Wednesday, January 29, 2014

“My fault, my failure, is not in the passions I have, but in my lack of control of them.” 

-Jack Kerouac

Kiss me hard before you go

"Sometimes when I'm face to face with an awful truth and a harsh slap of reality hits me on the cheek, I just close my eyes till I feel the sides of my eyes scrunch into a crease that it starts to hurt. It's with that white knuckling feeling that I let myself remember that I'd rather accept the idea that it is actually real. It's not a sign of giving up, indifference or apathy. I do that because I'd rather not have someone else's blood on my hands and shirt. Don't push my hand any further. A man can only take so much."

Monday, January 27, 2014

fairy tales

JANUARY 24, 2014
"“If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.”
― Albert Einstein
“Fairy tales do not tell children the dragons exist. Children already know that dragons exist. Fairy tales tell children the dragons can be killed.”
― G.K. Chesterton
“Fear isn’t so difficult to understand. After all, weren’t we all frightened as children? Nothing has changed since Little Red Riding Hood faced the big bad wolf. What frightens us today is exactly the same sort of thing that frightened us yesterday. It’s just a different wolf.”
― Alfred Hitchcock
“Deeper meaning resides in the fairy tales told to me in my childhood than in the truth that is taught by life.”
― Friedrich von Schiller
— I think what a lot of people fail to realize is that fairy tales are about emotional truths. No one reads a fairy tale and thinks that they may literally have to slay an ogre, or steal the golden goose, or wear out seven pairs of iron shoes and dress in a thousand furs to find the prince, but some people criticize them, saying this is unrealistic, this is all there is to the tale. Put a little thought into it. In your life, you may not have to climb mountains to find the home of the north wind, but you might have to ask someone intimidating for help. You may never have to trick the wicked prince into looking into the glass-filled barrel, or the witch into peering into the oven, but you might have to sacrifice someone else’s comfort for your own wellbeing. Your mother might not be wicked, but sometimes you’ll be angry with her. You might not be turned into a Beast, but sometimes it feels like there’s nothing about you worth loving. Fairy tales remind you of that. They remind you that there are troubles and trials, and that this is normal. It is the way of things, and you’ll come through it. (via batbcomic)

Sunday, January 26, 2014

“The journey of every human soul is to come back home.”

Confusion, getting lost, wanting to be lost, futile effort to find a way back and even more. As I realized, the road to life is not something that can be put in some sort of map. There are no cartographers to graph and scale life or put color-schemed lines to distinguish life’s service roads and the off-beaten paths. It sounds cliché and tacky but we have to be our own maps. We have to be the compass to point our own directions.

You don’t travel life, you just walk and walk until you reach a place that is not familiar to the eyes. You have to walk and walk and hope that life lets you pass on that road where you’re going. Some roads are just closed, you have to turn back and trace your steps. And then there are some that you have to hack your way through dense foliage and maybe earn a couple of cuts and bruises as you stumble and flail with rubber legs from emotional and physical exhaustion. Some of those tiring moments will come in the form of an empty bottle or even a written letter that just realized your darkest and most realistic fears. You don’t travel life, you just hope that life lets you pass through.

Walk, run, ride, hitch, climb, slide, crawl – do what you must to travel. See the world in the eyes of another blue-collar man, in the forgiving and hopeful eyes of a development worker, in the clear-eyed vision of an illustrious but promising law student, in the glassy eyes of a lover who sees you as the most beautiful thing on earth (or someone else for that matter). In the eyes of a father who labors day and night while he wrestles his inner demons just to stay sane, in the eyes of a mother who, for the longest time had always wanted to feel the affection of her child, in the eyes of a smitten girl who’s laid her eyes on the man she always aspired to sweep her off her feet, in the eyes of another person of a different nationality who has a culture that is widely different from yours but is of the same substance that you know he’s a kindred spirit.

Go thousands of miles away from home not in an effort to abandon home but to find people and places that will inspire you. Go to places that are far from your comfort zone to test your mettle, to feel that you are strong even just for a while. Go and experience events that will humanize you and let you feel that you are but one speck in a colossal universe. Go and be that significant speck in someone’s life. Go and be the feathered creature that finds its way home – tired, beaten, awakened but hopeful and longing for the comfort of home. Go and be a home for others.

I’ve travelled but not far. I’ve met some of the greatest people that have become such treasured gifts. We have shared bottle after bottle of sauced discussions and debates. We have gotten our hands dirty with food that signified failures and sweet triumphs with every greasy cut of salted pork and charred day-old skin. And from those meetings I am learning, I am being mentored to a degree, I am being schooled without having to pay for tuition.

