You have not known what you are.
You have slumbered upon yourself all your life.
Your eyes have been as much as closed most of the time.
What you have done is already in mockeries.

The mockeries are not you.
Underneath them
And within them,
I see you lurk...

-Walt Whitman


another earth

WHAT IF the world suddenly replicates itself, that somewhere out there is another you?

in a time of memories

I LOOKED AT YOU, into you, for the last time and I think I saw it again. In your eyes was happiness that pulled the muscles around your eyes and the corners of your mouth into a smile, until you blinked and I looked away, only to hope to see it one more time in that same exact space where it lies, where your soul celebrates in a time of memories.


the love that loves us

SOMETIMES, when I think about of where my strength is coming from, in a time where there is supposed to be nothing left, I feel so overwhelmed, reminded, that I am loved by a Love that’s bigger than myself and that I am actually strong.


us against the world

WHAT MAKES A SONG nostalgic really, even when hearing it for the first time? How it pulls a string of memory deep asleep, among all others that are not yours, all tangled underneath the lyric that seems so strange but subtly talks of ‘something’ that is universal.

they're killing us

…that one time when you saw a film that made you so angry, more so at yourself for feeling so inadequate because you can’t do anything about it, that there is an illusion that it’s already a thing of the past, irrelevant, when in fact it is not. As if freedom is only a trick of light - to be free, but in truth you’re paralyzed.


to whom it may concern

I AM SO SORRY. I have enjoyed my solitude a little too much. In turn, words formed are sucked into a void in some pit of silence somewhere where they become insignificant and turn into THIS space.

of skins and satellites

I PEEL AWAY your layers, one after the other, delicately. Every contact a calculated, purposeful touch, like how a whisper would stir the still air. Your eyes say ‘you know me’ but I find only skin under your skin. Surface beneath a surface.

And now I am conflicted for every movement contradicts itself. A step forward, and then back, vacillating between possibilities reminiscent of how tides retreat back to sea only to rise on the other side of the world.

Your gravity is much too strong, drawing me in while the same force that makes me revolve around you pushes me away, in equal strength, pinning me at this particular point in space between a push and a pull. I am stationary.

You look at me from such a distance, and I look at you from such a distance - a pair of cosmic anomalies that will never become one.


what I think about when I watch you read

I LOOK AT YOU the way I would look at a still image trapped between a reality and a dream, and I realize that’s exactly where we are; floating somewhere, lost in that rhythmic beats of thought, into the edge of consciousness. You read on, fingers flipping a page, slipping in and out of this moment; I am alone at one but with you at the next. And so I look for something to anchor myself from the intermittent sudden shift, finding it at the corner of your lips where a hint of a smile lies, so faint, subtle that maybe I’m just imagining it. It’s more like an anticipation of it as you follow the chain reaction that leads to an actual full-blown smile.

Then suddenly, there it is, and your eyes brim with discovery, exhiliration, of finding something that resonates. I can almost hear it too. Your lips part and I hang on the moment, waiting for the connection, to catch the sounds that would fall out of your mouth, of words that make you so happy.

But you just read on. And I still hold my breath, still looking, still waiting for words - birds in flight that never land.



YOU don’t have to like the songs I listen or books I read, or how I enjoy dust particles dancing across a shaft of light. What I want is that you appreciate my subjectivity and I know I appreciate yours - two separate singularities colliding from the opposite edges of the universe.

the comet

YOUR SILENCE speaks volumes. For someone who overthinks, that could mean anything. And now, after a hundred of possibilities, songs in loops, and moving photographs, I have arrived to a conclusion and I think you have too. Yet I still find my ears straining for the faintest sound that will never come.


i am no poet

HOW I WISH there’s a more convenient way to express your deepest thoughts in a way that your walls remain intact, without exposing how vulnerable you really are. Like how poetry thrives in ambiguity and speaks of truths that lurk behind words, obscured from everyone but you.


there we have been

TO MEASURE your late-night walks in songs. For example, it takes three songs by Blind Pilot, Imogen Heap, and The Weepies to cover the distance between Olivarez Plaza and Napocor. Remarkable how the melancholic melodies seep into the night occasionally obscured by the sounds from a passenger jeep or bark of a dog. The evenly spaced lamp posts along the empty street, alternating light and dark. All destinations move towards home, thoughts to some secret place.


when inspiration comes

Done! I think this is the only second time I really enjoyed doing traditional art. Because I was not making it for a school requirement, or for a competition. No time limit whatsoever. I feel like my humanity is restored. Alas! I am not a robot!



