jornales

for a moment of joy or moments no one pays for, i give myself a ‘jornal’. this makes me rich. try it.

inner cities (a sort of versified haibun, an experiment)

 

draperies of wrinkled winds the affectations we traded for dawn kisses straining the moon

listen to the children beginning their climb on a spiral of electives we elders concocted out of broken yarn

they’ll string them together with knots we had thought as we waxed the yarn sliding them between our canines

a child bursts into a scream at birth shedding his mother’s blood-coating a slimy red he knew he did not need but by then gurgling through his veins

this evening of attrition it’s blood roiling unseen that drives him to untangle the net he knotted and wove from broken yarn those strands his mother also called blood

we watch out for when he and his siblings scramble up our limbs and bite our tongue and begin to scale the spiral to the moon

 

a tale of inner cities

…flat lining a wall

March 7, 2015 Posted by | haibun, poetry | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

‘buttonhole’ haiga4 for 19 Planets Arts Blog

haiga4 another clip art creation with Microsoft Publisher

buttonhole–
fireflies sneak
into my dreams

Another post composed with clip art on Microsoft Publisher for Rick Daddario’s haiga-a-day 19 Planets Art Blog.

The haiku came out of a reflection about dreams and fireflies. How often like children do we wonder what makes what seems not possible possible like what makes a firefly glow in the dark. Science does explain it with a chemical they carry like luminescent creatures of the sea. We say, ahhh to that. But tell that to a child and she looks at air. Nothing there. I must have done it many times as a child because the wonder stayed. No matter how much I read now as an adult and discover answers to what once was unexplainable, I remain with the mystery and the dream. And for me, fireflies will always be those fallen stars I used to catch as a child and slept with one, if I did, in my tight fist, expecting it would still twinkle when I wake up.

September 10, 2011 Posted by | haiga, haiku, poetry, reflection | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

shadows (a haibun)

shadows–
how much longer
can we stay?

Shadows have always fascinated me. As a child, I chased them or rather searched for them. Under trees at high noon when the crown of an acacia tree from across our balcony but covered its root space like a clipped parasol, I’d creep to it and hug the ancient roots, basking in its shadow. By the stream where my grandmother scoured the soot off the iron rice pot and skillet, I’d haunt the silken strips of shadows under bamboo grooves and waited on the engorged shadow of a kingfisher that never failed to fly by; damselflies swarmed around that time, too. But by then, I’d be drawing on the dance of bamboo leaves on the steady current for a clue on which side of the stream is shallowest for me to swim. My grandmother had learned from snoops that I sauntered alone at high noon by the stream–even took dips, shedding off my clothes to wear her pandiling* or tapis** (sarong-like cloth) that when soaked weighed on my body and tended to slip off; I had by then showed signs of turning into a woman. Upbraided, I stopped creeping under the shadowed stream for a while. It was then when I began exploring the wooded orchard of a grandaunt and got chased by a swarm of bees I had disturbed. My granduncle had heard my screams and came with a mosquito net plus some kind of obnoxious spray. I suffered a few stings that my grandaunt soothed with dabs of burnt molasses syrup. I had since then, confined my fascination for shadows under ruins and buildings that block the sun off. Why this disdain for the sun, a friend once asked. What answer could I give for some things I have none?

half
of who we are–
shadows

(Prompt from a free-wheeling discussion with Rick Daddario, 19 Planets Art Blog that you can click on my blogroll, about a would-be no-goal project we have on ‘moon and shadows’.)

*Iluko, the tongue of the northernmost region of the Philippine archipelago I was born with
**Pilipino, native language of the Filipinos derived mostly from Tagalog, the dialect of the central plains in Luzon, the biggest of 7,100 islands, where Manila and also my region are located. Filipinos speak four major dialects of the 87 with Pilipino (and English in its varied adaptations to tongue and colloquial expressions) spoken in most of the islands. I speak but can’t write proficiently in Pilipino.

Copyright (c) 2011 by Alegria Imperial

August 23, 2011 Posted by | haibun, poetry | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

dawn, a bilingual poem in English and Iluko for One Shot Wednesday (re-post)

In the spirit of first anniversaries that One Shot Wednesday is celebrating, I wish to share an exhilarating moment I’ve had when my poem in Iluko, the dialect I was born with but never wrote with until now, was published, my first ever in the dialect, in Bannawag, a vernacular magazine of the Ilocanos in northern Philippines I read as a child.

Writing from the spirit for me is true writing. While I’m re-learning my tongue like a child, I find in it each time the soul of my expression. The source of my anguish must be its imprisonment in the tangled web of borrowed thought and language. But kneading them together now as in this poem has allowed me bouts of sheer joy. I seem to be writing through this ‘duality’ since then–the borrowed cultures or cultures that impinged on my birth or even in my mother’s womb. And my anguish has lessened since I acknowledged who I am and of what I’m woven.

(as featured poem in winningwriters.com Newsletter, Spring 2010, a loose translation in English by the author with some nuances substituted as in some verbs, which in Iluko already imply a subject, and nouns that need no adjectives)

startled,
stars fell in the dark
among leaves
pining over lost suns–

loves
that light birthed
drowned in the roar of the
faithless

unbidden
a freeze crept,
swaddling
the newborn

leaves whirled
onto a fractured cloud,
stars splattered, blinding
the lost

jasmine blossoms
curtsied
as if penitent
shedding their petals

in the palm
of the newborn blossoms
bloomed into a garland for
dawn

(Iluko version as edited and published in Bannawag, the Ilocano vernacular magazine of the Ilocos region in northern Philippines, May 16, 2009)

agsapa

naimayeng
dagiti bituen idi mangngegda
ti as-asug
dagiti bulong iti sipnget
narba
dagiti pinatanor ti lawag
iti danarudor
dagiti agam-ammangaw

awan pakpakada
ti yuuli ti lam-ek
kadagiti di pay nabungon
a kaipasngay

nagkaribuso
dagiti nayaplag a bulong
bayat ti isasangpet
ti ulep a makapurar

nagkurno
dagiti hasmin
kas man la agpakpakawan
narurosda

iti ima
ti maladaga
nagbukelda a kuentas
ti agsapa

Copyright (c) 2010 by Alegria Imperial

Re-post from 9/22/2010 for One Shot Wednesday at One Stop Poetry, the inimtable gathering place for poets and artists that celebrates its First Anniversary today (tomorrow?) Wednesday! I joined in only halfway in November last year after I stumbled on it in patteran’s page. It’s been a blast to get to know the most amazing, the most talented, and gifted poets and artists here. Check us out!

June 29, 2011 Posted by | lyric poetry, poetry | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments