2nd Prize, 2010 San Agustin Writers Workshop Poetry Competition, English Category
(To the victims of the 2009 Maguindanao massacre,
be they remembered)
And the Gods asked,
What do martyrs do
when struck by thunder?
We walk alone,
alone over the ocean’s slumber
guided by a thousand lights
reflected on black water.
Only the waves
serve as our pathway
on our flight to the stars
in the endless horizon.
Our feet held afloat
in the absence of all weight and gravity
just like the dead fishes
floating soundly at sea.
From the bloodstains we have left
to the wounds and bullets in our flesh,
we are cleansed by the ocean’s salt
freed from all evils of this earth.
Human as we are,
we have been betrayed,
abandoned and forgotten by the promises
of this land we’ve once believed in.
As the call to serve the people
we have answered,
the call to face eternity
now awaits us.