Maligayang Kaarawan Babaylang Lizette

 

lizCincuenta

Cincuneta anyos
Pinagtibay na ng unos
Kalahating siglo na ang inabot
Pero kalian man ang pag-ibig ay di naging kapos.

Cincuenta
Buhay na di nawalan ng kuwenta
Prinsipyo ay di rin ibenenta
Dahil ang mithi ay palayain ang mga aba.

Babaylan kung tawagin at ituring
Gigisingin ang iyong diwa sa pagkakahimbing
Pagkat wag siyang asahang maglalambing
Sa gitna ng pang-aabuso at pagsupil
Mapangahas niya itong pupunahin

Tulad niya rin ay isang teolohiya
Nagkakaroon ng saysay kung umaakma sa praktika
Pag-iisip ay tulad ng karit, pinatatalas ng pakikibaka
Pagsusuri ay tulad ng tabak sa pagsasalansan ng tamang linya
Para adhikain at pakinabanagan ng mamamayan at masa.

lizetteTulad niya ay isang liturhiya
Sa buhay ay kinikilala ang lungkot at ang saya
Ang tagumpay , ang pagdiriwang, at paglaya

Tulad niya ay isang sermon
Mensaheng hatid ay di lamang ikaw ay alaiwin at patawanin
Pagkat ang paniniwala niya ang mensahe ay di perya
Kundi upang ihatid ka sa pangpang ng Kalayaan at katotohanan .

Tulad siya ng isang sining at tula
Bawat taludtod at himamay na salita
Ay may layuning palayain ang kataga
Upang bigkisin at handugan ang madla
Ng mensaheng magpapagunita sa puso at kaluluwa
Higit sa lahat tayo ay tao, at ang pag-aalipusta
Ay dapat walang puwang sa himaymay ng kamalayan

 

Cincuenta anyos

 

Si Babaylang Lizette ay isang anak, asawa, ina at kaibigan.
Iyan ang kadalasan nagsasalarawan sa mga kababaihan
Ngunit tiyak ko ang laging niyang paninindigan
Ang pwesto ng babae ay di naitatakda sa kusina,kama , o pamilihan
Kundi sa kilusang pagababago ng ating bayan at lipunan.

Maligayang kaarawan sa iyo Babaylang Lizette
Sana ang mithiin at pangarap mo ay maganap at makamit
Hanggang ang adhikain ay maging ganap at sumapit
Sa bawat tao , lalo na sa kanila na ang karapatan ay ipinagkait.

Ciancuenta anyos
Limang dekada ng paglalakabay at pagkakatuto
Pag latag ng mga tanong at agam-agam sa buhay
Pagtangan sa mga pagpapsya at pagkilos
Habang winawasto ang sarili mula sa hakbangin at gawi
Na magiging hadlang sa pagwawagi
Ng bayan at ng masang api.

 

Sengkuwenta anos na siya
Pweding hangaan pweding pamarisan
Pero kahit kailan ang mas nanaisin niya
Ay hindi ang pedestal para siya ay sambahin
O isang hulmahan ng katangian
Pagkat katulad ng mapagpalyang diwa
Ang mithi nya ay bawat isa ay tahakin
Ang landasin ang daan ng kontradiksyon
Bakahin ang pagtitining ng wasto at mali
Pagkampi sa katotohanan sa gitna na madalas parangalan ang kasinungalingan
Pagtangan sa katarungan sa gitna na pagpaparangal sa mandarambong at kawatan.

Babaylang Lizette
Intelektuwal, theologian peminsita, aktibista
Iniluwala ng kanyang ina, iniluwal din ng pakikibaka
Pinapanday ang kaisipan, diwa at kalooban
Ina rin siya sa sariling pagakatao at iniluluwal ang sarili
Habang ipinaglalaban ang maga isina-sa isang tabi.

 

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How does one love forever? ( A message on the 25th Wedding Anniversary of Nerice and Fel)

29791888_10156347832012940_8990866376027572676_n

Songs of Solomon 8:6-7a,
1 John 4:7-12

 

Walang Forever?
How does one live forever?
How does one love forever?

Forever is both and promise and a fulfillment. It is boundless and bindless.