Then the discussion came full circle. It was a buzzed moment from me and I was starting to have the burning in my cheeks from the scotch that we were enjoying in a cool Philippine afternoon. We were in the city. It was bright out be it was not sticky to the skin. I snapped some pictures outside but here I am again inside the confines of a cool room with a slight buzzing in my head and a faint blush on my cheeks and right ear. We struck the subject “home.” We all agreed without even talking, even without glancing at each other. We know that during that time, it was home. It was that moment that was home. I’ve always believed that home was not a place. It was not a matter of proximity. Home was with people who mattered. For that instance, we couldn’t help but smile and cherish the moment of home that we revelled in. We took a swig of the golden brown firewater and fed the weak flame in our guts that was starting to smoke and flicker. We were home. We just knew it.

I, on the other hand pointed out that I had a home far from the room where we spent the cool afternoon talking and laughing. I said that I missed my home and I hoped she missed me, too. I’m not trying to be narcissistic with this as I write it. It’s just that I do really miss home. “The journey of every human soul is to come back home” caught my half-conscious attention. His brother believed in it fervently. I couldn't blame the man. I wrote it down and I promised to write about it. I’ll always believe in the idea of swallows and how they come home even after thousands of miles out in the open skies. They come back to the nest they grew up in regardless of how many other nests they have visited on their travels. They come full circle. I believe in that wholeheartedly. Semper Fidelis read his brother’s tattoo. I want a tattoo of my own.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Monday Moodboard: Bookstore Anxiety

I just received word from the bookstore that I visited not two weeks ago that the book I had reserved just hit the shelf. It was excitement and anxiety rolled into one.

I was looking for Lang Leav’s poetry book titled “Love and Misadventure” for the past two weeks. I had just known that she was looking for it since August last year and I was surprised that she was into poetry books at all. Maybe I still had a ton to know about her. She and I have been friends for a lot of years and it’s time I give back something to let her know that she’s special to me, too.
Photo by northwardnimbus
The moment I got the message, I immediately replied and told them that I was going to pick it up first thing in the morning. I did, although I got to the bookstore in the afternoon. I found myself running or if not, walking briskly to get to the store as fast as I could. I was sweating. The bulbous cold drops of sweat were clinging on my forehead. I was anxious alright.
The book was actually published by Lang Leav upon seeing that the Tumblr posts she put up quickly gained popularity on the Internet. Her poetry and short prose posts generated hundreds of notes that turned into hundreds of thousands. Love and Misadventure is a book about love and loss. Leav’s simple approach to poetry and the focus on the topic of love became easily identifiable to lots of people who read her posts on Tumblr.
She published the book and it was a hit. It must be really good that my friend actually wanted to buy it. As I said earlier, she was not one to be quickly hooked on poetry. The book must be special or the memory that gets her to want to read it. It made me curious but a lot more anxious since I wanted to give her a gift that she’d actually like, especially since it’s almost her birthday in two months.
“It’s so dark right now, I can’t see any light around me.
That’s because the light is coming from you. You can’t see it but everyone else can.”
- Lang Leav, Love and Misadventure
And as soon as I got to the store, I talked to the attendant and told her that I was there for the book. She courteously nodded and told me to wait for a while as she fetched the book. There it was, a slim red book with a pensive illustration up front. There was no denying that my friend was in love. I was happy for her and quickly paid for the book and said thank you to the polite lady at the counter.
The book was placed inside a brown paper bag bearing the name of the bookstore. I held it in my right hand and noticed my palm mark on the bag. I was sweating again. Anxiety. You sly dog, you.

Monday, January 20, 2014

LomoLit: Coffee Stains

Here's another short story I wrote for work. Original article can be found here.

“I want to belong to the table of Salinger, Steinbeck, Hemingway and Kerouac” said Gavin out of the blue. His dark brown eyes were as wide as the looming moon that beamed its mild glow on us.

We were at the convenience store when he blurted that out. I was buying cigarettes and he was chewing gum after downing an acidic and steaming cup of brewed coffee. He said the coffee was “good, not great but still good.”

