nakabakasion ti kritiko

dagiti parmatatayo. Agsipsiput ta agsipsiput

iti madusagna a sungo. Agpadpadaan

iti panakpakennna a sinsinansao,

partuat dagiti pada a sitsitik a mannaniwtayo.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dis. 26, 2004

Stilling the Young Spirit, Your Gift

In our twenties

we begin

to dream real

and big

and grand.

The dreams

are beyond us,

past our names

and memories

of a world familiar

and certain,

our city

without walls

without borders

without contours

without trajectories

as you root now

in the vast

land of loves

coming up too soon,

relations springing up

like spring flowers

bursting in colors,

always in full bloom

as our stories needing


stilling too

like our own storms within

and out.

Out you go into the world,

young man,

and see the promises

of fall and summer

in the city of your mind.

There is the bright

dawn coming up,

its glow the orange

and red of life

made whole by

your loving soul.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA


Ti Bannawag Iti Banna Ni Ayat

(Para ken Joel Manuel, maestro ti ili)

Patgen a maestro dagiti an-anek-ektayo amin,

datayo a naparaburan iti talugading a mangikissiim

no ania ti sukog dagiti ayat kadagiti dadapilan

kas met kadagiti balitang iti Banna wenno iti amin

a purpurok dagiti kararuatayo a makasimsimsim

la unay iti naidumduma nga ayat dagiti kannag:

Umuna unay, pagyamanak ti panangilalaemmo

kadagiti titulo dagiti ayat nga adda kadagiti daniwko.

Kunam a maysaakon a makipagili iti lubong.

Ninanamko dagiti balikas, maestro. Inimasko man

ti panaglabay kadagiti nalimed a timek kadagiti insawang,

inggaok iti pinggan a ganggang a nakipaggarampang

iti garakgak dagiti beggang. Ruburob, kunadan sa

iti kasta, kas iti panagruburob met ti nakem

nga agkawili no pumanaw. Kasta, kasta

ti panunotko, maestro.

Nagtalakias ti bagi a sumuko kadagiti poder

ti panawen. Ngem siririing a kankanayon ti lasag

a linukag dagiti espiritu ni ayat, ti bannawag

iti Banna ni ayat, amin a Banna, ti Banna iti panunotmo

wenno ti Banna iti ginnasanggasat kadagiti makabiag

a balikas,

daytay awanan timek wenno rima,

awanan iti alpabeto wenno alibata,

daytay balikas kadagiti imas ti tupig

a maidiaya kadagiti sibibiag ken

kadagiti napanen

iti sabali a biag,

daytay balikas nga agindeg

kadagiti sardam ti panagrugso dagiti rikna

a managdakiwas,

daytay balikas dagiti ayat iti takiag

a maidiaya iti agdudungsa a malem,

wenno nasapa pay laeng a rabii iti lenned,

wenno tay agsapa iti allawig a narungsot

ket iddepenna ti agbambantay a temtem,

daytay balikas ti lagip ti ubing

kadagiti sinublan wenno panagtambotambong

wenno panagparadusdos wenno tay makapnek

nga angot ti kaad-adaw a tagapulot

nga iputipot ti tamudo a pangikur-it

iti man pitak wenno iti tapok ti kuaresma

ti maipapan ti adu nga ipupusay ken panagungar

ti ili a nagnakman wenno

ti ili a nakakugitan ti rikna

ti ili a pinanawan ngem kadarrato a suksuknalan

kas iti isusuknal iti templo dagiti titulo ni ayat

kas iti isusuknal iti sakramento dagiti sasainnek

kas iti isusuknal iti bagnos dagiti bannawag

a partuaten iti panid dagiti tawen

a panaglangan ti rikna wenno

dagiti daniw a gumawgawawa

a maikur-itkur-it,

daytay balikas

iti panagbunniag kadatao, maestro,

a maysaakon a makipagili iti lubong.

Nagimnas a balikas, ket pagyamanak

ti nakalemmeng a pammati kadagiti di mangar-artiok

nga ayat. Dokumentado dagitoy, maestro,

ket dimo kadi itan ibabawi. Aglapunos ti puso

kadagitoy a ganggannaet a rikna,

sappuyotendak nga ilili

iti angin a makapabang-ar ditoy adayo a lugar,

milia-milia a panagaskaw ken panagagpang

kadagiti mangliwengliweng a taaw

dagiti bambanag a babantot met laeng,

kas iti daniw a di maisurat

kas iti lagip a di makaidna

kas iti panagyaman a naladaw a nayebkas.

Makipagiliakto man iti lubong,

adda met lubong iti ili a naggapuan, maestro.

Daytoy ti lubong dagiti agalla-alla nga isip,

agbirbirok iti inana kadagiti sangsangit ti ili,

iti kappia kadagiti kanalbuong dagiti adu a peggad

kadagiti layus, dawel, ken panagbaybay-a.


Daytoy tay lubong dagiti balikas

a makaagas, mangisagut iti imbag

kadagiti sugat iti biag ken lasag ken anasaas

ni rangranggas, iti isip wenno iti pagilian.

Ditoy nga agwerret, maestro, ti pluma.

Ditoy a mangiputot ti kambas

kadagiti adu pay a saem a naganan

kadagiti adu nga eksena nga iladawan

kadagiti adu a lubong a mabukatan

kas iti panangbukat kadagiti baro nga uma

kadagiti turturod tapno

agbiag dagiti rangkis

agkanta dagiti tumaytayab

agsagawisiw dagiti masikog a pagay

agsala dagiti bugbugian a dalag iti waig

agulang dagiti desdes iti kapanagan

agpadaya dagiti amin nga agkanaganan.

Ala, leppasekon, maestro, ta makaaduakon.

Iti sumuno a surat manipud iti partuatek

a bannawag ditoy adayo a nakaipalladawan,

ibunannagkonto ti kapay-an dagiti exilo

a kas kaniak, dakami nga intalawataw

dagiti bituen a madi met nga agrimatrimat.

Siraraem ken sidadayaw,

Kabsat nga agsursurat iti daniw

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance/Palos Verdes/Redondo, CA

Dis. 26, 2004

Spirit Hungering for Colors

It comes so easy, this sadness in black.

It is summer here & the heat rises

to remind us all of the lies of spring,

the ruses of fall & the sins of man,

women and those who pray for glory

who pray for gold.

There are many of these kinds

in Los Angeles, down towards

the Wilshire boulevard of the capitalists

and spirit brokers,

those who know how to spell

God's name in reverse,

their utterance real,

their action more than so.

There have been a number of us

who have come to believe

in Monday miracles, blessings too

all year round even

as they empty our pockets

as they mortgage our name.

How much longer we say, how much?

The spirit hungers for the bread

that comes from our trying to be kind.

It comes not so easy, this joy in blue.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Los Angeles, CA


On Waiting as a Virtue or Vice

It is really like this, amigo,

this willful awaiting the coming

of clear clouds from

the cold days when providence

does not come on cue.

We take the free lunch at Virgie's as usual,

order the same half-and-half meal

to save on precious dough and desire

as we live our daily lives,

deep & dark as the Redondo nights

that we count against the days

of numbering what is left of dinners and breakfasts

that will never be reserved for us.

Like the prosaic in the hunger,

there is poetry in writing up of our pain

we now know, the same pain we

have given a name lately.