SO THIS is what it feels like then? To be lost at sea and be found, anchored at some place strange, by a lighthouse. To finally give in to the current and be swept away, to this place of still waters. And you creating ripples, everywhere - soft rain disturbing the surface, ever so gently, like an autumn leaf falling slowly, lilting silently unto earth, unto me.



TULAD NG TUBIG ULAN sa dagat, ng tadhana ng alon na mabasag sa dalampasigan, tayo’y nagtagpo, magkaniig. Tubig at buhangin. 

Walang espasyong hindi napupunan ng mga salita, tula, mga gunitang lingid sa pag-inog ng mundo; 

Pabulong, sa pagitan ng bawat tibok at hininga ay pagsintang nagkukubli sa likod ng papatulog na araw.

Tulad ng alon ako’y rumagasa, basag, sa lupa, ngunit lumilipad at nasa alapaap na.


another fear

I LOOK AT YOU from this distance and for some reason, gravity tightens, lightyears shrink, compressing into a single point in time, this moment. We are so close, almost touching at the sudden shift. But like a star just above the horizon, you’re only a far-off dream, a memory echoing at the edge of my consciousness. You come to me in wavelengths, and in light. A mirage, a song from a farther room. Reason will define you as an illusion, a distorted reality. I refuse to believe that.

You’re all too real, clear, and everything else is eclipsed. It is my reality that I question as I saturate myself with your light, holding onto your every word, helplessly terrified of the first contact, skin to skin, of imploding, breaking into sparks at your feet.

when words fail us

THIS is what I fear. When words finally fail us, and they fall in some pit of silence, through some cracks, unspoken and gathering dust. They fester with the decay of time, hidden but reeking the air we breathe. We don’t know how to say them, not anymore. We have forgotten how.


don't mess with a writer

HE CAN make you bleed with just a constellation of words and you would not be able to do anything about it, inflict lacerations, ripping at surfaces where it is most painful.


free space

TO MISS YOU is to search for you in the muted colors of the day, underneath faint shadows, behind the misty summer sunlight. You are that wisp of cloud lying exactly where the day perfectly blends into night, or that lone chord - a musical phrase I hear, eyes closed, in the incessant hum of the engine of the bus I’m on. Because to miss you is too look for and find you in the most mundane of things, to sigh out an insignificant breath, desperate for your words to take in instead, deeply, until they reach that free space where I have always looked and have kept you.



I HAVE THIS IMPULSE to break you into tiny little pieces, into dust particles I would watch in wonder as they settle, slowly, in my hands. How blunt, faint is your shadow on a wall, in half-light, against the darkness that surrounds us. I find loneliness in the fact that I haven’t memorized your hands yet; these fingers longing for your fingers to fill the spaces in between. Allow me and you will linger, safe within the confines of the written word. Bask in a time when the moles on your skin will cease as stains and become the only stars I will ever see, mapping them with my own. Can you imagine how our night sky would look like? Look up. We are two universes colliding as love pulsates in every click and strain of bones. I will love you, break you, into million minute details just to paint a still and exact image of how significant and how big you really are.


of pens and permanence

I USED A PEN when I decided to love you. No touch and go. Every right, every wrong is permanent. No regrets. It’s messy, yes. But I was and am alive. I am saved knowing I have loved true.


the thief

A THOUGHT PASSES, fleetingly vivid at the edge of consciousness. The same thought passes again a few wing beats after, without consent, a thief at the peak of daylight. It keeps coming back, more urgently now. The gaps between them slowly dissolve like how cigarette smoke disintegrates into the atmosphere, like butter in warm bread. Thoughts reeling, converging into more than an abstract image, into a moment.

I think of you this way sometimes. In loops, circles to which I revolve. You moving from the edges to my very center. And I dream fully awake. That space in between conscious thoughts has never been the same since we have met.


still there. still there. gone.

Sunrises turning into sunsets. We live for these moments. Yet in the gathering darkness, I cannot get myself to look at our horizon with clear eyes.


because as long as you love, there is hope

You belong to me in at least one lifetime, within the same song, under a different sun.


on memories we burn

That's the tricky thing about memories. Those that are causing you pain are also the ones keeping you intact. You burn them out of impulse, and when there's nothing more left to burn, you set yourself on fire. Destroying yourself is only the foolproof way of erasing a memory.



STILL a faint taste of you in my mouth, indelible words I can only speak in whispers, in the dark. Meanwhile, hours’ worth of memory eggrolls in that hollow space where I have kept you. Alight, alive with emotions are the broken parts it touches only to fall in some crack somewhere. I blink and there it is again. Intact, like it has its own consciousness, a living organism beating with my own. It spins, rolls, bounces off my walls like a twisted game of pinball that I keep playing over and over and over again. I look at my watch. Still broken. All I have, I realize, is time and too many coins.