Walang forever. Not even marriage. Not even a relationship. Not even known connections.
For even the promise of the blossoming of flowers, it would end up with the falling of petals until the renewal awaits for the new beginning…

A song says,
“In a restless world Like this is
Love is ended before it’s begun
And too many moonlight kisses
Seem to cool in the warmth of the sun. . .”

In the contradictions and dynamics of changing time, WALANG FOREVER.

But, there is only lasting and permanent confirmation of “FOREVER”- that is LOVE!

Love is Forever.

The Love we share – expressed in our struggle to fulfill its promise and to receive the joyful grace there is in it, brings to the infinity of the FOREVER LOVE that we claim.

Where is forever?

Is it not in the HOPE that you cling and cherish. This HOPE is the gift that you hold on to, especially in the most attractive time to give up when crisis upon crisis arise.

 

The marriage of Fel and Nerice is a union of two beings.

Marriage is a union of two beings. Two people with different pasts, memories, traditions, and values, though they may share the same vision, views, and perspectives, are now united in love. The differences will be blended by respect and by guarding each other’s dignity amidst differences. The two will be together. As they become one, they will remain to be two. Marriage is not intended to be a total merge, where differences cease to exist, where one’s identity is subsumed by the other; rather, it is a journey of two individuals where they can fully and honestly be and become themselves and even share at the deepest levels what they are, and all that life is. Marriage, just like in any relationships, is not about “ownership”.
We were put together as a community, including the whole ecology, the natural world, in harmony with each other and the possibility of growing, nurturing, and celebrating Life and Grace.
The narrative of Creation illustrates a relationship founded in the LOVE of God, in interdependence, of HELPING (ezer) one another: “This, at last, is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh” (Gen.2:23). Every human being is connected the other. We are of one flesh, one bone, one heart, one GOD. What separates us from each other is OPPRESSION, EXPLOITATION, and DOMINATION.

In any relationship, LOVE, JUSTICE, and RESPECT are necessary components. We advise our children and youth that once these values waiver, abandonment and fractures in relationships result. A healthy relationship, in fact, any good relationship, must be based on LOVE and MUTUALITY.

We thank Life for the gift of Love. Through this love, Nerice and Fel met, became friends, partners, and lovers. This gift has taught them the meaning of loving and caring, of giving and receiving, of hoping and believing. For 25 years they grew as sojourners taking each day as an opportunity to grow as partners and as individuals, being aware of the larger community beyond themselves – the church, the community, the society.

Today, we are here, friends, relatives, families, co-workers and colleagues of Fel and Nerice.  WE thank you for your prayers and support so that Nerice and Fel are able to learn from each other.Their love was nourished and you have also surrounded them with your wisdom, protected them with your compassion.

Marriage is not forever…. LOVE is the Forever

Nerice and Fel, entered into the contract of legal marriage, but what nourished and remoulded them is not the piece of the legal contract, but of ability as human individuals to soulfully find each other’s independence and growing up together as husband and wife, and as Nerice herself and Fel himself.

THE LOVE we have witnessed in them is not a matter of success story. Love is not just a document of story. It is a testimony of what both lovers believe in.

Is there a secret in this 25 years, a quarter of a century of experiencing LOVE?

Is it because Nerice and Fel are compatible?

A study says, about 50 percent of marriages end in divorce; add to that the 10 to 15 percent of couples who permanently separate, plus the 7 percent who stay in unsatisfying unions and you’re left with this depressing statistic: Only 3 in 10 couples end up happily married, writes Ty Tashiro, Discovery Network’s relationship expert and University of Maryland professor, in his forthcoming book, “The Science of Happily Ever After: What Really Matters in the Quest for Enduring Love.” (https://health.usnews.com/health-news/health-wellness/articles/2014/01/21/in-the-quest-for-love-should-you-seek-chemistry-or-compatibility)

29573035_10156347836567940_1844690490514139799_n25 years. A quarter of a century.  For the 25 years, they grow together as a friend to each other, as a co-worker, as a colleague, as parents to their children , and as husband and wife.

