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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Katapusang Pa-Adios ni Jose Rizal in Aklanon

Katapusang Pa-Adios
(Mi Ultimo Adios)
ni Dr. Jose Rizal translated to Aklanon
ni Benigno Macavinta y de Miguel

Editor’s Note: To commemorate the 112th death anniversary of the Philippines National Hero, Dr. Jose P. Rizal, Madyaas Pen is publishing his “Mi Ultimo Adios”. This Aklanon version was translated by the late Benigno Macavinta y de Miguel who was better known as “Lolo Bingo”. He was born in Marianos, Numancia, Aklan on February 13, 1881 and died in Albasan, Numancia, Aklan on August 1, 1966. This Aklanon translation is voluntarily furnished The Madyaas Pen by Atty. Emmanuel C. Fernandez, a retired ambassador. According to him, the text came from Ms. Elizabeth Atanacio Macavinta, the grand daughter of the late Lolo Bingo. Elizabeth now lives in Manila.

see this link for the complete translation.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

To the Young Writer

I am reprinting here a lecture given by Mr. Jose. it is an advice to the young writer. I hope that our Aklanon writers will benefit from this article from a famous Filipino novelist.

by F. Sionil Jose, National Artist in Literature

In a moral crisis such as what grips the country today when a handful of Congressmen betray the people’s trust in obedience to their powerful leader, what can the ordinary Filipino do? What can a writer do?

The German writer Stefan Heym, who lived through Nazism and East Germany’s communist regime, had this advice: “The writer’s duty is to survive.”

“What,” I asked, “if survival mean acquiescence or surrender.”

“Then,” he replied, “survival is also a test to his moral strength.”

Do our writers today have that strength? Every so often, when I am asked by young writers for advice, this is what I tell them:

Memory and sentiment are never enough. You must master the craft of writing and use the language you know best—respect the word and know the rules before you break them. Having mastered the word, use it then as one would create a window—polished, untarnished, so that you can see clearly beyond the crystal. Don’t cover the frame with frills and fancy drapes for it is these decorations that will attract, and hide the view. Review, revise, rewrite till it hurts, till the land that holds the pen is numb, till every sentence reads easily, every word in place and you know by then that the window is made.

You are a storyteller, a singer—so learn rhythm, music, resonance, narrative technique, until these are in your marrow. You can learn all these by writing letters, notes, exercises, journals. The concert pianist, that prima ballerina—every day they practice and limber up before they go on stage.

Do not be waylaid by the latest literary fads, by unfashionable ideologies. They will surely pass as unremembered seasons and what will remain are those verities—love and death, faith and forbearance, which you have made permanent in prose. Look at your craft with humility, and be your own severest critic. Do not for once believe that ancient panegyric that the pen is mightier than the sword. Nunca! It is always naked power which triumphs and rules, against which you must always rail till your voice hoarsens. Beware, too, of early praise for it can destroy, and remember again that only time will tell if your work will prevail.

Write with all your senses, and some of your ulcers working, so that what you write will throb with life. Live, be observant, be the eternal child aglow with awe and wonder of the world, amass memories for they will all be retrieved as dialogue, color, plot, action.

Ask yourself, what in literature, who is your audience. Literature is the noblest of the arts and writers should, therefore, be of noble bearing, affirming in their very lives the Socratic precepts of virtue and excellence. This is difficult to achieve; perhaps, it is enough that you strive to be able to sleep soundly at night without the nightmares of a bad conscience.

Be an honest witness to your times, and be strong when they revile you for telling the truth. Your vocation will also condemn you to solitude, but remember—he who stands alone is the strongest. Even in your shattering loneliness, remember you are writing, not for critics, academics, or other writers, but for your own people who, in their silence and perhaps poverty, cannot express their aspirations and anguish. You are their voice but only if you have not deserted or betrayed them.

Whatever suffering might be heaped upon you, never, never lose your equanimity, your humor. Much of what you write will be bleak—just the same, learn to laugh at yourself first, and your critics, and certainly at the antics of the wretched, among your countrymen.

Nurture in yourself that abiding sense of urgency, of passion—deep and volcanic—but always keep it in control and with it, that profound melancholy wrought by our history, by our own leaders—no matter how effulgent our fiestas and how bright our smiles. This passion, this melancholy, must surface as literature if you are to be an artist. So Lenin said all art is propaganda, but remember, not all propaganda is art.

I make writing seem difficult because it really is. Worse, it may not even make you live comfortably, and you will grow old like so many of us who tried without ever being appreciated in your own country. Just look at all those books piled in bargain counters—nobody buys them for though we have a novelist as a national hero, we do not read novels.

Why then must you write at all? Do it because there is so much hypocrisy and cussedness in us and, who knows, you may be able to exorcise a bit of these. Do it because many of us have lost our moorings, and it is in literature where history lives, where we can know ourselves best so that we can live ourselves and be rooted again in native soil. Do it because it is a vocation which will give you such pleasure, so lasting and so deep—it transcends anything those sybarites and sensualists covet. I assure you, this old man knows.

What, after all, is literature but pain remembered. In remembering, we adorn it with our imagination, our craftsmanship, ennobling it perhaps, imbuing it with permanence; it then exists beyond our puny lives, a testament to your humanity for all the world to witness. And having witnessed it, it is out hope that what we have written will evoke compassion, for in the end, this is what draws all men together.