There is hope in the grey clouds,

still & calm, the hope cool & collected

like the way we all are all the time.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Artesia, CA


The Children Remember The Anniversary Of Our Loves

(For Leah, Ayi, Camille & Nasudi Francine)

The children remember

the 20th anniversary

of our loves multiplied.

There is algebra here,

the abstraction of emotions

going linear & then circuitous,

curving beyond

the boundaries of blase despair

& desires.

It is our 20th, past many

years after we buried

a leader coming home

from self-exile, his widow in tow,

the bubby daughter delivering

a dramatized eulogy of her father's

opposition to that which does not matter

to loving a land,

to giving up your life for a people

as grateful as the cold waters of seas

sacred and all-giving

in these tortured and tormented islands.

The purging waters are there,

have always been there,

surrounding us and reminding us

of our intractable solitudes

to wash away the impurities

of sacrificing less for

the purpose of a nation of lies & liars,

the purpose perhaps destined or denied.

A year after we married ourselves,

just the two of us, with our mutual cares

for our witness, our covenant sealed

by the streets becoming hungrier

& angrier as the months went by.

That was the year preluding a first

people power of self-redemption.

It was the postlude to producing paradise,

a grandiose one as befitted

a people long deprived.

The hunger was more

because we were starting life anew,

because we were starting a new life

from the old ones, investing on our

memory of new society money

that was never in our hands

but in the pockets of robbers

& those who we voted to bleed us dry.

The anger was more for allowing

ourselves to forget to grieve for our

incalculable loss of lives & laughters

as we saw the dissenters to the dictator

& his agents inaugurate a salvaging spree,

one at a time initially,

two at a time gradually,


the eventual massacre

of the dissenters' dreams

of the best breakfast of dried fish,

fried rice with a generous sprinkling

of garlic to ward off the evil in the thought

of meals & many more lives crucified in the sun,

or in the palate that savors & remembers

the truth of a hemorrhaging homeland,

gone crazy

gone mad

its blood curdling

its own healing word

gone astray with the strong winds

coming from all directions,

the winds tempting us to declare

a moratorium of deaths & despair

in order to get to our feet to fight the foe

in our hearts,

the emotions expressing themselves

in raw forms & shapes & language,

killing us softly even as we partake

of new promises for a new dawn,

the breaking

of a new day from the deep & dark night.

The dictator, sick & losing sanity with his

bloated bluff & the blunder of a wife's

blackmailing him

& his promised greatness of a land,

showed himself off,

his dictator's exhibit number one,

the chest of a carinoso primero,

the decaying muscle of a madman,

& capricious self-importance entwined.

To prove my loyalty to his oath, he said.

So he showed the carcass of his mind,

once genuine

once pristine

once eloquent

now the epitaph of a murderous love

of land and lust

of people and their power.

& so we kept on, the young wife

& the young man,

their dream of home & hearth blessed

forever by the stars and skies

in the sidestreets of their loves, ours,

in Palawan in Sta. Mesa

& then moving to Maria Payo

& then moving to the days

of extreme need & want

even as the funeral of a hero

gathered millions to see him go,

blessed him more & more for the courage

blessed him more & more for the energy

that rebuilt us in this infinity of extreme sacrifice

the angered hungry land called us to offer.

We witnessed all even as we dreamed:

the snap elections that electrified us

with its newly-minted 20-peso bills

that made the rounds of slums

& squatters colonies

& guilt-stricken minds.

We remember there was this family fight,

the daughter & the father,

the daughter the young wife.

Did the father say

do not take it, the freshly & crisp

bills with the blabbing boast

of a dying god

do not

take it & put it into the pockets of fate

& our direst destinies.

Do not be practical.

Do not be pragmatic.

Do not be w-i-s-e. As wise as the traitors of a land.

But more. & more transcending.

The young wife said

she was taking the bribe to buy milk for the son,

born before his time, always in a hurry

like all the babies in those dimmest of days,

coming before the early hours

had the chance to peep

into the window of our new love,

this young one who did not see the fear

in us but was there just the same,

his presence the cause of his mother's fear,

her challenge to his young man to get real

& get lost

& scram

& drop all his willingness to fight,

hand-in-hand with the rest, the clerics

as well as those who despised them,

the nuns as well as those who think

of them as the capitalists of our charities,

the seminarians who dream of sex with sirens

from tabloid centerfolds they insert

in their breviaries & bible commentaries,

the socialites with their fake standard English

& their military security men as drivers

moonlighting as their lovers,

the party leaders of both hands & in-between

who dream of raking it all,

the resources & respect,

the wealth & wisdom,

the dignity & decency

they could buy in four-gives or five-six

or in appending on their names the flat word,

"honorable" as an honorable man can be

with his delusions of grandeur and devilish ways,

one act for the public to consume,

another for the private world to keep

such as: the giving of varnished coffins for the dead

& accepting commissions from a relief project

for victims of truth and meaning

for victims of fellow victims

for victims of the impotency to name our pains

& call it quits, this lie that was always poised

to resurrect, always poised to resurrect.

We saw it all, the young wife & the young man,

& those were the days of doom & gloom

& the social cancer kept on spreading

& the social cancer could not be arrested

& the social cancer got bigger & bigger

& the social cancer became a behemoth

& the social cancer became a bad phantasm

for a young couple and their first born

trying to grow in years with grace.

The young man with the young wife

& the young child said: I go.

I go & you cannot tell me I cannot.

& so he went to the Mendiola of his fears,

climbed over the iron fortress

of a palace of booby traps,

& brought home a piece of a barb wire

for the memories.

He saw the anger & he told this to his son

who knew from his silence and the clapping

of his chubby hands, a less than a year-old

listener of narratives of collective aches.

The royal picture

had been ransacked, stepped on,

with a thousand

heavily-burdened steps & soiled footmarks

marking the smiles of daughters,

a son, & a pair of parents

that forgot how to reign in their strange lives.

We moved on from here.

We moved on from the stories of selling

books for a bargain in Recto to buy

the medically prescribed milk

& the hopes for the better for the uncharted universe

of young parents with its countless challenges.

Or buy the medicine.

Or pay off the hospital money

for the two weeks of incubating a first born

& make him ready to face the world

of adults cheating us of our beautiful dreams.

Between them, the young wife & the young man

are 20 years. Among the children, the stories,

solemn & sanctifying, are twenty years

& will be told forever beyond the ages.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dec. 26, 2005

On Loving Purely, Simply

(For Ralph Besijos, because you wanted this poem for Glenna)

Loves go on in circles

like games

we play, in childhood

as in our adult cares.

We come and go

into this abyss

of passion coming alive,

entrenched in cracked

conceits we define

in songs we hide

in the pockets of evenings

when we lose

and find the same

absences that matter so.

We think thoughts

visiting us

as we seek and do not find

as we find but do seek.

Today is the first day

of our birth

in these new-found loves.

Redeemed we are,

we look for the faces

that haunt us in twilights,

some regrets residing

in our broken hearts.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Artesia, CA


On Long Distance Loving

We learn the lessons right smack

into this free lunch. We think

we know some truths

we never imagined they are.