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Friday, January 17, 2014

“When you forgive, you love. And when you love, God’s light shines upon you.”
-Jon Krakauer, Into the Wild

Thursday, January 16, 2014


You are the cold, my love.
You are the lingering feeling in the morning when I get out of bed.
You are the breeze that blisters my skin.
You are the freezing feeling in my palms. The overstaying frost that numbs my fingers.
I’ll always remember you when it is cold.
Not because we are frigid memories.
You are not the bad side of the cold night.
But you are the memory hiding beneath every icy chill in the mountains.
I remember you in the cold because we were never afraid of it.
We warmed each other during the moments when everything has frozen but us.
Our memory lingers in the cold even when we stutter to say the words that we long to hear.
We are the other side of the cold – forgiving and understanding.
You are the cold, my love.
I remember you in the cool moments of the day. I can’t escape you.
It’s not the bad things of the cold that remind me of you.
What I’ll always want is to be the blanket you wrap yourself with at night.
Pallid as our memories may, we will never be truly gone.
For the cold is always present. My palm will bear your memory.
If the rain reminds you of me then I hope it rains every time I’m with you.
It’s in those fleeting drops that I’d want to reside today and tomorrow.

You are the cold, my love. 

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

New discovery

It's better to feel pain, than nothing at all
The opposite of love's indifference
So pay attention now, I'm standing on your porch screaming out
And I won't leave until you come downstairs

I can't stand the thought of another talking to you sweet, my dear.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Don't patronize me.

Turn down the lights,
Turn down the bed,
Turn down these voices, inside my head.

Lay down with me,
Tell me no lies,
Just hold me close, don't patronize me
Don't patronize me.

Cause I can't make you love me
If you don't
You can't make your heart feel
Something it won't
Here in the dark
These final hours
I will lay down my heart
I feel the power but you don't
No, you don't

Cause I can't make you love me, If you don't.

If you don't,
No you won't,

I close my eyes
I won't see
The love you don't feel
When you're holding me
Morning will come and I'll do what's right
Just give me til then to give up this fight
And I will give up this fight

Monday, January 13, 2014

I do.

I want to wear your love on my head like a crown.

I want your embrace to wrap around me like armor.

I want you to take me in with your mouth that speaks of great love.

I want to put a ring on your finger like the halo that is cast around the bright moon tonight.

I want you to bear my name not because I conquered or own you but because it’s the only thing left to do.

I want you to be the end of me.

I want nothing else.

I want you.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

LomoLit: Carpeted Sky on New Year

It was nearing New Year when I confessed what I really felt for you. Only I didn’t have words for it, I just stuck with you like glue.

Photo by mafiosa
The cold was biting but bearable. Wind chills are getting the best out your blouse with repeating micro blossoms. I can always remember how young we both looked like. You were beautiful with a wispy glow, you retained that look while I, on the other hand can’t even go near that level.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Memento Mori

Time for my laundry list again.

I'm fascinated by the fact that we're just wandering carbon-based organisms here in this world. We're all going to die. That's a fact and when that time comes for me I'd be smiling. Although, if there was no end to this lifetime, these are the things that I'd probably want to do on repeat for the next 5,000 years or the next or the next.

1. Kiss her forehead and smell her hair everyday.

2. Tell her how beautiful she is today and eternity.

3. Hold her hand and smell the scent of her soft supple skin.

4. Stare at her until she scrunches her forehead and nose as she wonders if there's dirt on her face.

5. Share hearty meals with her and our little big man, say grace while we all hold hands.

6. Think about how tomorrow will turn out even if I know it's going to be the same beautiful routine again.

7. Write her a new poem and read it to her until it makes her tear up a bit or laugh since I'm not a poet.

8. Lie on bed as we talk about our story and laugh at the funnier times.

9. Sit still as I hug her from behind. Kiss her if she lets me.

10. Write the many things I can't do tomorrow since I have to do the same beautiful things with her and our son again.

I'm far from death although I'm farther away from repeating this for a life time. If only I could live a script that I've written. But that would'nt count. It's a fake reality. I'd choose a sad but real now than a perceived happy tomorrow any time of the day.

Hello, time off.
Be still.

Keep quiet.


This will all be over, soon.

Monday, January 6, 2014

I should..

I'm writing this, with just my boxers on, sweat trickling from my nape and forehead as I nurse a semi-bad case of hangover. I had a bad night last night. It's a good thing there are still people who care. I have to write this now before it escapes me. I have to let out would-bes that are devastating for me. This is my laundry list.

I always don't have words for the more important things and people in my life. Having said that, I think that I've failed as a writer in the most basic sense. And that, in turn shows that I've failed in being an appropriate partner. In short, I have failed.