Is it because he is a pastor who graduated from UTS? And she is a deaconess who got the degree from Harris? Hmmm, traditionalists in our church could easily matchmake a seminarian with a deaconess, as if it could be a basis for a lasting relationship. Maybe beneath this set of opinion is not so much of romantic innuendo, but an unconscious desire of two- in-one appointment in the church and the mathematical computation on compensation would economize the spending of the church. On the other hand, there are beautiful stories of compatibility of a pastor with a deaconess, but we do not endorse that as a rule of compatibility.

Is it because of chemistry? Scientists have a lot to say on this. Laura Berman, author of “Loving Sex: The Book of Joy and Passion.” “It’s a mysterious and beautiful formula that you can’t necessarily force or create,” and one that’s critical for a lasting union, she says. Still, “I think the most important quality that you need in a mate who’s going to go for the long haul with you is someone who is open to learning about themselves and willing to change and be flexible and who is resilient – because you’re going to have crises, you’re going to have conflicts, you’re going to look at things differently, you’re going to go through hard times in life and you have to be able to communicate.”

Is it because they belong to a particular region in the Philippines as both are from Bulacan? Is it because of economics?
We could guess, but we have been witnesses to their LOVE. 25 years is already a semblance of forever, of a relationship that is long-lasting.
One answer to the question is not supposedly a template. All of our answers could contribute to what they call now a HAPPY CELEBRATION OF LIFE and LOVE.

Their LOVE journey is unique. We could learn from them, but they could not impose on any couple what uniqueness they have earned over time. For Nerice and Fel are able to grow in LOVE by not imposing each other of what they want or what they believe in, BUT how they struggle and unite— as they remold themselves in UNITY and STRUGGLE and UNITY.
We are truly blessed by their LOVE. They have been through a lot. From the Philippines, finding themselves as immigrants in a strange land, and in their way of thriving, not only surviving but Thriving, they seek to grow spiritually, intellectually, socially and politically.

As a couple they have not forgotten the service to humanity. That makes their relationship special. It is not just a private affair of celebrating their love., Always in their hearts and minds is the service to justice and peace. While Fel could be the public person, articulate and uncompromising when it comes to the issue of human rights, justice and peace, Nerice is not a silent “guest” to the engagement. She is a FORCE who is more than an ally . With Nerice, Fel is able to share this public witness ministry.

Nerice is not the fulfillment of Fel, neither Fel is the fulfilment of Nerice. It is in each individual’s self- respect, self- upliftment, and self-love –  that made each other confident in entering into a beautiful relationship as husband and wife.

We have seen the Divine Love in their relationship. There is no secret or customized formula, but Love itself.

You remember the Kung Fu Panda on the secret ingredient for the soup?

“The secret ingredient is…There is no secret ingredient! Don’t have to, to make something special, you just have to believe it’s special.”

Nerice and Fel, always believe that their love is special. Period. And we believe. Because of their testimony.

Closing

A prayer
Guide them with your power. Make them an instrument of your peace and justice. Let your liberating love set an example to their relationship. Give each other a space for growth, for learning and unlearning things. Grant them the perfect love that could overcome every test and transcend storms and trials. Strengthen them as they face challenges and as they commit their love for each other in the service of the poor, deprived and oppressed people.

May their lives be threads that weave a beautiful and abundant future. In the name of the God of Love in Jesus Christ, Amen##

 

March 31, 2018
UP Hotel, University of the Philippines
Diliman Quezon City

Having Faith and Being an activist is not a Contradiction , But A Fulfillment of Self

 

down_from_cross_sm

Getting the Poor Down From the Cross  https://liberationtheology.org/

There is much talk and debate among self-confessed church people whether the faithful ones must participate in social advocacies or activism.

 

The imposition  of a worldview saying that engaging in activism dilutes the teaching s  of the church brings an excruciating pain to the whole body of believers.  Bigotry becomes a fertile ground of bias, misjudgment, and inability to share love and grace.

I do not mind the multiplicity of ideas. After all, what makes church beautiful is that it has a colorful, diverse and varied membership.  Everyone has his or her historical background, a story to tell, and a testimony to share. By grace alone that we can celebrate what takes to be a church.

Must we find blessing in our differences?

Yes. Our differences mmust furthermorelead us into  radical welcoming of one another rather than perceiving  those who do not conform to our set  of ideals. This stiffens our  hearts and minds  leading to bigotry.