As if to survive in a new land

is a song's seething line, we trust

and love, give kindness each time,

charity, faith too, minus the cymbals,

clanging with the emptiness we divine,

the good graces we miss for missing

the grey clouds, codes for our

expectations long overdue, many times

long done. Long distances they are,

these hoping and believing

and struggling. There are oracles

in the sun and season

in the wind and rain and cold moon.

In the meantime, we keep hanging on,

just keep hanging on, hanging on.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Artesia, CA


Mass at St Philomena, Sunday

(For momsy, because you help me pray)

Today you go to mass

a twin grace, one promised

another a perk

for forgiving.

The absolution is

for the suffering

for the thousand sorrows

for the thousand penitences

that never end.

You savor the autumn

afternoon guarding

the church door

filled with missteps,

human and priestly.

The incense fills

you and the days

in your dream

become as heady

as spring awakening

even if the flowers

have yet to christen

the red rites

of resurrecting remembering,

making the act a covenant

for believing.

The altar birds

in this late fall

do not sing,

the tabernacle plants

die a little,

the buds wither

in the wet weather,

you are late

for the early laughter.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA


Pagniniig ng mga Panaginip sa Pag-ibig

(Para sa kabiyak at mga supling--at sa ika-20ng

anibersaryo ng pag-iisang dibdib)

Nagniniig din ang mga panaginip

Natin sa pag-ibig,

Pawang mga sukat at tugma

Ng ating dalawampung taong pag-iisang dibdib.

Di natin akalain na ang malawak na tubig

At ang di maabot na langit ang sasaksi

Sa ating anibersaryo sa diwa at sa isip.

Ngayon at bukas at sa lahat ng panahon

Sa ating puso, tayong dalawang nagmahal

At patuloy na nagmamahal,

Ay dadami at dadami at ang dalawang

Tayo noon ay magiging isang bayan,

Isang malaking bayan na magluluwal

Ng mga bagong bayan tulad

Ng sa atin: mga supling na marunong

Magmahal sa sarili, mga supling na

Marunong magmahal sa iba.

Dadalawa tayo noon.

Pero ngayon ay kasali na

Ang mga anak na nanggaling sa ating

Mga lino at unan at sa pagsabog ng ulan

Sa mga tuyot na tuyot na mga pilapil

Sa mga talata ng ating mga nasa,

Sa sabik ng mga gabing ayaw matulog,

Sa lambing ng mga disoras sa dilim

Na ayaw maantok.

Lumarga tayo sa buhay

At pumalaot sa dagat

Ng pagbabakasakali.

Isang taon,

Nasa tuktok tayo ng mga alon.

Isang taon ay sa ilalim tayo

Ng mga agos.

Isang taon ay kasama

Natin ang bagyo at hunos

At daluyong, kasama ang bahang

Umanod sa ating pangamba at takot.

Sa bawat taon, muli at muli

Nating binigkas ang panunumpa

Sa pagniniig ng mga panaginip

Sa pag-ibig na para sa atin

Sa pag-ibig na para sa iba.

At napagtanto natin

Ang mga kabanata ng panahon,

Ang walang katapusang sukat

Ng ating panahon, tayong dalawa,

Tayong dalawang naging bayan,

Tayong naging bayan na magiging bayan.

Dugtong-dugtong ang mga araw,

Linggo, buwan, taon, dekada,

Tag-ulan, tag-araw, at pagbangon.

At ang ngayon ang tagapagdugtong.

Sapagkat ang ngayon

Ang puso ng paulit-ulit na panunumpa.

Ngayon ay isama na natin

Sa panunumpa ang mga anak na di atin.

Nananahan sila sa tahanan ng lahat

Ng mga alalahanin ngunit di nanggaling

Sa ating mga kumot, gabi, at ligaw na balakin.

Ngayon ay kakabit silang

Lahat sa ating anibersaryo,

Tayong kapwa guro sa silid-aralan

ng mga siphayo at pakikibaka,

Tayong kapwa mag-aaral sa maraming aralin

sa pagdarahop at paghahabol ng mailuluto,

Tayong kapwa magulang ng mga anak ng bayang

Magmamahal sa mga kapwa anak ng bayan.

Malayo man tayo sa isa't isa

Ay kaylapit din natin.

Iisa ang layon,

Isa din lamang ang pakay

Sa paglayo:

Ang pagbabalik sa isa't isa,

Saksi ang mga gabi at araw dito man

Sa tahanang wala ang mga halakhak

Ng mga anak na dumidiskarte sa buhay

Ng mga anak na dumisdiskobre kung ano ang bukas

Ng mga anak na di atin na kasama natin

Sa lungkot at galak

Sa hirap at pananagumpay

Sa pakikibaka at pagpapalakas ng loob

Sa pakikipagtunggali at pagpapatibay ng hanay.

Bukas, sa kaarawan ng ating anibersaryo,

Mamimitas tayo ng sariwang pag-asa

Sa mga punong-kahoy sa ating bakuran,

Sa mga bulaklak sa ating halamanan

Sa mga dingding at pintuang tagapagtala

Ng ating nakikipagdimang kasaysayan.

Isama nating pagdiskursuhin ang mga anak,

Atin man o sa bayan.

Isa-isa silang magtestimonya

Sa ating tagumpay

At kabiguan, sasabihin nila ang ating

Walang katapusang pagpapanibagong-buhay.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dis. 26, 2004

Coup Country

It has become natural now,

this news about coup plots

and the overthrow of the past.

They do it each time,

every time, this exercise

in inverted exclamation point,

for effect and insight.

Before this coup became

a fad, we lived on fear

each time we heard about power

being grabbed by some

well-meaning soldiers

of our rights and regrets.

Once they were young, these

protectors of our decent dreams,

with their energy and exuberance,

some qualities they never lacked

but always had in excess

the way the daylights always

were in excess in the summers

of our happy lives.

Now this talk about coup

in the country is normal.

We think differently now

when the powerholders

cannot exhibit some specs

about who will take over,

who will become the guardian

of morals even as the protector

& preserver of righteousness

presides over the drawing

of the lucky lots

in the numbers game

of life in these islands.

One morning, as a big shot

was about to be buried,

a nation's daughter

is laid to rest in an urn,

the angels dancing with her remains

even as her spirit smiles back.

The early hours were quick

and they came with the break

of dawn and danger.

A coup was supposed to be had,

with the junta to oversee

all, with the junta managing

our grief for the downtrodden,

the destitute, the dead,

the dying. It is for a show,

this seizing of the seconds,

an instant in the time of tantrums

for those who think well of the country

but have only the guns and gold.

No glory there, not at this time,

but the opportunity to amend

the way things are to be said

the way the saying is to be said

the way the said is to be un-said.

We will always be in this coup

country. Coup after coup

of the memory as well as the mind,

we will rise up. The ashes of the dead

will be called back from the urns

and from the graves. The elements

will call the ashes back,

the earth to offer the sacrament of matter

the air to offer the sacrament of the unseen

the water to offer the purging

of purses and pockets

of coup plotters and their accomplices &

the fire to make our counter-plot

better & best.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dec. 22, 2004

Ti Panagungarto ti Panday

No madanon ti maikatlo nga aldaw

Iti kinaitatta dagiti ar-araraw

Agungarto ti naitabon a tellaay

Makipagungar iti agungar a panday.

