Tula(la)

Tulala na naman ang indak ng hangin

Sumasalimbay, dumadausdos sa gitna ng lansangang-bitin.

Tulala rin ang pag-awit ng mga ibong Martin

Pautal-utal, umuusal ang taghoy nilang tugtugin.

Tulala rin kahit na ang pagsukob ng gabi at dilim

Nahuhuli, minsa’y nagniningas ang taglay nitong lagim 

Tulala rin ang pagkislap ng mga bituin

Wasak, nawawala ang aliw-iw ng kanilang pagningning.

Tulala ang lahat — hudyat ng iyong pagdating.

Thoughts in bed

The call of sweet slumber hardly reaches me these past few days. I would lie down because it is time to sleep. My body cuddles in the comforts of a tender bed, cotton bedsheet and soft pillows. I allure myself with nature sleep-inducing sounds. I would close my eyes and think of sleep. However, that is how far it goes. My mind just pretends it is asleep but fully aware; extending itself to memories trapped in the outskirts of my brain, looking back at embarassing moments, reminiscing the times I felt regret, and replaying the sad events again and again. I would relive event of my life in sadness, and to some extent, in gasps of cries. I get out of the room and lock myself inside the toilet, turn the faucet open and let out silent sobs. This would continue until the break of dawn. I know there is something wrong inside of me that keeps on pushing outwards to reveal itself and be known. I also know I am not clinically depressed. I just do not fall into that category; falling short from depression and verging on severe anxiety. I just safely assume that I am in a crisis.

Life outrage

I am in a position where I want to become everything and the consequence of not achieving everything results into failure. The essense of this is not just a personal feeling of disappointment and loss, not just the inability to make my family proud, not just the incapability to be successful in my field but failure in living our short life to the fullest. The adamant societal construct that we are taught is that we should study hard so we can be successful later in life. We lend a quarter of our life in study, half into work and the remaining quarter in retirement; to savor the money we earned and enjoy the remaining years of our life to relax. Aren’t we allowed to enjoy life while we are at it? Aren’t we supposed to rejoice present?

Inner Chaos

It hits suddenly. The other day, when the night was cradling upon the departing day, we were on the old but generous table. The sturdy spoons and forks danced as they clinked on the filled plates appeasing more our mirthful countenances. As I look towards the food mixed merrily on my spoon, it hit me. I stopped. The food in front of me became gray. The want to satisfy my appetite with a scrumptious meal vanished. A sudden sting on the pit of my stomach appeared and transformed into an ocean of butterflies rifting on the bounds of my abdomen, creating an angry storm, and heaving waves of food outwards. It didn’t stop there. The sting appeared somewhere in my brain; clouding every sense of perception, corrupting everything to gray, making everything bland. A general feeling of disorder.

Recording the Present (2 of 3)

~Just give me til then to give up the fight. And I will give up the fight…~

He drove past the café through the long and silent university neighborhood. The car moved swiftly after each building, leaving no marks on the road.

‘It was horrible.’ I started.

He just raised his right brow and then nodded. Even without those acknowledgements, I’d still continue.

‘I just needed a slap in the face. It’s all I needed. Just one.’

‘Stupid.’ He replied. ‘Do you even think? You knew it was gonna happen but still, you insisted on meeting him.’

‘I needed, I needed an affirmation that, that was the definite end.’ I cried.

I grabbed my legs, setting it on the seat and my head on my knees.

‘I knew what’s gonna happen. I just wanted to hear it out loud. I made it as a wake-up call, for me not to be stupid again.’ I hardly said between sobs. ‘I knew he’s gonna say that I am a liar, a big fat crazy liar.’

Then he hit the brakes. The car was in a sudden stop,  screeching-sound scattered all over the place and smoke started to form beneath the wheels.

He grabbed me. I was enclosed in his embrace.

He murmured something and then kissed my forehead.

With all the shock and confusion, all I noticed was the music being on a continuos single loop play and didn’t hear what he said.

~Coz I can’t make you love me, if you don’t. You can’t make your heart feel something that it won’t…~

3… 2… 1… The music faded out. His words finally became audible.

‘You have me.’

Recording the present (1 of 3)

He hugged me.

With his arms wrapped around my shaking body, he looked around scanning for a familiar face. A face he was certain that caused my trembling.

‘Where is he?’ he said.

I didn’t bother to answer not because of the room full of eyes preying upon us but what he might do. 

‘I know he’s here. Now, tell me.’ he held me tighter.

I didn’t answer. Still embraced, I started to move towards the entrance but my feet failed me halfway. Luckily, Tristan was there to help me.

‘I am telling you, we are not going anywhere unless I get to talk to Calvin.’ he said while propping me more close to him. He said Calvin’s name like he knew him.

‘No, I am not telling you who or where he is. I and Calvin had more than enough conversation this night than we had for the past five months so let’s go.’ I said.

We moved across the cafeteria while the audience of our little drama earlier were watching. They saw and heard everything that Calvin did and, oh yes, including what he said. I wanted to get out of the place to reach for fresh air and to break away from the drama that happened earlier.