Activism is a political stance that aims to change the world, and more realistically but seldom acknowledged, the self. The broader goals of dissent are easily and widely depicted but what is not always rendered visible is the almost miraculous transformation of the individual.( Mong Palatino,writer and former AnakBayan youth representative  to Congress)

Activism is not a bad idea or a bad endeavour, as it was not bad for  Mary to sing the  Magnificat saying that God has brought down the powerful from their thrones,    and lifted up the lowly; he has filled the hungry with good things,    and sent the rich away empty”( Luke1:52-54).

We could not blame Jesus when he once said,  “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me”( Matthew 19:21).

Activism does not divide the church, it is the incapacity of the faithful to sincerely love one another that divide the church.

Activism does not lead the church to atheism. It is the unforgiving tendency of the faithful that rejects the participation of the many in nourishing the gift of service to others.

 Activism does not lead us to hell. It is the refusal to welcome in our fold the poor, the deprived and the oppressed and seek justice for those who were made victims by the empire –  now best manifested in the rule of imperialism.

Activism does not take our faith away from us. It humbly leads us to where our hearts should be. It leads us to Jesus who once was denied of home, social security, and basic necessities.  When he did not conform to the standards of the world – empty piety, servility to Roman Rule, refusal to ally with the corrupt  –  he ended up getting judicially killed.

Activism does not kill our faith.  It challenges us to resurrect from the dead –  those values, caprices, behavior, a viewpoint that kill the best in us as human beings created in the image of God.  Activism retrieves us from emptiness due to lack of compassion and living in the system that promotes individualistic and selfish indulgence.

Activism leads us to self-criticism and remolding of character and values that are compatible in the building up of heaven down here.

 If there is a fuel that drives activism, it is no less than LOVE in action.

No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. ( John 15:3 NRSV)

 

 

 

 

Women Should Not Endorse Duterte’s ChaCha

The-Duterte-Administration-and-the-Politics-Of-Accommodation

Overloaded by Renan Ortiz 

In a very patriarchal mold and at the backdrop of market-driven capitalist economy and subservience to foreign rule, the   ChaCha of Pres. Duterte is rape of the 1997  Constitution. While it is not a perfect constitution, it is dangerous to entrust to Pres. Duterte the reforms or changes in the fundamental principles in which a state is governed.  

 
 With his creeping dictatorial posture, and with the rising tyranny, Duterte’s Chacha is about giving him the rationalization and the justification to continue his domineering power.   It is about the extension of the power of the already powerful. It is about opening up wider our economy and culture to foreign rule. It is about diluting the people’s rights.
 
 Women must denounce the patriarchal bearing overtly seen in the Duterte government.
 Known for his macho, anti-women and anti-poor policies, Pres. Duterte arrogates on violence and hostility to ensure the perpetuation of his self-interests to hold on to power. In the state’s   inability to solve the problem of poverty, corruption, feudal bondage of landlessness, he resorts to war on drugs that killed thousands of lives and yet failed to curb the problem. After so much blood from the poor spilled for nothing, his taking approach only intensifies the vicious killings and abuse of authorities. 
 
With such a  macho-dictator man, we could not entrust the changing of 1997 Constitution under his time and under his term.   His mouth profusely spilling out the venom of sexist and misogynist pronouncements reveals how he disrespect people.  Like a typical macho, he passes on the blame of misfortune to the victims.  Just like when a woman is raped,  a patriarchal society puts the fault on the victim and not on the assailants.   His 
victim-blaming ( the  poor people who are  addicted, small-time-illegal drugs  peddler, the  rights activists ) ,   victim-bashing ( the killing of the  poor accused of being drug addicts  and peddler, including the  non-addicts  who were also killed,  the killings of the activists and incarceration of the  justice and peace workers slapped with trumped-up charges) are  threats  to the lives of people and community.
 
The   bloody   gory war on drugs   and war against the people’s democratic rights  have 
claimed lives.
 

Must we entrust a Charter Change to Duterte whose pronouncements signal a dangerous time of trampling civil, political and cultural rights? Must we entrust a ChaCha at a time of Duterte ’s opening up of country’s resources to foreign big business?  Must we entrust a ChaCha with a President who promotes patronage politics?