Kastoy ti ebanghelio dagiti mannanao,

Dagiti tarabit a komersiante iti sao,

Dagiti suitik a merkader rigrigattayo,

Dagiti mangay-ayam kinaawanan gawaytayo.

Maysa nga eksena ti tularamid daytoy,

Daytay panangiwaragawag karit a kastoy,

'Tay panangisaklang kadagiti dadaulo,

'Tay panangikorte iti gagem a sekreto.

Planuenda dagitoy a gagem iti rabii,

Iti katengngaan ridep a manangngaasi,

Dagiti agbambantay nga oras iti idda,

Dagiti mangbenbendision a panagatipapa.

Ta ania ngarud ti maaramidan dagiti kailian,

Ta ania ngarud ti bileg dagiti agsarsaraawan,

No di agtainep iti padaya a pagraragsakan,

Panagpunsion dagiti boksit a mabisbisinan?

Isu nga iti agmatuon dagiti liday ken ladingit,

Simmangparagsit met dagiti lallaki a natangsit,

Balabalaenda dagiti wagas ti sabali a sangsangit,

Patalappuagawenda agmangmangisit nga ansisit.

Sinnubot daytoy, kunada, sinnubot agingga't inggana,

Panangisalakan pannakapadso dagiti sapasap a lulua,

Sinnubbot a panangiprusision iti bangkay ti panday,

Sinnubbot a pangtubay iti rikna nakariing a nagabay.

Ay-ayamenda nga awan patinggana, ay-ayamenda latta,

Ti ladawan ti malalaki iti muging dagiti parmata,

Daytay ladawan ti malalaki a taklin dagiti pobre,

Daytoy maitabon a ladawan iti kamposanto ti kari.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dis. 23, 2004

The Gospel According to a Work Authorization

This is a timeless

trick, an eternal exile's

redeeming grace from all

that which ails the wandering spirit

as you search and seek

from one sea to another

from one door to another

from one street to another

from one country to another

as it has always been,

this quest for new ways

this looking for new roots

if at all this is possible

when mornings have migraines

when the days are dull and dark

& appear but just briefly

& the nights

come right after a late lunch

at a Starbucks corner,

a cup of the cheapest

capuccino and carrot cake,

one slice, just one slice

to make do with the budget

to put an end to that hunger pang

you would not want to bring home

in the night, let it sleep

in your double dream of bounty

and bad vibes.

The gospel according

to a work authorization

is so simple and not.

It is born of purple verses

sometimes seedy and cloudy and sad.

The formula for good and evil

is all there: say the wise word,

the sincere speech, and you are finished.

Say the truth and your truthfulness

comes under fire for saying

something about kindness,

good intentioned, yes, indeed,

but does not produce the desired effects.

It is a contradiction, this.

A bundle of blunders

you do not want to get into

nor commit if you have got

that modicum of self-respect.

You need to think

of the rice money, you say.

Survive and the imperatives

of urgent ethics

will come and visit you.

It is life, the jungle's joke.

But then you say,

we need to sip the aroma

of each cheap hot coffee

even if we down all the dregs,

caffeine and all

to perk up our days.

And so you listen

to other concocted tales,

jugular and jazzy

dazed and dazzling,

the same old tales about promises

for progress and prosperity

by all the presidents you have known

whether here or elsewhere

in the homeland or the heartland

in lands familiar or foreign.

It is about the magic

of myths, the authorization

to work under the tables

of the rich and the not-yet

this last the compatriots'

collecting the sum

of your tears and fears

& calculating the profits

& giving you some morsels

to taste the bitterness of your days.

It is also working side by side

with kitchen sinks,

or above them.

You pray for tips on how to remove

the dirt on your fingertips

not so much because

you do not want others to know

but because others do no care to know

that in a land so far away

you have to work the sewers

you have to work the edges

of hope and losing it

like helplessly watching

the gathering dusk

& not being able to summon the light.

Some stories tell of other things:

a quick divorce without love

in a chapel in the dessert

now the haven of sinners

and saints, traitorous thieves

and decent workers on the furlough

those who labor day-after-day to gamble

with the hours and fate,

to tease the chips and the slot machine

so you can call out, "Come on, big money,

come on, big money!"


in the name of a card that

tells you you can now cheat

to your heart's content,

& all of a sudden you remember

all the dark days when

the sugarcane cutters

of Oahu and Maui

save up on calories

to calm down their hunger.

It is still the same

after all these years,

from Allos' stories

to the Stockton scenes of shame,

that episode about dogs

not being allowed to get in

where food and abundance were served

about Filipinos with pug noses

and the look of famine

in their faces

not permitted to imagine

how food was laid out on dainty tables

for effect, the warning on the wall

with its fake pretenses for politeness.

So today, as you get to open

the envelope containing

all your wishes to work and work,

you remember all, the tragedies

and terrible takes

on what is it to be an alien

in a universe of everything english,

loving and living like they do

from dawn to daybreak

from the long a to the short a

from the idiom to the contraction

of both your language and your lips.

With the work authorization

in your hand, you leave for work,

you begin to live to work,

you begin to work to live.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dec. 22, 2004

This is a Day of Mourning in Two Time Zones

This is a long day of mourning in two time zones,

One a nowness in the manner of accounting the dead

Another in a people's presence from church to crypt.

It is a season beyond borders where sorrows start.

In a war-torn country of dust, terror, and ancient earth

Soldiers partake of a meal of brown cake and nervousness

And down their yearnings for many cold Christmas mornings

With the obligatory red wine and whining to hide the tears.

In another divided land sundered by centuries of oraciones,

One nagging novena to a saint for each day of all the weeks,

One for a patron in the time of rain and storm and flood,

A sea of the masses of people fill the void of pre-dawns

And the warm streets, carry their lost hopes on their shoulders

Even as they trod on past snaking alleys and calm callehon,

Past the early hours and the many nights that had not slept,

Beyond the celluloid dream for a hero that gave quick relief

From the day-to-day troubles and telling temptations

In the theatre of traitors and cheats, manic masters

Masquerading as saviours, messiahs for our miseries,

Narrators all in this our tangled histories of duplicities.

We monitor both events from afar, distant but awed

By the fierce energy that springs from how mornings

Give off much courage for all of us to move on and on,

Believing that a future awaits us, a morrow of song

And singing in this rhythm of life we think we knew

Or have at least divined somewhere in horoscopes

Or in the facile formation of lunatic moons and stars

Or in the multiplying mercies of remembered sobs,

Many if we think of all that which we need to mourn,

Many if we think of all the names now that we etch

In the pantheon of all that have died for peace

And for war, in the peace of an unwanted war,

Here or elsewhere or in countries beyond the seas,

In cities beyond the skies, beyond our shared stories

Of fighting for justice outside dark filmic realities

Of searching for meaning beyond armored speech.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dec. 21, 2004

Umay ti Namnama iti Bigat

Uray kasano a tutuok, uray no agtulakaktayo

Iti waw ken bisin ken amin a panagbuteng

Umay ti namnama, kadarato nga umay

Iti bigat dagiti darepdeptayo, iti panawen

Ti panagriingtayo a nasapsapa ngem

Dagiti malinnaawan ken naridap a rikna.

