Posts Tagged music

Appropriating Redemption.

What I’m saying here is not, I agree, poetry,   
as poems should be written rarely and reluctantly,   
under unbearable duress and only with the hope   
that good spirits, not evil ones, choose us for their instrument.
-Ars Poetica, Czeslaw Milosz

October 18

It was exactly on a day like this when you came down from the sky. The clouds were grey, with a hint of orange, and some streaks of blue. There were pocket storms all over you, there were small circles for thunder, lightning, torrid rains, and raging winds. Your body is littered with leaves, broken branches of unknown trees. On your feet is a swollen river.  Your knees assumed landslides, between your legs a typhoon slowly gathers strength, and gave havoc immediately above your hips.  Strangely you hand summoned a different season, winter in an unprecedented coldness.

I’m trying to re-imagine you. Your hair brown as a river, with curls like open-sea-waves has metallic yellow ribbon, with a real yellow butterfly roosting on it, desperately seeking  succulence. Your hair like rain, fell down until a few inches below your shoulder. The bag you carry on your back carried your burden in return. You told me the half-moon under your eyes were not borne from lunacy, sleeplessness has its own way of claiming your body,  that’s why that moon, you say, is in constant eclipse.

I looked down on your palm, it looked like it has been ravaged by wars, the lines were scarred, it has wounds, it doesn’t close easily, and is wet with tears. Your palm looked like a different continent altogether, forced to surrender, a broken republic.

February 16

I heard your heart caved-in.

You went to the bathroom, and cleaned the floor like you always do, i’m sure you were smirking in front of the mirror after seeing those little green molds silently starting a colony.

I’ve been away for 7 years. In those years i am always in some places that most of the times i didn’t bother to share. I almost died in one of the hospitals in an island across where you’ve been, those were psychedelic days, in high experiment, as if my budget is limitless as the string that held the kite back from reaching the blue above.

I’ve been communing with the sea, but never told you of the secrets i gathered from hermit crabs, from fireflies inhabiting mangrove nations. The wind has its own evening secrets, when the waters glow, the air around assembles to impregnate the churning below.

I never told you what happened when i went up there where guns grew wings.  Time moved around in slow-motion, in mud-pace. I spoke of the trees, one night  my voice rustled like thousand leaves, and trembled as if i’m a coconut tree about to give-up the bulging greens and oranges up my bosom. Sometimes i croaked like the frog under the rain, demanding reforms for the land that i’ve been skipping. Above, in that place, the earth becomes liquid under my feet.

I ate lamb stew i found under the stairs of your dreams.

Did i tell about my moving closer to piers of different countries? How i just shook my hand like a preacher, and moved my eyes to wink, to get my fair share of love near train stations, airports, and movie houses?

I didn’t get the chance to tell all of these, because i can’t be still. The familiar became unfamiliar.

I saw you again surrounded by loss, tubes going in and out of your mouth, machines musically disturbing beside you, and i touch your hands, your feet, your shoulder, and your forehead. You never opened your eyes again, nor your mouth, and something in me choked.

Then the coldness came.

Then i silently recalled our stories together as if they are photographs, slowly flipping through pages, from black and white to colors.

Pa, i spoke to you.

My breathing clots on my chest.

The secret of the Great Stories is that they have no secrets. The Great Stories are the ones you have heard and want to hear again. The ones you can enter anywhere and inhabit comfortably.

-Arundhati Roy

Listen to me.

Who have been walking with their shoes, bloodied and soiled by the faith of redemption. Who plunged themselves to the labels of excesses, and cry in silent for the hunger you felt is more than what is being sold in street corners.

Didn’t you lament on romances that got wasted by love in the vegetable kingdoms, where rats infests to feed their young somewhere hidden in the stench of the sewers.

Didn’t you talked about silence, and threw every single watches you own to the roof of houses you passed by every night you got yourself in one of those situations, that getting drunk is not just because of alcohol but by the smell of bodies charging against each other?  swear that you will submit to the eternity of time. Aren’t you noisy with this kind of silence? and your songs are gibberish.

Aren’t your knees became callous because you kneel in every chance there’s a cathedral in your mind and in every body else’s mind, and then you get shoved from behind, because all of these are prescribed by the preachers in glossy suits, and gel elated hairs.


I am with you if you’ll jump up from the 10th floor of your dreaming and fall splendidly voiceless.

I am with you when you murder the language that will creep from the shadows of your wants.

I am with you when you berate the tv for misleading us with cartoon shows and write speeches to flood newsrooms of naked skeletons.

I will be with you when we will shove down our poetics to the throats and asses of those who have been wielding their names as if they own every mad house of the cities that we’ve been to.

This is where i will settle, in my dreams where i saw you with skinny legions, with eyes stretched back as far as china, and breathe-in, deep like it’s an unending well, without the bonanzas of wealth.

We will settle here, and we will kiss until we are drown in our own embrace, under the Technicolor evening, we will walk around and name every nameless, we will knock on their doors and sleep on their beds.

Soon we will fade in discontent.


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Our Days of Nimbus

to where?

I am not done yet.

Inside me is like a room with dark drapes drawn across a bright day, it’s a sealed place where creatures who crawl, and fly cannot enter. In the middle is a coffee table, with books half consumed by fire, litters the left edge, then there’s a pencil over papers crowded with scribbles and other manuscripts. There’s supposed to be an ashtray not to catch what is left from cigarettes but to contain the ashes of burnt leftover love.

