Scavenging for Something to Die Of

MANILA, Philippiness -- A Hong Kong-based migrant workers’ group appealed to the government on Tuesday to do something about 50 Filipino workers reduced to scavenging garbage in Kuwait after being duped by their employer. The overseas Filipino workers, according to the Asia Pacific Migrants Mission, have resorted to eating expired foodstuff and scavenging sellable items from waste bins just to survive. J. Aning, Inquirer, 2/19/08

The image is picture perfect,
an icon to what have we become.
Fifty overseas Filipino workers
are in Kuwait awaiting
for the verdict of death
to, yes, for them to gon on living
like birds and beasts, minus
some adage from the gospels.
No, you cannot say about
the lilies in their sparkling light,
light upon light on their blades,
their petals the dew of grace
not this deceit that comes
to them as well as to us
everyday, a lie like this turns
up on our plates, and we eat
it all to appease what needs
to be appeased: the eyes
for not having known what
a good meal looks like
the taste buds for the onset
of amnesia on what savor
and delight are
the nose for going the way
of the ignorant men in the land
who do not know the difference
between rottenness and sincerity
to what justice is. And so in Hongkong,
we deploy all that strength we need
to fight back the hunger.
The trash bins come aplenty
in this land of a failed promise.
There are no expiration dates
for the energy needing replenishment
or is there a crime
in eating what other people
had thrown away to feed
their regrets?
In the homeland, we have always
been scavenging for truth
in the wastes of thieves.
There is nothing new here
except to remind ourselves
of the honor among the countrys
hypocrites: presidents who do not
know the meaning of greed but avarice
of vice presidents who mouth platitudes
for the electorates
of senators who look for the longevity
of their uselessness
of representatives who go running
after their pork barrels
and cabinet met who take lying
as the first virtue among the potentates.

Fifty of them, and more.
This is not news, we know.
It has come upon us for so long,
this dishonor we have heaped upon
our people who know what hunger means
without being told.

A Solver Agcaoiili
Hon, HI
Feb 19/08

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