Kuna dagiti damag iti daga a nakayanakan:

Sakasaka ken saksakidol dagiti mamati

A sumuknal iti templo dagiti masida

Wenno kalluto a kabaruanan, wenno

Bang-i ti ittip a rumasuk iti rusok,

Manglanglangan iti husto a bussog

Mangsegsegga iti iliw iti nalingta nga ikan,

Dagitay maalaw kadagiti malmalmes a danum

Kadagiti matikawtikaw a baybay. Iti sabangan

Dagiti amin a regget iti asin a maimurumor iti labay

Wenno maisudsusudsod kas iti bukel ti utong

Kadagiti gumawgawawa a bakras dagiti turod,

Sadiay nga agkammaysa ti tamnay iti bisintayo

Ken ti apgad dagiti nakail-ilala unay a sirmata

Maipapan kadagiti manumeruan a maipapel

A kinalabon kadagiti pagraramanan a ragsak,

Pekpekkel para kadagiti isu amin a tagainep

A madi ken nalidem, kontra signos ti dakes

Iti gasat wenno iti kapay-antayo a kayattayo

Met laeng, wenno kinayattayo lattan ta awan

Ngamin dagiti bandos wenno bituen iti sardam

A mangisuro iti umiso a pul-oy a kannayon

Dagiti pia ken karadkadtayo manipud idi punganay

Ken agingga koma itatta. Ngem ala, adda paripirip

Maipapan iti panagballigitayo a mangipayapay

Iti aklo a malmalday sakbay a kalungkongentayo

Dagiti kalangakang a pinggan wenno ungot.

Malagiptayo dagiti seremonia ti linglingay,

Am-ampog iti mata kas iti ubing a nakusim,

Daytoy ar-arkos dagiti dila dagiti tatang,

Senial dagiti naimot pay laeng nga aldaw,

Ti managimbubukod a pariok wenno banga

Wenno sinublan a pagalaan iti bingay

Iti pagdadayaan. Ditoy a sumangbay

Dagiti lagip, dumtengda kas mannanakaw

Iti rabrabii wenno katengngaan ti aldaw:

"Asin, asin, makalulukmeg iti pingping,

Asin, asin, makalulukmeg iti pingping."

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dec. 20, 2004

Miting de Avance for Ayi

(For a son who writes poems about his love for his land)

Young man, welcome to the world, worded

Divine and pristine, uncorrupted. You are

Going to be past the teeny-teeny wishes

Of your youthful years. Nineteen is some

Game, some kind of a peek-a-boo for

Poetry in rallies, the one you join in, go

With to shout it out with your lungs out

The ugly reality of a nation's life,

One defined by cheap fish now inflated

To include egos of presidents and actors,

Crazies all in cahoots with crazed luck.

No, we made the luck, with the votes

And all, with our forgiving hearts,

Unable to whack the child in them,

The impostors and pretenders of country

Love, loves. Pretty soon you will see all.

At twenty you will see the bravado

Of braggarts, politicians, their alias.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili



Our Mortal Dreams, Here They Come

(Another OFW comes home in a coffin, a news item)

In another city, a countryman dies.

A woman caregiver, the wires tell

In words circuituous and fanciful

You never see the dire days of her

Death. It is fall here as you imagine

The delayed lamentations

Of children, mother and kin,

The same scene haunting you so

In your mortal dreams. It is lifted

From Filipinas, the film and fiction,

A fact for overseas workers, this lady

Dying with her fears. She leaps

To her end, she is raped of her song,

Robbed in daylights coming in low

And late, the way the amo came in

To her with the lust of evenings

Named and unnamed. Another Filipina

Dies, another hope comes alive

Sparkling in the deep dark

Of stolen secrets, useless loves.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA


St Basil at Six

(For Rev. Fr. Efren Villanueva, migrant, friend,

and classmate I bumped into in Los Angeles

after 22 years of not meeting up)

Tonite, we tell tall tales of the lies

We learned, lived through all along

This Los Angeles boulevard. We share

The same tales, their titles our hopes,

Their plot the greed of lilac loves

In lavenders and bricks and browns.

Here, in these streets and sidewalks

And pavements we make a pack

With evil without signing up in a blood

Compact. Over tofu and fish and kimchi,

We swap stories, all sorts, spices

In between sipping the soup piping

Hot in our broken hearts. We know

Better now, much better now, we migrants

From pilgrim islands. Lilac ladies,

Lilac men, lilac loves: they all come

In all shapes and sizes and kinds

To pray on stone angels, pray for

Us and then, and then, prey on us.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

St Basil Church, Wilshire, LA


Stealing Time in a Cold Place

I steal time to write poems,

Food to satiate my soul, pencil, paper,

Pocket, this last one ever the pauper's,

Impoverished for pesos, favors, faith,

currencies I need to buy dollars

The politicos of my homeland

Squander to pay off padres,

Compadres, pawns, patrons, fawning

Defendants of all this charade,

This circle of a circus in this

Black comedic clime, country to our

Chaos, begotten of sin and salvation.

I write of our chanting from afar,

On the sullen skies shares sorrow

For sorrow with starving lines, sentences

About magical men dying while bearing

The santo niño of a God in Quiapo.

On this 357 and 2, the Gardena, the Metro,

I steal time to write of my work

To sell my soul, mind, word.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Gardena/Los Angeles, CA



The 357 and 2 are buses plying the Gardena-LA & Gardena-Torrance, CA route. Hey, amigos, I write poems on buses

and on waiting sheds. The poems nag me when I do not write them. It is only when I have written them that I am able to have

my own good share of sleep. Pray tell, how do you call this phenomenon? While I wait for the red light to go green, I survey the possibilities, check on my break, grab the pen and the notebook on the passenger seat and scribble what I can when

the word/s come/s. If I fail in this process, I repeat the word/s in my mind, recite it/them and try writing them again when the traffic stops. So I call this as my own way of stealing time. But is there ever any sane poet?

The Picture Telling All

(Angelo dela Cruz, an OFW, is poised to die.- a news item)

The picture tells all, Angelo.

The masked men, armed with faith,

And their guns are about to snap

Your back and take that as swee good luck.

They might call that too as a passport

To some heavens not found here in America

Nor in the countries where we toil

To pursue the dream we cannot have

At home and in the homeland.

We can only be afraid now

Of the morrow that is not yet come,

One defined by blood, ransomed by blood.

Do we blame your captors for this bad show?

Do we blame the tyrants for their rule

Of law, their rhetoric of pure sorrow?

I see the candles now in your hometown

The poor light for your journey

And the president sheds a tear or two.

It is always this way, Angelo,

This calvary that we carry, the cross

For centuries and centuries too heavy.

In the meantime, our politicos eagle eye

For bribes, their women for cheap loves.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Artesia, CA


Dissecting the Corrupt and Corrupting Consequences of the Conflicts of Nations and Locating the Rizal Alternative to Resolve these Conflicts

Dissecting the Corrupt and Corrupting Consequences of the Conflicts of Nations and Locating the Rizal Alternative to Resolve these Continuing Conflicts

By A. S. Agcaoili

There is a need to dissect the anatomy of conflicts that have become a corrupt and corrupting raison d’etre for many countries, cultures, and civilizations. These conflicts have taken on various forms. There is a long list—-a kind of a callous catalogue of the ways humanity has elaborated its death knell. The list is relentless in its capacity to offer violence and death, famine and deprivation, poverty and injustice: wars, acts of terror, secessionist and revolutionary movements, overt and covert occupations, civilian revolts, genocide, religious conflicts, and nationalist struggles. To locate Jose Rizal in these questions of fatally flawed conflicts of nations is to go back to the sources of his humanitarian and internationalist ideals.

