With each step,
A crisp sound erupts.
Under sweaty soles,
Dry leaves crack—
To be trampled again—
As sturdy as the branch
Where the leaves once lived.
Montage Vol. 11 • September 2008
Why on a day like this,
Water kisses the earth
Dropping like unstringed necklace pearls
To the ground.
Footsteps press against the soil,
Raindrops fill the void,
And the wet scent of weeds
Overpowers that of sweat-soaked shirts,
All too abruptly.
Under my umbrella—
Not even the heaviest downpour
Can hinder the sun Read more »
Like us this sun’s regress
Sliding slowly into the
River’s rim does not have
A history. We begin
The day newly born
And shriven, and end it
Wisened with age and life
Lived blood-red full
Literary goddess Ophelia A. Dimalanta, while on board M.S. Egilika, praised the longest river in the world—Nile—in her poem “Beginnings,” which is featured in her book The Ophelia Dimalanta Reader Volume 1 (UST Publishing House, 2004).
I have waited for the years to melt down
Your overgrown nettles, sweet dew, magic
Flowers stretching to a hundred leagues
On paddies and green mountains. Read more »
Nangitlog na ang inahin sa aspaltong kapatagan.
Umusbong ang mga rosas at nalanta
sa panlilisik ng mga mata ng araw.
Nakawala sa piitan ang mababangis na hayop.
Ang mga leon ay nag-amok sa kahabaan ng riles
samantalang ang mga tigre ay nag-alburuto sa ilalim ng tulay.
Ang kalsada ay pinagharian ng mga kabayong naggigitgitan Read more »
The long road is fringed with majestic
pili trees, some specked with flowers, or,
with ripe kernels now ground-fallen
The leaves wave, welcoming
the wind, glad that even in a windstorm,
the trees remain faithful to the earth.
Warm afternoon light winnows
through spaces between pandan blades,
streaking the road with gold and shadows.
Our faces smile through flutters of brightness
then gray. It is summer
yet the earth is moist and fragrant.
And the wind, streaming through the screwpine,
is like perfume kissing the skin.
A hundred feet up this mountain, Read more »