Literally and Seriously

 

 

edwin alab ng puso

paitning of rev. 

The spokesperson of the President, Atty Harry Roque, once again made a ramshackle statement when he defended his principal on his pronouncement about shooting the vagina of the women NPA. Roque  said, “‘Do not take the President literally, take him seriously.”

 

 

Mr. Spokesperson, even if we find it unbecoming of a  public figure your threats of throwing a hollow block on the critics of the President,  as  Christians we would not wish you to be shoot on your balls.   We would not even wish the enemies of the people to  suffer from rape, female mutilation,  or any gendered punishment of the bodies.

Violence against women should not happen anytime, anywhere.

In fact, the state  is responsible in ensuring the full protection of women  as stated in

“Republic Act 9262 Anti-Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004, SECTION 2. Declaration of Policy. “It is hereby declared that the State values the dignity of women and children and guarantees full respect for human rights. The State also recognizes the need to protect the family and its members particularly women and children, from violence and threats to their personal safety and security.

Towards this end, the State shall exert efforts to address violence committed against women and children in keeping with the fundamental freedoms guaranteed under the Constitution and the Provisions of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the convention on the Elimination of all forms of discrimination Against Women, Convention on the Rights of the Child and other international human rights instruments of which the Philippines is a party.”

A gendered war against  women  NPA  disrespects  the previously signed agreement  with the rebels  through the National Democratic Front (NDF), the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights  International Law (CAHRHIL).

The Peace Talks  between the GRP and the National Democratic Front (NDF)   is stalled    because the President has publicly pronounced the termination albeit  a formal written notification has not ben sent to the other   party. The Peace Talks with its basic principle of addressing the roots of the armed conflict  is a way to  address the violence taking place on the  ground.

 

The President’s pronouncement  of shooting the NPA women’s vagina   is a fascist  declaration reminding  us of the gory rape of women and children, of the Comfort Women in World War II,  the rape and abuse  of women during Spanish and American occupation,  and the  rape of women during Martial Law of  dictator Marcos.

And, yes, we take his words literally and seriously, as the pronouncement comes not from an ordinary man in the streets but from the highest office of the  Republic.

The BBC News  quoted Amnesty International reports that says “Rape and sexual abuse are not just a by-product of war but are used as a deliberate military strategy, it says. The opportunistic rape and pillage of previous centuries have been replaced in modern conflict by rape used as an orchestrated combat tool.”

There is no difference between taking the words of the President literally and seriously. Literally,  we have witnessed how the poor once are killed and violated when he pronounced, “The ones who died in Bulacan, 32, in a massive raid, that is good. We could just kill another 32 every day, then maybe we could reduce what ails this country)”.  As time passes by thousands of our people have been murdered. We take that literally and seriously.

And what difference it makes – literally and seriously –  when he ordered  his troops  to crush the militants  saying, “ “I alone would be responsible” for anything they did under martial law, he said. “I will go to jail for you. If you happen to have raped three women, I will own up to it.”

When the President announced before the  AFP to “to drop bombs, and flatten the hills,” coupled with “never mind the collateral damage” he unleashed real threats. Lo and behold!  We lament how the Lumad are displaced from their ancestral domain.  The UN Human Rights Council’s special rapporteurs on the rights of indigenous peoples and internally displaced people had expressed concern that militarization had displaced thousands of indigenous Lumad people and some had been killed.

 

We take the President’s words literally and seriously, with chilling terror.

 

 

 

Police at Shrine, a Reminiscence of Marcos’ Dictatorship

28378452_580524202328063_6842172935987621872_nUnder the scorching heat of the sun, the ecumenical community from different churches including the religious and laity who are in their senior years flocked to the EDSA Shrine grounds in an ecumenical prayer in honor of People Power. Lo, and behold!, a lot of the policemen were manning the grounds. The very symbol, the location and rallying point of the people that toppled the dictator Marcos was occupied by policemen who thwarted the people from praying and gathering in memory of People Power.  
 Nevertheless, we church people and others from different sectors peacefully gathered and prayed in a corner, ending the prayers with the singing of BAYAN KO. 
 
