Pink Rashes in a Pot

Frustrations, deaths and regrets all took toll on me

The years after college had been a powerful river which splashed me out of my comfort zone

I screamed that it should be gentler, life should be wiser

But it did not yield any. 

Today as I was strolling down my usual avenue

Where the muscle-toned beggar sit comfortably

And the coldness of the wind is not the only cold thing felt by the Persian cat waiting for the restaurant staff to leave the plastic of leftovers at the back

I caught three gold coins from my pocket and bought a newspaper. 

Same, bad, hopeless news awaited me

I continued walking to the coffee shop I regularly visit

And between my glances from the paper to the door of the shop – I saw frustration, death, and regret rolled into one. 

I saw you, at the end table of the coffee shop, the farthest from where I was but I knew it was you. 

My eyes went down to the white-collared suit you’re wearing, to the coffee you’re sipping, to the gold ring on your right finger. 

You’re back in town. The love of my life is back in town. The woman who married another man after I kneeled in front of her; frustration, death, and regret. 

It had been six years so I concluded that we should go on with our lives, so I entered the coffee house and went to the counter. You didn’t noticed me but I noticed a few thin, white hairs on your head; the subtle wrinkles in your eyes behind the glasses; the way your eyes scan your phone, emailing a coworker, I guess. 

As I leave the place, I looked at you again. This time, your eyes went up to my direction. Time stood by. A fragile smile was on your face, you nodded me to sit in front of you. That’s for your husband, I guess. Well, he’s not still around. I opted and for many, many, minutes, neither one of us talked. 

My hand clung to my seat as the memories swept me off, the happiness I never had again was in front of me, the pain which made me wed cigarettes ransacked my heart, and you didn’t even had to say a word. 

I lied that I had an important meeting that morning and I’m running late. I lied that I was happy that you’re having a second baby.  I lied that I was happy. 

Frustration, death and regret on me. 

I walked to the city and lit up a stick.

Boy, sometimes life makes you cry and you wish the tears will flow, but they couldn’t.

I never moved in my place until I emptied the cigarette box. 

Mahal, Kamusta Ka?

Mahal, kamusta ka? 

Tumila na ang ulan 

Tapos na ba ang iyong trabaho

Hindi ka ba masyadong nahapo? 

Mahal, naalala kita. 

Walang kasing bait

Sa lahat ay magiliw ka

Napakaswerte ko at tayo ay itinadhana. 

Mahal, kakatingin ko ng mga lumang litrato

Napangiti ako, ngunit hindi dahil sa iyo

Mahal, nais kong bumalik

Gusto kong ako ay manahimik. 

Mahal, hindi mo naitapon lahat ng aming litrato

Ang ilan sa kanila ay idiniin ko

Sa aking mga dibdib tila niyapos ko, 

Hanggang ang luha at dalangin ay

Ibinuhos ko. 

Mahal, patawarin mo ako. 

Hindi ikaw ang nasa puso ko

Balatkayong natutuwa sa pag-irog mo, 

Ang totoo mahal, siya pa rin ang mahal ko. 

Unemployed, Depressed Me

I’ve been so sad lately. My grandmother died and I regretted not visiting her regularly when she’s still alive. To where you are, nanay, I hope you saw how many people loved you while we were going to the cemetery. I miss you a lot. It pains me to remember that you just visited my father’s grave last December and now you’re the one we are visiting. I love you a lot nanay. Life didn’t take considerations for death.