We continued to stride for the front door. Outside, we stopped at the front of a burgundy sedan and I reached for the keys in my pocket.

‘Do you know how to drive?’ I propped my keys towards Tristan.

‘No, my mother didn’t teach me yet.’ he laughed.

‘Oh, your mother again. You always use that mother joke.’

‘I love my mother, you know.’ he bursted out another laugh.

‘And oh, why are you here in—‘

‘I was looking around the place.’ he didn’t let me finish. ‘And I saw you standing in the middle of the cafeteria trembling and barely moving towards the front door. AND the look in your face, I remembered what you said last time about meeting up with him.’

‘What?’ I said, remembering the dinners we had together. ‘Oh yes, that one. Now, let’s go.’ I threw towards him the car keys. 

He smiled and helped me sit on the front seat.

He closed the door and ran towards the driver’s seat.

The engine started and the stereo played my favorite song.

 ~Morning will come and I’ll do what’s right.~

Dream of Reality

There was nothing more I could detest than what had just happened.

I opened up my eyes and saw a fainted shape of a face. It was saying something but I could hear nothing. Inaudible sounds just conquered the seams of my ears. Everything seemed foggy but his lips.

Then, suddenly, I finally heard him.

‘I love you.’  he said.

I was shocked. Chills ran to the depths of my bones. I closed my eyes and told myself that this is just a dream and I will wake up at the count of three.

‘I love you.’  he spoke again. I opened my eyes again and I could see him, he was sitting next to me. I was lying on the grass and my head on his lap. He was looking upon me.

‘Are you okay? You have been asleep for half an hour now.’  he said again.

‘I’m fine. I just… I just can’t comprehend this.’ I said

‘What?’  his forehead slightly crumpled.

‘I mean, I can’t understand this. You and me lying on a picnic blanket at the top of a hill and the sun is setting and we are next to a full-grown tree. This is like a dream. It is a fantasy, at the very most, for me.’

‘It is, isn’t it?’  he answered. ‘At first, I didn’t believe this. You were my dream since we met and we’re finally together.’

I was hoping for a different answer. I was referring to the very fabric of the current world, if it is true or not. I closed my eyes and tried really hard to wake up if this is just a dream. But it didn’t work. And now, I think this is real and the confusion was influenced by my dream.

‘I think we should go now.’ I said to him.

‘What?’  he looked surprised. ‘Are you kidding me? We came here to see the constellation of stars and its grandeur. You were literally jumping when you were telling me about that before we came here.’

I got really confused. And I finally said to him, ‘I think this is really a dream and I shall wake up when I close my eyes.’

He answered nothing. He just nodded. Again, I closed my eyes. I ended thinking of anything and started to clear my mind. I breathed slowly. I opened my eyes again and there, he was unhappy.

My heart crashed as I look at him. Great pain surrounded my heart and it slowly reached in to the core. Tears fell from my eyes.

‘I can’t believe this is really happening.’ I cried with tears gushing from my eyes. ‘I have this feeling that this is just a dream and nothing in this world is true. It is like a dream that came true. From what I believed was real, you and I were never meant for each other. It is the nature of humanity that kept us.’

He answered none and just hugged me. I could feel his heart beating like a fine symphony synchronizing with mine. I hugged him back and convinced myself to stop crying.

‘You were just drawn from the quiet tad tedious discussion with your philosophy class.’ He comforted me. ‘You told me that earlier when we arrived here.’

Then, all of a sudden, a colossal instance of memories flashed before my eyes.  Everything came back to me now. There was a lot of work to do, to differentiate dream from reality.

I answered to what he said earlier even though it was not a question. ‘I love you.’

I looked into his eyes and noticed something real. That instance placed a great relief in me, a relief from a demented thorn that once struck me.

I smiled at him. The scene was perfect. The day was shifting, the night was dawning. The winter wind has gone off and the summer breeze was already starting to move in place.

By the time I finished telling him about the Philosophy of Reality, the stars above us were countless. They aligned in a quite unique but beautiful sight. The sky was patterned with twinkling and non-twinkling stars. There was the milky way, a white-tinged of specter. And just below the sky’s horizon, there lies the city, the city that me and him always walked unto and where we conformed to the reality of social classification and stigma. Yet here, at the top of an uninhabited hill, we are free. Free to consume and succumbed ourselves with ecstasy and happiness. Such splendor is the grandeur that our universe offers, yet, to be most cautious, I could say that there are things that our universe hide and some things that we, humans, are not able to find out yet.

‘I brought jam sandwiches, your favorite. Let’s eat!’ He said.

‘That’s why I love, you always make me feel special and as for you… I brought my love!’ I laughed hard.

He also laughed. I could see happiness drawn fully on his countenance. He always has that sweet eyes, pulled-up checks and luscious red lips. Such splendor brought upon to earth by humanity and I think, no one could ever snatch such from him.

‘I love you, Alex.’ He said.

‘I love you too, Angelo.’ I said.