This is a Rizal that saw so much of the collective sufferings and sorrows of peoples and societies even as he witnessed these and personally experienced them in his own country.

This is a Rizal that documented the evils of domination and conquest that was couched in a seemingly naïve, neutral, and non-political terms as this was vended in promotional marketing terms such as "civilizing the natives," "evangelizing the heathens," "manifest destiny of bigger brother nations to care for the small and underdeveloped ones," and "moral obligation to promote democracies." In the earlier days, this was packaged--ribbons and wrappings and the obligatory small card for the greetings--as "God and glory and gold," with God, capital G, as the stress and the point of attack. It was a gospel, alright, and it was "God." But it was a gospel according to the dictates of an imperial program and the "God" was a "God" according to the uses of the conquerors: white and western, powerful and puritanistic, chic and calculating--in effect, a god of the commerce of war, a god of the warlords, and a god of the merchants of wretchedness.

This is a Rizal that saw what it took to fight for a people’s basic freedoms--a fight that took flight and soared in the minds and imagination of the suffering masses. In seeing this, he reinvented the discourse of the fight into a sensible grammar of struggle for and in the name of the people’s liberation from the bondage of injustice and un-freedom.

This is a Rizal that recognized the fire in the passion for a meaningful method to move on with the struggle that promises redemption, a Rizal that realized how the very idea of a struggle moved people and touched their hearts, stirred their spirits, and made them resolve to hold on to their just causes: food and freedom, jobs and justice, land and liberty--dreams that defined their days and desires.

This is a Rizal that saw the infinite possibilities and promise of the idea of a Philippine Revolution that was to be conducted and staged in the name of a long-suffering people, the same idea of a revolt and revolution we see everywhere in all the continents where injustice and inequity are the rules rather than the exception. A philosopher once meditated on "the revolt of the masses"--a revolt that is necessary to renew social relations and put an end to socially built-in, inherited privileges that were reserved for the few. Another one talked of the "dictatorship of the proletariat" that was meant to eradicate the ugly reality of classes that divided peoples and sundered societies.

From here we see what is wrong--we witness the workings of a wrong that, when not righted and when it becomes "the way things are," when it becomes such that it is a commonplace--it becomes a disconnect that breeds social illness, a "dis-ease," "a social cancer," one in which even the suave touching brings about pain and discomfort. This is the context of "noli me tangere" that morphs into a mantra: "touch me not," the mantra demanding in the end a filibuster.

But we cannot allow the cancer--the conflict of peoples, the conflict of societies, the conflict of nations--to spread. Within the lens of interconnectedness of all beings and of all life, within the frame of a world that is not "an island unto itself," and within the perspective that forces us to sit down together in that bargaining table so that the fundamental issues on what makes sense to all of mankind could be addressed, there is no such thing as the force and power of conflict as the premise for making human and international understanding to be possible. We are thus called into a restatement of our parameters for the conflicts to be resolved. The process to doing that is truthfulness--and truthfulness demands of us a sensitivity to the dictates of a clear and committed conscience, one that is not self-serving but gracious, tolerant, humane.

It takes a critical consciousness to arrive at this kind of a conscience, a mindset that is essentially grounded on a broad understanding of the dynamic of cultures and societies, an understanding of the complex and complicated nature of power and politics, and the borderless reach of capital and its effects--not to mention the subtle projects of empires to control the world and its institutions.

This kind of a critical consciousness makes us see the world as it is: with its truths and falsities, with its global drama of power and powerlessness, with its higher yearning for that which renews in order to transcend the banal and the unimportant. In many references to education and that capacity of the mind to grasp the essentials, Rizal, in his works as well as in his actions, moved towards embracing warmly this critical consciousness as an antidote to conflict, as the panacea to the question of a bloody resolution of misunderstandings, as an alternative to a fierce adherence to the barrel of a gun and the bullet. In saying this, we are not discounting other alternatives to resolving war and injustice. We are not making a franchise of the word that salves and saves. When the Philippine Revolution was in its birth throes--when the Kataas-taasang Kagalang-galangang Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan under Andres Bonifacio was rallying for that final solution to the Spanish colonization problem and was calling out to Jose Rizal for his imprimatur, Rizal sent out a precaution and prescription to what could be done at that time. Rizal was bogged down by a number of issues: (a) how prepared were the filibusters in terms of understanding fully what sacrifices the struggle demanded and (b) how prepared were they in terms of the logic and logistics of war--materiel and money and foreign assistance from nations that understood the meaning of giving the gift of freedom to other nations. We see here a scenario of thought that builds on both reason and passion, seeing things objectively and yet, with the ember of emotion pulsing fire and pulsating with life, these things that are not right are subjected to scrutiny and then, the enlightened actors and agents commit themselves to their correction in order to allow truth and beauty and justice to reign once again. Rizal saw no other way to propose social justice as the only real remedy to the conflicts of nation—and to the conflicts within nations. Rizal saw that the naming of the problem has to be done with that rite of courage of spelling out the inequities and the institutions that support these inequities. Rizal saw of the urgency of calling the violence from these inequities as violence and not love.

Seen thus in these lights, the solution to conflicts is not in the running away from the moral obligation to unearth their root causes and in adopting a certain double entendre language of courtesy and politeness--a kind of a diplomatic dialect designed and calculated to not to hurt the feelings of the powerful perpetrators of these conflicts.

Wars, the United Nations Constitution holds, begin in the minds of men. Before wars become a full scale show of force--before they become the language of might, before they become a social drama of the tragic that they are and that present as exhibits, act by act, the vanquished and the victors--they are first and foremost some forms of consciousness. They are some forms of an idealization of some fiercely guarded positions in reference to a conflicted issue. They are concepts with their own display of blood and gore, of hatred and annihilation, of pulverizing the enemy, of reducing them to smithereens. They are mindsets that call for actions whose moral worth may be questionable, their legitimacy one of empty rhetoric and shallow rationalizations by those who call the shots, who hold the purse to the financing of profitable wastage of lives and limbs, of the irreversible destruction of the citadels of civilizations and cathedrals of faith, and the profiteering that comes from investing on people’s fears and anguish. The moral here is that the pretentious claim to that which good is immoral. The moral here is that the conflicts of nations--the conflicts that bring about unnecessary wars--is a pointless exercise. The point--if there is a point at all--in the conflicts of nations is that it is the ultimately pointless act, the ultimate vacuity that must be unmasked at once.

The road to the resolution of conflicts is one in which reason and its possibilities are played out to the full--a reason that is tempered by passion for that which is just, fair, and true. The only road, thus to end all these corrupt and corrupting conflicts is the road to peace: the road to speech, the road to dialogue, the road to language, the road to discourse--in short, that road that we draw up with sincerity and honesty and transparency, the road that takes in all the cost of war, the accounting of our dreams, the covenant to making it possible for man and his world to become a slice of the eternal.