We salute the churchpeople who came for the gathering and marched towards the28279795_580524348994715_479937448567921365_n (1) People Power monument, especially the wizened women and men who despite their fragile bodies, withstood the heat of the sun and remembered with great clarity what toppling a dictator meant in Philippine history. They just grew in age, but the power of remembering did not leave them. We have a lot to learn from them – about patriotism, defending democracy and fighting for freedom.  They were with the church activists during Marcos’ Martial Law time. They fought for justice, visited those imprisoned by Marcos, offered sanctuaries to the persecuted and publicly and prophetically spoke against the evils of Martial Law. 
 
28167192_10211414212696652_4282397854630967303_nThose men and women tempered in the struggle know the many sufferings of the people and they remember too, the sacrifices of many church activists whose lives were snuffed out as they fought for freedom and democracy. They were with the poor –  in the communities of the farmers and fisherfolks and journeyed with them in their desire for abundant life. They held fast to their faith that impelled them to take sides as neutrality would lead them to nowhere. They were biased for justice and truth, a timeless teaching of our church rich based on the Biblical tradition.
 
28168789_10210813654885564_344131901391499444_nLikewise, we celebrate the energy of the youth, the young seminarians, and lay youth who heeded the reminders of the old who fought against the dictatorship. They are the millennials who defied all attempts of the unscrupulous and wicked leaders to downplay the historic power of people in ousting a dictator. They  dare to challenge   deceptive  and shameful ways of the  leaders in  the bureaucracy  who treated government position as a lucrative business venture: 
 
“They have treated the wound of my people carelessly,
    saying, “Peace, peace,”
    when there is no peace.
They acted shamefully, they committed abomination;
    yet they were not at all ashamed,
    they did not know how to blush.
Therefore they shall fall among those who fall;
    at the time when I punish them, they shall be overthrown,
says the Lord. (Jer. 8:11-12)
 
The awakened youth and seminarians are resisting the contemptuous move to erase from the pages of our history the sacrifice of those who offered their lives for the sake of others.  While the teachings of neutrality, silence, and passivity will benefit the creeping dictatorship, the churchpeople who are faithful to the teachings of our Loving GOD  and to the call of loving our NEIGHBOR would dare say, “NEVER AGAIN!”.  The apologists of the dictatorship would not permit the people to do so.
 
What happened to Marcos and Estrada is something not permitted by the state. Nevertheless, the people persisted.
  

Memoir

Ming

paining of Ming Mary Chrismina (Ming) Inco-Galera

As always, I would caress you and hug you
When you go out and when you arrive
You may not have the sweetest smell
Like privileged people who have not known our dirt
But you would always be my lovely child.
I used to dream with you: food on the table – not necessarily a feast

A good clothing when Christmas time comes
A house safe from rain and storm
A good job that would help us survive each day.
But you were taken away from me
The war on drugs has made you a fatality

 

 

You were almost home my dear
O God, you must have wept with me.

I was afraid like anyone else
That people might scorn us
For being poor, lowly and deserving to be killed
But my son, I must rise and seek for justice
I am not alone, as I see the throng of people
Rising, Crying OUT: STOP THE KILLINGS!

/rōɡque

Harry Roque’s claim that the Chinese have been given permission to explore the Philippine Rise— because no Filipino can afford the undertaking or has the expertise is not only a betrayal of the  Filipino people, but a treacherous pronouncement especially coming from the spokesperson of the President.

The Philippines Rise undersea plateau belongs to the Philippine territory as per declaration of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS)  .  The EO 25  signed by Pre. Rodrigo  Roa  Duterte states that the “Philippine Rise is “subject to the sovereign rights and jurisdiction of the Philippines pursuant to relevant provisions of the 1987 Philippine Constitution, national legislation, the UNCLOS (United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea) and applicable international law.”

The recent pronouncement of the Presidential spokesperson is so unbecoming of his office.  He is not so aware that we have dedicated and brilliant scientists. According to   Advocates of Science and Technology for the People (AGHAM),   it was the Filipino scientists who braved the deep oceans despite inadequate support and funding” from the government”.  Dr Jay L. Batongbacal  of the  University of the Philippines College of Law, and director of the UP Institute for Maritime Affairs and Law of the Sea said the  Filipinos have been exploring the Benham Rise Region for years now.