On the left is a small wardrobe, five steps from the coffee table a red rug starts to lead you to where my clothes are being kept, in snaking diagonal formation is a sentence “here meals are rehearsed from your memory”. You’ll just have to acquaint yourself to seeing things in the dark and you’ll see shirts, long sleeves, jeans, socks, under wears, pants, slippers, bags, bed sheets, towels, notebooks, pens, shoes, pillow cases, and to the delight of the gloomy-weather-worshipper is a sun block, mascara, tanning lotion, and lip balms – sometimes these are essential, who would know the ozone would want to open itself bigger and bigger?  Tacked on the wardrobe is the list of things that are sent out for laundry, and some little instructions how to wash them. Standing on top encased in glass is a battery powered latex  laser sword with an instruction “for alien invasion only”. Think, but don’t think too much, i don’t want you to get any idea, how things started and how it will move from here.

Perpendicular to this is a little bed, big enough to accommodate strangers that are lost,  this may be a quaint room but it still needs company. The sheets covering my bed is soft, with pillows that allows you to bury your head every night when dreams are too much to contain, when you grind your teeth, and talk before going deeper to dreamscapes.

Littering around my room are luggage; all sort of cases, and mountain bags, you know i can leave anytime i want. On the ceiling are lizards, made me think that they are couples, i always think of them as collectors of stories that happened inside my room. The stories might be too much for them, as yesterday i found a third one, and another spider on the corner. They need to have more and more allies, now they need cobwebs to capture despair that the lovely reptiles failed to catch. They capture dreams and re-dreamed them.

Outside is a veranda overlooking the river village, and where the river village looked back. the veranda made of wood creaks in protest every time i’m out to survey possible escape routes. A few meters below, before reaching the river is a minefield of sadness, you can see wilting flowers, dead animals among them, soiled clothes sticking out of the earth, a punctured tire, rotting boats, a broken tv, a spectacle, a wig, a colony of rats, the stench of decay, and a butterfly. it came to me one night and settled in my stomach, that every time we converse and every time i hear your stilettos echoing in the alley outside my door, the butterfly would convulse inside and i am reduced to worldlessness in your presence, everything in me crumbled like a poorly baked chiffon cake.

i saw you and then i think of delayed breakfast, fried eggs, toast cut in neat little squares, salt and pepper, cinnamon,  coffee with milk and brown sugar, delectable morning, and i think of hunger, because i am of the world that doesn’t have words for everything, my mouth doesn’t open to received gifts of nourishment, the joys of nibbling your crisp laughter, the glory of tasting the saltiness of your sweat, and the earth on your body. the high-heels calling my attention, the feet, the map before reaching the knees, and the hem of your dress, a curtain call for archers to bend their body, and words to keep the hollow of your form. That tiny curving nails set to abolish the repetition of verses coming from all direction, that tender arm is capable of doing all that is violent, tearing all that intrudes your territory, sending to martyrdom thirst and hunger, the vagabond distraction becoming still. You open roads against the shadow.

Directly under my bed is a secret passageway, where exit is the only thing allowed.


The purpose of poetry is to remind us
how difficult it is to remain just one person,
for our house is open, there are no keys in the doors,
and invisible guests come in and out at will.
-Czeslaw Milosz

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Two of us sending postcards
Writing letters
On my wall

-The Beatles

I never thought that i will be having this sort of vision that i can actually hold mid way to where i am supposed to be today.  One that has real clothes, real scent, and one whose laughter reverberated long after it is gone, one whose sweats can actually crawl out of foreheads and one that you can actually wipe.

Unlike other things that are meticulously planned  way ahead of time – starting with appropriate time, places that leaves a lot of impressions that’s usually cliché, the kind of food to eat, how to position spoons and forks, what comes before and after everything, specific  gestures, and specific disposition. All of these are rehearsed over and over again. However this is predictable and boring. anything planned ahead is boring, to a certain extent.  the aesthetics of being spontaneous presupposes the thinking self according to Descartes, it is not from the modern world but came way ahead before humanity discovered correlation between slow and fast, of departures and arrivals, of risking big and bigger.

It is more natural for me to go without plans and develop directions and consensus along the way. considerations are always welcome, like how weather behaves, i am erratic as always.  I revolved around the belief that characters should not be under duress, it should have time to reveal itself.

I always give myself time to surrender and fall by allowing gravity to overwhelm me. To spare myself from other sickness – I try not to think too much, and be misconstrued along the way, as if there is only one truth for everything out there – regardless where we embarked, regardless of the route we took, we will end up somewhere the living and the dead converge and share spaces.

One of  the many reasons why i kept an umbrella is to project resiliency, to show as if i’m prepared, to perhaps have the last laugh also. there’s some sort of comfort to walk under an umbrella, there’s some sort of music made when rain would start to tick-tack on the cloth on the makeshift roof just an inch from my head. i too love the idea how an umbrella can delay burning too, and that wilting can come later.

Shot like a flower in the dance

-Charles Bukowski


I always love basking under the sun, i want the burning to happen equitably over my skin, i am from the equator, and my words are fiery, everywhere my stares fall, tongues of the motherland will become infectious with fire. However my world is also water, i am fluid, i extinguish fires. like water  i am unpredictable, unstoppable to a certain extent, and continuous, and consistent, and persistent.  Sun may reclaim me, but i will return over and over again and fall as rain.

Like what happened before with my decisions – i do them with certainty.  then settle with uncertainty following  my decisions. these are the necessary contradictions that i need.

That way i am good at being misconstrued, that way everything in me is needed with all it’s darkness and brightness, it’s lightness and heaviness.

Today, i like how the sun presented itself. Today i like the way how you came and stretched your arms. today i like the way how shameless i am. today i like all the smudges, the rice on your hair, and the sweats all over our body. as much as i want to measure everything with  steps and get lost somewhere, the limitation with being random, unless in total surrender, it is caught somewhere with  pre-arrangement.

Randomness is poetry.

Oh well.

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