This road is not easy. We are forced to take the high road with its gusty winds and dust storms that make us uneasy in the journey. It makes us take stock of what we have got--the will to do it; the belief that this can be done; the courage to innovate, invent, and reinvent our methodologies and procedures; and the boldness to define and redefine our terms of engagement and negotiation. But there is no wavering here--only that will to succeed--because we cannot afford to fail. This idea of pursuing what critical consciousness dictates and demands is what stirred Rizal into rethinking the means and methods of resolving the issues that attend to the social conflicts of his time. This reasoned rethinking demands daring--but daring we must give in order to allow peace to come about, flower, flourish, and bloom. For here, life is at stake--and there is no substitute to life. And there are no willing proxies in death.

The Rizal alternative--one of reasoned discourse, one of a dialogical understanding of the healing promises of peaceful remedies, one that takes into account the potency and potential of naming the conflicts and draw from there the humane and life-affirming remedies--is one of the many alternatives that we can explore for its promise of infinite possibilities, one that can inform us profoundly, and one that can shape the solutions for what they are supposed to be: long-lasting solutions because they strike at the core of conflicts and not at their camouflages.


December 19, 2004

Nightfall in Indianapolis, One

(For Moustafa, and then, for Salve)

Lovers come and go like predawn lights

In Indiana, past the Parthenon of a new

And renewed love, this last one a gift,

God-given, a reward for coming to grief.

But the beloved stays, lingers a little

Longer to entwine with the sadnesses

Of beds, linens, pillows, cares

All awaiting coupling with the alien,

Strange beasts of our privileged

Life stories pulsing with hopes,

Pulsating with nightfalls, dreams,

Gyrating, radiating with sunsets,

The orange of young eves,

The green of luscious lawns

Surrounding the home of your heart

Come alive, your with her,

She with you in that one

Ultimate call for song,

You and the belowed dueting

In the chorus of forms.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Los Angeles, CA


Free for All, This Sideshow

Free for all,

this sideshow.

You take the ticket

for entrances and no exit,

the price cut

to a third





is born in a manger.

A show of no-force,

this farce, a.k.a.

happy holidays

the terrorists

the capitalists

the religionists

the clerics

have either vowed

to reject or


as in centuries past

of victory or

of defeat.

In some ways, this is called

Domination, capital D.

Or another form

of covert colonization

of the mind, capital C.

Or that capital

of all the capitals

you can think of,

capital C:

Capitalism gone haywire,

brainless, mindless.





All the adjectives

you can think of

to account

this grammar of greed,

this cadence of cold conceit,

years and years

of the same greed,

the same conceit,

all the time in frenzy,

the beat in allegro,

the rush in andante.

This is what happens

when the time of our life

loses its heart

and its spirit

goes kaput,

is gone,


It becomes

a new big D, dominant or

a new big C, capitalist.

And so we lose heart.

We cannot speak

of forgetting


There is no such

when the soul

is somewhere else,

with the gusts in the west,

with the surf riding high

on the balmy waters

and the air is a breeze

soothing you.

For free.

For a fee you speak

of going home to partake

of ricecakes and the reasons

for the remotest of possibilies

of either celebrating

or just sleeping it off.

The festive seasons

are the timeliest

for the show.

There are the bonuses,

a jacking up of payslips

merry morale

for the shopkeepers

to rake it all

to have all of it

in beribboned boxes

of sweet nothingness.

You go through

that, for its force

of a farce, a yearend

ceremony of lost loves.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dec. 18, 2004

Di Pa Huling Huntahan Sa Konggreso Ng Mga Masaklap na Kapalaran Sa Aking Bayan

Di ito ang huling huntahan

sa konggreso ng ating

masaklap na kapalaran.

Mamamayan tayo

sa lipunan

ng ating buhay

na pananabik

sa katarungan

ng mga nakakasapat

na pakinabang

sa hapag-kainan

ng kung ano ang angkop

para sa mga karaingan,

sa katuparan ng pangarap

para sa isang masaganang

kainang di lang iilan

ang dumidighay pagkatapos

kundi tayong lahat,

dating mga pinipi ng wikang makapangyarihan,

dating mga biningi ng tinig na nakakapanlumo,

dating mga pinilay ng mga utos ng mga hari

dating mga binulag ng mga eksena ng karangyaan

na ngayon ay kasama sa mga sabayang paghalakhak,

buo at nambubuhay ng mga kalamnang pagal


sa pagdiriwang

ng mga pagdiriwang

na kasali tayo, kasalo, kasama.

Kahit sabihin nating namayapa na

ang mga imahinasyon tungkol

sa pagbabalik ng mga naghahanap

ng hustisya sa padaya ng pagilian,

kahit sabihin natin na ang katuparan

ng mga ligaw na alalahanin

ay nasa ataul na ngayon at pinagmimisahan

ng mga masang ang alam ay ang orasyon

sa panlipunang katarungan,

kahit ngayon ay bubusugin ka

ng mga akto sa sinehan

o sa pelikula ng kamangmangan,

kahit sa pagpipila-pila

ng mga panaginip natin

ay patutungo tayo sa malawak

na altar ng mga bagong kalungkutan

sa bayan

tulad ng mga lungkot

sa mga panaginip na niraransom

o ng mga kabayang binibihag

ng mga masaganang handaan

para sa mga anak at mga anak

ng bayan,

kahit ngayon ay sasamahan natin

ang namayapang panaginip

sa kanyang huling hantungan

sa musoleo ng siglo-siglong


sasabihin natin sa ating mga sarili:

Huhusgahan natin ang mga mababangis

na hangin at madarang na araw.

Bibigkasin natin itong sentensya

ng lahat ng mga sentensiyang

noon pa sana natin naisip,

isinagawa, pinangalanan,

ginawang pinal na pangungusap upang

maging puso ng ating pansamantalang


Hindi pa ito ang huling huntahan

sa konggreso ng ating masaklap

na kapalaran.

Hahanapin natin ang huling huntahan

sa mga bukal ng ating pagtangis.

Dudukalin natin ang katubusan

sa mga parang at mga gabing

nagsisilang ng kapayapaan

sa dulang at sa himlayan.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dis. 18, 2004

Pagparintumengennak ti Daniw

Pagparintumengennak ti daniw.

Ta ti daniw ket maysa met nga ubbog

ni ayat a pagkurnuan

dagiti kasamekan ken kapanagan

iti barukong.

Briaten ti daniw dagiti aglulusiaw

nga urat dagiti takiag iti uniberso ni pintas,

dagitay urat a makipagsipungtuan

kadagiti litania ti naibabawi a paraiso

iti man bannawag wenno iti kidem

a rabii, kadagiti angin a sumarut

iti rupa ti naumbi a bulan, kannag

wenno simmagaysay, agpapauyo

wenno darudar kas iti panagdarudar

dagiti maibinggas a balikas

nga orasion kadagiti agpatnag a kararag

wenno bunar a mangisagut iti sam-it

wenno naimbag a gasat

wenno ti anak ti diablo

nga alumpipinig iti nakem, sumilud

a di agpakpakada, mangibati iti letteg

iti lukong ti palad wenno sangi wenno teltel,

sugat nga agkitebkiteb,

di aglunit uray no mano

nga abrakadabra kadagiti paulo,

wenno rima wenno panagiballatek

kadagiti padas a naipatarus

kadagiti mababain a linia

kadagiti mangibabain a panagsalawasaw

kadagiti pakaibabainan a panagtabbaw

kadagiti kababain a panagtarabitab.