We congratulate and salute our Filipino scientists who are patriotic and nationalist, who put forward the interest of the Filipino people, and dedicate their gifts for building the nation. They are scientists who despite the many temptations of falling into the trap of corporate and market-driven economy that turns professionals into slaves of the market, they have chosen to serve the people and the country.

What prompted Roque to have made such an irresponsible statement then?  Did Roque intentionally said it and it was not just a matter of slip of tongue? Of course, a good lawyer like Roque should be very careful. But not too careful enough.  Or is it because the spokesperson of the President is beginning to broadcast a message of this government’s indebtedness and servitude to China?  The government of Duterte has entered into dangerous finance loan from China to back-up an estimated US$167 billion fund on infrastructure known as  BUILD, BUILD, BUILD, in which . Forbers online magazine contributor  Anders Corr and an analyst said China could be most likely the lender. Philippines will be deeply indebted and that expensive loans from China will put the Philippines into virtual debt bondage.

It was too good that our scientists did not rain on Roque with adobe and hollow blocks.  Our scientists are not just intellectually credible; they are decent enough to educate and remind him on the contributions of Filipino scientists in exploring the Philippine Rise. This is something that Roque should learn.

Roque once told his critics, “.Abangan n’yo po ang mga adobe at hollow blocks na itatapon ko sa inyo kaya itigil n’yo na ang pamamato,” (Watch out for adobe and hollow blocks that I will rain on you if you don’t stop your attacks.) 

 He should have asked the scientists on the impact of hollow blocks thrown by a lawyer on the people. Maybe the good scientists might give him some scientific explanation why throwing hollow blocks would reduce his power  and make him hollow.  

Flowers and Music

375001_10151604118027940_832483241_nHope is formidable POWER
It breaks darkness, releases DAWN
It ruptures the earth to blossom flowers
It straightens the bent poor and lifts up the downtrodden
It turns the grief into a cry for justice

The budding of flowers is a struggle against forgetting
As they blossom all LIFE remembers
Primordial MUSIC accompanying Creation

Flowers are not weak as some may perceive
The blooming of flowers is explosion of dreams fulfilled
Beautiful powerful and elegant
With the flowers, shall we dance in the gentle breeze
Stunning into silence nature’s contradictions

The movement of flowers are of harmony and melody
The dance of flowers with the wind and light
Is DANCE rhyming with our hearts

Let MUSIC in our time awaken us to action
Lead us to the MUSIC of people
Celebrate the burst of flowers
In the midst of tension and distress, hunger and injustice.

                                                                           

2017

IMG_20180828_1629432017 .

Even the tears can be an ink for poems and narratives
And Shouts are the echoes of a cry calling for FREEDOM
The Songs are Music not only of lullabies but melodies of protest against the TYRANT.

 

 

 

 

As I lift the pages of 2017 calendar
Squares are filled up with black red and blue ink
Schedules undending
And erasures are inevitable. One is reset on top of another
One is changed from one to another
Some were compromised, others are unattended
The ink has never run out and the pages are full
Not so much with accomplishments but
But to nourish the courage and to keep on believing ,
While oil amp is purified and filled in by the very people
Whose HOPE and Will are unbending

The struggle surges on,
The dead could no longer dream
But their deaths awakened us
The blood of poor shed on the ground
Are the same living memories of the children
Killed by Herod in his time

2017
Hope is a dangerous POWER
It breaks darkness into DAWN
It ruptures the earth to make flowers blossom
It makes the bent-over poor and the downtrodden to rise
It turns the mourning into the cry for justice

I bid goodbye to 2017
As I remember the activists, revolutionaries, the martyrs, heroes
Who gave their lives for the sake of others
Their lives define t
What  LOVE and COURAGE are.

Farewell 2017
As I turn the pages of my calendar
I thank the people who share
Their
Friendship
Kinship
Solidarity
They who share the power of
Tears
Laughter
Dance
Poetries and Music

They who cling to
The everlasting gifts of
FAITH
HOPE
&
LOVE.

2017.

 

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