The Excellent Ones.

“Always live a life of excellence”

He said with a faint smile on his mouth. He gazed at them ,all of them, -his students, his legacy- and with the words he had spoken, placed upon their shoulders his vision, his hope and everything else he believed them to be.

As to whether all of them were paying attention to his fruitful words, one cannot say.

In that semi-lit room, some were chatting, some listening, some daydreaming, some regretting and the rest might be doing whatever else they are preoccupied with.

It was Java programming class. A Saturday. In the AVR room of the Roque Ruano building. That numbingly cold room smelled of socks and paint and technology.  We were sleepy and brain-fuzzed -having a mind boggling quiz on Philippine Literature earlier that morning. Some of us stank of coffee, others the smokey smell of Lacson Ave, the rest newly pampered and perfumed.

There were those who believed they will succeed. And there were those doubted their capabilities. There were those who thought they were in the wrong path. And those who simply went with the flow. We are all different. One can easily figure us out in the logic that we use in our programs. The shortcuts we make. The complicated twists and turns. The copied. And the wrong logic.

“Always live a life of excellence”

“Do everything with excellence”

And then you will succeed. One must not  live with the Filipino saying: “Puwede na”. Be ambitious. Now what you are capable of. Know who you are. And you will succeed.

You will.

Success is within arm’s reach.

To a person who knows where it lies.

~ ~



I wish to drift afar from this world,
I wish to rest, to sleep unrustled,
And yet, ere I go and suffer- turmoiled,
in sheets that imprisons,
These nightly chains against my accord.

Oh, where in the land of the awake?
Where to do I find a peace to lie on?
An instrument, a song, to release from my bonds,
To the Zion only sweet sleep can create?

Alas, the dawn is nearing and the sun breaking,
My weary head finds no peace still,
And as the clock’s fingers keep on turning,
I lose myself in dreams I never will.

The Writer.

Two fingers clipped around a cigarette,

A pencil tucked behind his ear.

On his table a coffee-stained paper sheet,

In his eye, a dried up tear.

A hushed prayer slide from heart to ink,

Scribbles and caffeine fill his void,

That, which once brimmed with youthful dreams,

Now only a melancholy he can’t ever avoid.

With nicotine musk and coffee breath,

And his words his world entire;

With worker’s hands that give them bread,

And his aching legs for fire.

An artist’s fingers of words and phrases,

A child’s dream slowly dimming.

A wearied man burdened with faces

hears a song beyond the word breaking.

He sips further into the bitterness,

to calm his dreary nerves,

And lose himself in the sweetness,

of his pen’s black lines and curves.

But, ah, the clock is chiming,

Far off from the plaza mayor,

And the writer’s hand had stopped writing.

His expression still and sour.

He gathered his paper and pens and cigar,

and placed his hat upon his head.

Forlorn and distraught he walks through the door,

Knowing that outside from the coffeeshop,

he is a writer no more.

By and by.

By and by until I die,
I’ll sit by the fire with you
We need no gold or silk or so,
For these chipped cups will do.

I see no shame in our broken china,
As we drink our days through,
It matters not what they say or think,
So long as I sit by the fire with you.

By and by until I die,
I’ll sing you a lullaby each night,
I’ll hold you in my arms’ embrace,
as your consciousness takes flight.

You’ll not be alone in a December chill,
Nor be lonely in August noons,
It matters not if we are old and damned,
So long as I breathe the world with you.

I Am Who.

I am Who.

Who dares speak the tongue of the forgotten,

For forgotten, that, I am.

Who breathes in the color of the sunset sky,

To paint my life again,

Who dances with the wind and trees,

To a music that only I can hear,

Who sees none further than the clock and the book,

As was the curse of the Future.

I am How.

How I really wanted myself to be,

Seeing the beauty that is to be seen,

Still a child, in heart and spirit,

Whose power is with art,

Whose Love is within Loathing.

Investing on sweaters and coats.

Grey, rain-stained mornings. Dull, blazing evenings.

I cannot recall the last day I looked upon the face of the sun and not curse it for its heat. I am beginning to loathe cool, breathy evenings – I writhe in my bed, covered with at least two blankets. I despise waking to the sound of silence -knowing that most people are still in their beds, I am envious. I cringe at social obligations. I cry easily under pressure. I buckle under the domineering, judgmental glance of society.

I am weak, cold and exhausted.

Worry is writ upon my forehead. Ambition, my only fuel. Dreams, crumbling and then reconstructing again. Knowledge, less than what they think. Intellect, not to be praised. Beauty, fuckery and damnation. Confidence, exists someplace else. Voice, diminished. Art, gone.

The world is dimming down for me. I am turning into a robot. Continuous, monotone, colorless, dull and cold.

I am always cold.

Well, at least nowadays.

Maybe it’s the lack of sleep. Or the lack of recreation. Or lack of everything else that I used to have that’s bugging me to bits. I am tired of our system. Always at work. Always busy. Each and everyday. The responsibilities that I am burdened with falls heavy unto my shoulders. My just-passing grades consuming me. And people. People who are constantly praising none but themselves and their own crapped up shit.

I am not in a good mood right now.

All the more reason why I should keep on writing.

What else must I write about?

Ah, sweaters.

A lot of people -may they be the bird-faced or the greedy potatoes- had been asking me as to why I am always wearing such wintry sorts of clothing when I am -after all- in a tropical country. They find it appalling that one can stand to be under heaps of garment when the sun is beating down.


Sweaters make me feel safe & secure.

Although not much people know of it, I was never the one to be emotionally attached. Some people might insist that I am. Some might agree. But fact is, I am my own girl. I belong to no one but myself. Thus, it took quite a while for me to get used to physical contacts with other people outside my gene pool. I believed -well, and I still do- that everyone will leave everyone. In one way or another they will. And when that time comes that they voluntarily step away from your life, you will feel a gaping hole form in the pit of your stomach. A hole that can’t ever be filled. Unless that person comes back again.

They never do, mind you.

If they step off from the painting that is your life, they step off never to be seen again.

Never to be heard of.

And you will be left with your other paintings with them in it and other paintings without.

What does his have to do with sweaters?


Sweaters provide comfort.

Of course they do.

But it’s more than that for me.

They give me some sort of warmth that makes me feel a tad bit capable of most anything. It’s hard to explain, actually. Mmm.. Imagine I am a fragmented spirit and that there’s nothing keeping me together except my sweaters & coats. Like an additional colorful skin.

I began buying heaps of jackets right after my dad died.

It was the year 2007. And I distinctly remember that it was the frostiest year I’ve ever seen. The fog was thicker. White smoke emanating from our lips. And cold. Damn the cold. It seeped into my bones and rattled in my tummy.

Every night I wore sweaters to keep me warm.

I huddled underneath my blankets like a kitten in a haystack. Socks were my new bestfriends. My hands hidden deep within my pockets. It was the coldest year I’ve seen. And my dad was dead. Which made everything colder and distant. No soup can kill the frost within me. Even if I burned my tongue on hot chocolates and boiling stews. It still wasn’t enough.

I guess my inner clock died.

And for 4 years -my whole highschool life- I was still within that year.

I’m proud to say that I’ve stopped wearing sweaters ‘everyday’.

I still wear them. Occasionally. Every other day.

Perhaps because I have become too dependent on them.

Ha Ha Ha.

~ o ~