Pagparintumengannak ti daniw.

Kadagiti ulimek iti babaet dagiti ariangga

a parnuayen ti buteng kadagiti binatog

dagiti nakain-inaka a sao, sadiay a tumrarong

dagiti natitirad a bantay, agkikibinda

a mangitunda iti mannaniw

iti puseg ti baybay

iti puseg dagiti sagrado a darikmat

iti puseg dagiti wawaig ken bubon

a partuaten ti managdakiwas a turay

dagiti maikanatad a balikas

dagiti umiso a balikas

dagiti napudno a balikas

dagiti nabileg a balikas

a naynay a makapaadda kadagiti amin

nga awan pay iti panunot wenno iti rikna,

daytay panunot a managpili iti pagsasao

daytay rikna a nakusim wenno manglanglangan,

saan a mangipauneg iti labatiba wenno pagpurga

saan met a sumimsim wenno tumilmon iti ling-et

wenno katay wenno telkak wenno tupra

a pangpapigket iti rikepan a sobre ni rugso

a para kadagiti isu amin a makabiag

a para kadagiti isu amin a mangpakulaidag iti laladot

a para kadagiti isu amin a mangriing iti turog.

Pagparintumengennak ti daniw.

Iti kasta, inaldaw a sangalek dialogo

ni derrep, daytay panangibinggas

iti estranghero nga an-anek-ek:

ti maipapan iti puli dagiti essem

ti maipapan iti tribo dagiti anag

ti maipapan iti ili dagiti bugas

ti maipapan iti gimong dagiti kaipapan

ti maipapan iti pagilian dagiti protesta

dagiti amin a mabalin nga yebkas

wenno isao wenno isawang

wenno ikur-it kadagiti ulimek dagiti ulimek

a pakapunnuan amin a kurang ken pagkurangan

a pakatungpalan amin a kari ken kaikarian

a pagaddaan amin nga awan ken kinaawan

a siuman dagiti palso ken nalaad

a kamalala dagiti mailaklako a rigat.

Pagparintumengennak ti daniw.

Iti panagtamed, awatek ti kired

iti makaisalakan a palpaliiw.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Las Vegas, Nevada

Dis. 16, 2004

Pimmusayen ti Presidente ti Republika Dagiti Pobre


Patgen a babaknang:

Ita a panagligsay

ti katengngaan ti sipnget,

pimmusayen ti presidentemi,

daytay pangulomi,

dakami a makipagili

iti republika dagiti pobre,

republikami nga agmirmiraut

iti saluyot wenno marunggay

a pammarakubaken a yabraw

kadagiti tagainep iti nakararagan

a pammigat, ti di nalisayan

a pangngaldaw,

ti di nagkiraos a pangrabii,

dakami a mabisbisinan

iti kalinlinay nga inapuy

wenno hustisia

iti masida iti dulang

dakami a mawaw

iti danum ti kappia

iti antigo a gimong

dagiti mannanakaw,

aduda a duog

a mannanakaw,

iti turay

wenno kalkalsada,

dagiti birkog

a heneral dagiti amin a butengmi

a kolonel dagiti amin a duaduami

a kapitan dagiti amin a panagsagabami

a teniente dagiti amin a panaganusmi.


Pimmusayen ti presidente ti republika

dagiti amin nga ar-ararawmi,

daytay dadaulomi iti pantasia

dagiti dimi mabilang a pannakasubbot

kadagiti amin a sukir ken sairo,

siririingkami wenno nargaan iti turog.

Sumuknalkaminto iti massayag

dagiti adu a namnamami,

ti adu a panangibabaet kadakami

ti presidente dagiti duayyami.

Sumuknalkaminto, dakami a dungrit,

dakami a mukatmukat, dakami a bilbilokan,

dakami a naangdod ken naangot,

dakami nga agdigdigos iti ling-et

dakami nga agkape iti agsaraaw a bagas

wenno mais, wenno kinirog a barako

a tedtedda dagiti adda iti ballasiw-taaw,

dakami nga aglauya iti paragpag ti ikan

a sushida idiay Makati wenno Japan,

dakami nga agsigang iti ulo

ti udang, inkaasi

ti bugbugian a bagi,

kinamaron rebosado

dagiti ari-ari

ken agin-aari

idiay Paris

wenno Aparri.


a mapan sumuknal,

dakami a makipagili

iti republika dagiti pobre

dakami nga agam-amlid

ta nangina ti sabon

ta nangina ti danum

ta nangina ti sabidong

a pagsamal koma no mabalin

wenno pangpatibong

kadagiti baliodong

isuda nga uloulo

ti amin a kinalanggong.

Sakasakakaminto a sumuknal

tapno mariknami ti lamiis

ti marmol a datar,

daytay nakasilsilap

a pagiladan dagiti guduagudua a dios

wenno baddekan dagiti nalamuyot a sakada

wenno pagulanganto dagiti ubbingmi

a mangisunonto iti naidasay a presidente

a mangipatakderto iti templo dagiti mamati

a mangirakurakto iti kinapudno

dagiti eksena ti panangisalakan

kadagiti amin a marigrigat

amin a maidaddadanes

amin a maikuskuspil

amin a mapapaidaman

amin a makuskusit

amin a maaw-awanan.


Sumuknalkaminto iti presidente

dagiti amin a kalbariomi.

Makipilakaminto iti pila

dagiti amin a sumuknal,

babaknang wenno agimbabaknang,

nagbangbanglo wenno nabangsit,

mamati iti kinapresidente

ti pimmusay wenno saan.

Kalpasan ti pananglusaklusakmi

iti panaglidliday

ti maysa pay a babai,

diminton bibiangan

dagiti petalo iti korona ti natay,

dagitay sabsabong a nangina

ken napusaksak,

nangina ta napusaksak,

puraw nga orkidia

nalabaga nga anturium

ken berde a pakpako,

amin dagitoy a bisti iti ipupusay,

amin dagitoy nga aggapu

iti panagulser ti bagismi kas ti isipmi,

ayna, dinto inggaan ti ungetmi.

Pirsapirsayenminto amin a pakalaglagipan

ti pannakapaay dagiti ar-arawmi,

ti pannakakeltay dagiti ar-arapaapmi.

Pimmusayen ti presidente

ti republika dagiti pobre.

Awan ta awan sa lattan ti namnamami.


Isu ngarud, kakabsat a babaknang,

umaykayo met, a, sumuknal,

dakayo nga aglablabonan, dakayo

a presidente dagiti parparapo

a senador dagiti panaginkukuna

a diputado dagiti panagindidi

a gobernador dagiti panagindadalus

iti ima wenno iti aramid,

umaykayo ta imatanganyo

ti maikatlo nga aldaw

ti aldaw ti panangungar

dagiti an-anib,

dagiti intabonda nga an-anting

dagiti presidente nga aginlalaing.

Dagiti nagsurat a siraraem,

Dakami a saanen a siraraem kadakayo,

dakami amin a pobre, makipagili

iti republika ti pimmusayen

a presidente, republikami,

dakami amin a tinallikudan ti kari.

Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Torrance, CA

Dis. 17, 2004