jornales

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

shadows (my haibun at Notes from the Gean, March 2012)

shadows

how much longer

As a child, I searched for shadows. Under trees at high noon when the crown of an acacia tree from across our balcony 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 groves.  I waited on the engorged shadow of a kingfisher that never failed to fly by.

My grandmother had learned from snoops that I sauntered alone at high noon by the stream–even took dips. Upbraided, I stopped creeping under the shadowed stream for a while. Instead, I began haunting shadows in the wooded orchard of a grandaunt. One afternoon, a buzzing shadow chased me. A swarming cloud, the bees I had disturbed raced me to the chicken coop. I suffered a few stings, which my grandaunt soothed with dabs of burnt molasses syrup.

These days, I’m hunting shadows again under ruins and buildings that block the sun off. Why this disdain for the sun, a friend once asked. What answer could I give?

half


of who we are

shadows

Notes from the Gean 3:4 March 2012

NOTE: layout for this page only with photo of  an old building in Montreal by eleanor angeles

March 24, 2012 Posted by | haibun, poetry | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

closer to nothing (NaHaiWriMo prompt on natural disaster)

St. Andrew's Parish Church tower, Bacarra, Ilocos Norte, Philippines

closer to nothing
under its shrinking shadow–
Bacarra tower*

Ooops!! 5-7-5, sorry Michael! Didn’t mean to. But just to share for now…
*brick and mortar tower in my hometown where according to legend, a Spanish royal guard could ride on horseback through the stairs inside of it, bearing the red and gold colors to the third window. This baroque tower built on ‘obras pias’ (alternate tribute of hard labor by the natives) in the 1800s completed toward the end of that century, was known to be the tallest in the archipelago so much so that its domed tip could be seen towns away and the toll of its enormous bells could be heard amid the raging South China sea. Its top window broke during a massive earthquake in the 1930s (can’t recall the exact date) with its dome humbled onto the fracture. With each earthquake, quite frequent in the Philippines, the dome would be crunched lower and lower until another strong one pushed it off its precarious perch to fall on the ground. Ruins of its first window from its base of brick and mortar are all that remains.

August 25, 2011 Posted by | haiku, poetry | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

unfinished tales (for One Shoot Sunday)

photo prompt by Neil Alexander

at nightfall
a herded flock of sheep bearing
flasks of prayers
bleat on their steps
toward the temple

in the distance
crows scream for mercy
the broken tower
unleashes bats sniggering
at the sheep

in the darkness
the owl hoots at a pregnant moon
who smiles at shrinking Mars
the stars in his court simpering
conspire with the moon

in the thorny bushes
men braid their way into the night
on their heads their gifts
wobble like heads of wearied gods
once revered

seething fireflies their pin eyes
darting among snoring bees
beguile the men
who mesmerized by the light
melt on their knees

spirits splatter
on yesterday’s thorns turned
night embers burning the temple
far off where prayers thicken
barnacled walls

Dawn fans the dying
souls of the moaning sheep
and the whimpering men
the bats coat the temple tower
with their leavings

on the altar awaiting gifts
the gods disentangle
their limbs but leave their hearts
to morning worshippers
hankering for unfinished tales

Posted for One Shoot Sunday at One Stop Poetry, the gathering place that has been the most fertile ground for my poetry where among the most talented poets and artists whose invaluable nurturing caused me to wildly bloom. I thank Adam, Chris G, Claudia, Pete and Brian’s endless unfailing smiles who are leaving OSP and especially Joy and Jenne, goddesses of the lyrical realm for me, for my growth. Thanks especially for the Sunday page, Chris and Adam, these have driven me to work on original pieces I could never have written. It has been for me a blast of 28 weeks and as you had promised Adam, Chris, Claudia and Brian, I hope to meet you again or please seek me out when you are orbiting in the spheres again! I really can’t thank your enough for your support and uplifting words about each poem I’ve written for OSP.

July 10, 2011 Posted by | free verse, poetry | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments