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Posts Tagged ‘migrant literature’

Green Dreams
Armineonila M.

I lost your grip
in the thunderstorm, and you,
likewise, lost mine
under the dragon’s breath –
a huge firewall stood
between us – a dead end’s curse,
cirrus clouds loomed
from a distance tainting
the sun’s rays, no illuminated path
the rainbow’s bend dared
deny us a destination.


Lunhaw
Tagalog translation by a friend

Nawala ko ang iyong kapit
nang bumagyo’t nagrilim, at ikaw,
ganoon din, nabitawhan kita
sa lilim ng dambuhalang hininga –
‘sang ga-bituing pader ang poder
nating sangga – sumpang sadya,
malabalahibong ulap ng kilabot
mula sa di-kalayuan ang lumimlim
sa mga sinag ng araw,
naglaho ang daang matuwid
arko ng balangaw ang tumindig
upang ipagkait sa atin ang tagpuan.

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Desert Song
by Armineonila M.

Oh dune,
what’s your alignment
in this arduous soil?
Do roaring decibels
mount your tongue
in the tune of a death march
to squeeze
unto undying armour of hope?
I eat the eyes that swallow you;
corrupt the minds which comfort you;
to feel how much you have grown
short; as stallions’ scavenged zone.
Only as my heart reached harbour
that you planted scimitars here under
your fertile breath, that’s weaving
some tapestry of arid thoughts.
Must I kill the spirits
that breed these lines,
or feed them again
with vintage spoons?
Still,
furnish me an oasis
of aged moons
or sit me amidst
oriental halls
and potent walls,
stirred by obscure hands
from afar.
Let me move at dwarf’s length
to peer at your window
like you peer at mine;
so together, we watch
winged royalties in the sky;
flapping away imported dust
chewed on modern lips
that taste of strange champaign
which poisons the caverns within.
Oh, dune,
upon my frowning lamp
did I meet your faded ornaments;
but let me caress the hollows of your soul
and dent my mind
into you, for once,
as you rouse deep in my skin,
while I glare at your exotic eye
piercing through
my
ignorance.

Published:

Best Poems Encyclopedia, October 2010.
Pag-usapan Po Natin Magazine, Kuwait Philippines Cultural Center, September 2011, p. 7.

____________

Arguing in the Oilfields Again
by Wilfred Waters

We are arguing in the oilfields again.
Not about oil.
About the environment.
The arguments are not so bad this time.
Some have been cataclysmic.
Their guy and our guy going at it like
One Full Metal Jacket drill instructor trying to train another.

Somehow I’m okay with all the
Trauma though.
I always have this reassurance
In the back of my mind
That it’s good we’re taking this so seriously
It ticks all the boxes,
This project,
For living my life as a civil dissident

Doing environment work
In the second largest oil field in the world
Amongst all the gas flares
The burn pits
Spewing forth their black plumes
A kilometre away
Feels like just the right amount of arrogance and audacity.

Was this same sense of
Satisfaction
In the mind of
The man murdered
Over dinner
On the Wara Project in the south last week?

From Korea,
An engineer,
What liberated the mind of the man who stabbed him
From the rationality rammed into it for years
Making every judgement of his subject
To a rational, objective, evidence based approach?
Was it the incessant,
Sand drenched wind?
The kamikaze traffic so
Wildly unregulated compared to the
Military precision of intersections
Back home?

Did this sense of unreality
Lead him away from the restraints
He confronted in normal argument?
Surely yes he wasn’t the only one who thought of stabbing the other
In a heated moment

How would the man stabbed
Have occupied his dying moments?
With thoughts of disbelief
That an argument over
Food had lead to this?
With thoughts perhaps that
He shouldn’t’ve wished he
Could die today because life
Here anyway was just about impossible?
That the work of 3 that one man,
He
Was forced to do without pay for
Overtime
Was another pile of
Meaninglessness?

Whatever went through the minds
Of these two men needs
To not remain a secret

One stabbed another to
Death in an argument
Over the quality of food

No arguments
Support descent into such
Barbarity
The true barbarity here
Then may have been
The conditions they confronted
And our willingness to ignore its effects.

Published:

TravelPod, December 17, 2013.

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