But the little angel at my right shoulder keeps telling me that I should start now. I should start writing for people I love instead of just creating copy for the company I work for. Indeed, I should.

1. I should've said "I love you" everyday in a love letter.

Yes. I should have. You may not accept it but that's what I feel. I just want to stare at your face when I'm with you and be impolite like that. I can't help it. I just love you in every way.

2. I should've told you that you were beautiful.

No, it should be said like "You're beautiful, not just now, last week when you wore that black dress or yesterday when you were dolled up for an event. You look beautiful. You are beautiful and I can't help but stare. I don't believe in telling you that you lookED beautiful. I know that each time I see you, you'll be at your most beautiful. And I will always whisper that to you each time I can."

3. I adore you in every way.

Sweeping me off my feet is one thing, making me adore you time and time again is another. You're strong. You're faithful. You're everything that I am not and that leads me to number four...

4. You inspire me.

You inspire me to be good. You inspire me to be better. You inspire me to give more love as you've given me.

5. I will never get tired of you.

We fight. That's what we do. That's us. Some will say that it's not healthy and that we should try looking at different directions altogether. I say, fuck off. It sucks to be far away and that I'm not there to make you feel everything I have for you but I won't get tired. I'll work my hands to the nub if I have to. I'll never stop working. We are better than this. Please don't let people tell you otherwise.

I have lots more to say. I hope that you'd just put that phone down and listen. I miss you.


Outright, the word sounds like it’s part of a bourgeois plan to make the lower classes feel inferior. The word itself is reserved. You spare the use of privilege. As a writer, it’s a game that you play when you’re creating ideas for your next piece. You just give priority to some works among others, even if it means sitting long hours on a chair right in front of your screen to squeeze the juices out of each brain cell you’ve got. Privilege is a strong word. You don’t give everyone your best.

Love is a privilege. You give love to people but I believe that not everyone deserves the best kind of love. There is love that you give out openly as a gesture. I hate the fact that people nowadays throw “I love you” the way that fast food chains are giving our discount coupons. You get what you deserve when it comes to love. You put in time, tears and sacrifice to make love happen. It’s a foul thing to give away love right off the bat. It’s an investment.

Sounds selfish, right? No, it’s not. You give people the privilege of loving them not just because you want to but because that’s what is due. You don’t go around asking for love from people who peddle cheap thrills just to feel a spark. Be in it for the long haul. I love you is a powerful word. Give it if you mean it. Don’t half-ass it. Love is a privilege. You keep it to yourself until someone worthy is ready to hold it for you and nurture it. It will be a long and tedious task but it will be worth it. You know it’s worth it. A higher being planned it for you.

Privilege is a gift. When you receive something from a special person in your life, you know that it’s special too. You get a warm feeling in your body and a tingling sensation from the back of your neck to your ears. It creeps up slowly and delectably satisfies your physical being. You don’t give random people the privilege to hold your hand, whisper sweet nothings in your ear or the side of your bed even if it’s cold and longing for a warm body to make it toasty and comfortable. You make people work for it. Cheap thrills are nothing but empty words and physical promises. As I said earlier, you don’t love people just because they’re there. It goes the other way around, don’t let people get the feeling that they love you just because you’re around. Be smarter than that. Don’t be a scorecard for stolen kisses, hidden agenda and physical urges. Don’t be another notch in someone’s belt. You’re special, it’s a privilege to love you and care for you.

You’re special. It’s a privilege to have you. Maybe, in some other time you’ll realize everything and go back being the lovely flower that shows itself only when the right time comes. As the moonlight beams on the dew on your petals, remember that you hide things that are precious. You don’t give the satisfaction to people who just want to be there when it happens. As fate would have it, you’re someone’s gift. Someone keeps you precious during a time when nothing matters to you but the feeling that you exist. Would you rather exist in the lives of a trivial many than be the most prized privilege of a chosen few? I’d choose the latter any minute.

It’s a privilege to have you. Your tender smiles and loving looks are ingrained in memory. Your beautiful glassy brown eyes don’t betray you. They don’t give out feelings when you don’t want them to show. Those soft supple hands are instruments of love and care. Each touch is like a tender reminder of love. Your words are precious and they leave a mark when you like to. Your love is precious and kind. You know better than this. You’re a privilege. Act like it, you deserve nothing less. Don’t pass it around like it’s a collection basket. You don’t want spare change. You don’t need spare love.