"While power leads man toward arrogance, poetry reminds him of his limitations."
- John F Kennedy as cited by the late Dean Ophelia A Dimalanta PhD, UST Arts and Letters in the book's Foreword, March 1998.
Professor Erlita D Mendoza
Paintings by Dr Abe V Rotor
This morning I met silence
In the dark mists
this morning I met silence.
What soothing voice!
silence has sounds,
darkness has light.
To hear sounds, one must be
steeped in silence.
To see light, one must be
enveloped in darkness.
I saw light in darkness.
I heard sound greet me
Morning by a Nymphaea Pond in acrylic by AVR
In mornings like this,
silence stills the noise I hear within.
the blinding light of my knowing.
In mornings like this
there is calm.
I have peace.
Armando F. de Jesus, Arts and Letters
A View of the Valley
Many a dream is born and gone astray.
A beacon beaming once, now ringed with light,
Where once a moth has died in a spirited flight.
It keeps eternal whisperings as the wind passes by,
Bringing sweet memories and new promises,
Where a beacon beams though now ringed with light,
Where another moth dies in another flight.
Abercio V. Rotor, Graduate School
Today, I'll wash
The robe of emptiness
Until it is sun-bleached white
Scrubbing blotches of splitting
Afterthoughts, pain rubs hard
Against the lesions of wrinkled
.Ashen hands hurting repeatedly
Upon each stroke of reminiscence.
It's half done now,
But the suds still billow
Into cumulus froth, bubbles hide
All residue of misery
I wring tightly this orphan feeling
Till every longing drips their last.
I’ll hang my heart to dry
Sheet clean in the long line
Of forgetting and forgiving.
• Ferdinand M. Lopez, Arts and Letters
(Manggahan Dumpsite.Quezon City)
Many years ago
You had another name,
Gleaners, and work was also game.
Now it's all work
And the art of the vulture,
And those with fangs and ugly mane.
But if none is waste and waste is useful
Would your breed thrive just the same?
Abercio V. Rotor, Graduate School
to keep its promise
The sun shone
across the silent
And standing idly
in this half-reflected
I felt a nameless,
A pleasure secret
Nancy N. Tabirara, Arts and Letters
Paskong 'El Nino
(Ang bawa't pasko ay paskong el nino
sapagka't ang dahilan, buod, at puno't dulo
ng ating pagdiriwang ay ang pagsilang ng sanggol na mesiyas:
EI Nino Hesus )
Nawa'y gawin ka niyang mapagbigay
Tulad ng Ulan,
Dugtong-dugtong kung pumatak
Bagama't minsa'y ambong-Iuha lamang.
Nawa'y gawin ka niyang malaya
Tulad ng Ilog,
Walang patid kung dumaloy
Bagama't minsa'y usad-estero lamang.
Nawa'y gawin ka niyang mapagmahal
Tulad ng Dagat,
Walang maliw ang debosyon sa dalampasigan
Bagama't minsa'y lambing-alon lamang.
Nawa'y gawin ka niyang mapaglikha
Tulad ng Lupa,
Bawa't patak ng ulan, daloy ng ilog, alan ng dagat
Ay nagiging salita sa kanyang sinapupunan
Isinisilang sa daigdig
Bilang bulaklak at luntiang kariktan.
Rolando V. dela Rosa,OP
There is loneliness
In gazing at mountains
where many trees die.
The hills glisten red, then blue.
The rains will bring
(But until then .. )
Where have all the flowers gone?
The avalanche of fires
will overcome wanton caterpillars,
there is no place for butterflies
and then lie
in homage to the sky.
of lives once spent.
The winds cease their whispers
as dying embers are laid to rest
at passing of the day.
Rodel E. Aligan, OP
Be Thou the Stewards
In the beginning
The earth was bare
And Chaos ruled.
And then a gentle gaze,
The tender voice of Love
Brought forth the rolling hills,
The shady woods,
The gleaming galaxies,
The glowing dawn and soothing twilight .
Man and woman .
Then flowers bloomed!
And the voice of Love
In solemn admonition rang,
"Be thou the Stewards of these gifts."
In the silence of our hearts
We hear this truth.
As guardian of these bounties
We must preserve,
Conserve the affluence of nature,
Tranquility of woods and forests,
Protect the lakes and seas.
And then we can indeed rejoice
And say, ''I've done my share!"