One final word: write wherever you can do it best, in exile perhaps, but never, never leave your village, your town, your beginning. Enshrine it in the heart, sanctify it in your mind for your beginning gives you your soul, your humanity. In remembering with passion, you will be writing about a particular place and a particular people but you shall have given them also what all men will recognize, the universality of man and of art itself.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Hope Sabanpan-Yu's Poems

The following poems were written originally in Cebuano by a young charming Cebuano poet, Hope Sabanpan-Yu. I based my Aklanon translation from her book: Mga Dad-onon sa Biyahe/Things to Take on a Journey. Canada: Sunflower Press, 2003.

Mga Daeahon Sa Pagpanaw
Ni Hope Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni

ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Maeara
December 12, 2008

Sa malarosas ngarang kahayag
Daehon kita
Igto sa may baybay

Nga akon, igto maeapit
Sa maisot nga pantalan
Gahagunos ro dagat

Sa bilog nga adlaw
Ginahakos ro baybay
May asin ro hangin

Ag ano kaeab-as,
Sa huna-huna
Nga ginadaea ku rayang gahuyang-huyang nga baroto

Dali! Masakay eon kita.

Makaron eon ro oras nga kita makapangisda
Maeayo pa, pero ro mga bisaea
Hay gaeutaw halin sa kidadawman



Owa't Gabii Makaron
ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Maeara

Ro pagtum-ok it kainit
Ku eawas
King likod
Hay ro kadaeum nga gapahaom
Kang eawas
Sa katre.

Owa't gabii makaron.



ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Maeara
December 14, 2008

Tipunon ko tanan ro mga manami nga berde it kalibutan
Halimunon it tigbueoeak
Daho't mansanas nga nagabayle-bayle
Ro matam-is nga berde't pino
Oliba para sa martini
Lato agod kilawon
Hilaw nga mangga agod i-ensalada

Tipunon ko tanan ro mga manami
Humot, bag-ong tubong ugbos
Para kimo


Rang Pagtikang-tikang sa Kada Agahon
ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Maeara
December 14, 2008

Makaron nga nagtugpa eon ro niyebe sa eugta
Rang pagtikang-tikang sa kada agahon

Nagbutyag it disenyo sa harden
Nga owa ko kunta masayri:

Ro kakahuyan ag mga sangang ginpunihan it yelo
Ro pinong kahayag it pagbuskad

Ag maintok nga pinongpong nga mga bueak

Gakaging rang ilong sa kaeamig
Apang iya sa kakahuyan

Nagduhong rang mga siki
Ro makangawangawa nga letrato

Ku rayang mga tanom sa ibabaw it niyebe
Nagtao’t kainit kakon.



ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Maeara
December 14, 2008

Nahueog ro adlaw pareho ku magueang nga uyas
Dungan sa pagbuead ku bueawanong kolor
Sa pihak ku nagakangitngit
Nga asul
Owa’t gasaut sa hilamon, dahon o bituon
Kalinong eang
Iya sa tunga ku raying higayon
Iya kita
Kalinong eang
Sa nasayran naton ngarang oras
Ag sa oras nga owa pa naton masayri.


Imaw ra nga gabyahe ako

Ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Maeara
December 15, 2008
Sent Dec. 15, 2008

Imaw ra nga gabyahe ako
Agod magbugtaw sa maeamig nga pagtueo't niyebe
Agod makakita it linaw nga gaduhong sa anang katin-awan
Agod mahawanan ro mga pagduha-duha
Sa idaeom it mga bituon, mahimong eangit
Agod magtinong sa mabahoe nga kaeaparan ag mahueog
Sa madaeum nga handom nga maguwa sa parte ngarang kalibutan
Agod makabaeay it binaeaybay ag madumduman rayang
Obra nga indi maobra't oman
Imaw ra nga mauli ako.



Ro madueaw nga oras
Nagpanaog sa anang kataason
Nag-inumoe ro eugta
Nag-eambong it mga eumot ro bato

Binira kita ag ginhakos
Hasta mabatyagan ko
Ro pagpanghayhay nga owa’t katapusan.


Naghigugma Ako't Oman
ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Maeara
December 17, 2008

Naghigugma ako't oman
Sa pagduot sa imong dagang*

Sa pihak kang hawak
Gasaut ra kakon

Owa maghalin sa panumduman
Kundi sa pag-usisa

Ring ueo hay puno it adlaw
Eon man, permi ag permi

Nabatyagan ko ring kaugot
Pero bukon eo't ako ring kaakig

Kundi isaea sa mga sawa nga gabais
Sa kataeagman it rason.

*There is no Aklanon native term for pen. It has pluma but this is Spanish in origin. Since there is this Cebuano term for the pen, I used it.


ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Maeara
December 18, 2008

Ginisi ko dayon ro sobre
Ag nagkaeahueog

mga maintok
nga kasingkasing

sa kobrekama

namueak it pueang rosas
ro puting saeog

Makara kon ako magsilibrar
ku akong kaakig--
ro pagtuktok ku imong binaeaybay
sa mga pahayag
nga eabaw pa sa matuod:

mga pueang rosas ikaw
pasinsya ako sa
nagbasoe nga paila*
ginahigugma ko ayaw
kasingkasing maakig

* I cannot at the moment get the exact meaning of this term, so I used its original word.


Paagto sa Katueogon
ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Maeara
December 18, 2008

Matueog eon ako
Ay una eon ro buean
Agod magbantay katon
Mas mahimuok pa ro atong tueog
Ku sa mga nagakatueog eon
Owa't eabot sa mga kuyapnit
Nga naga-eupad-eupad sa mga oras ngara
O sa mga tuko
Nga indi maghipos
Pareho ku suksok

Eantip gid
Ro gabii ngara
Ag buko't aeang-aeang
Eantip gid sa paghueag-hueag
It bukaw


Ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Melchor F. Cichon
December 18, 2008

Pinanitan mo ro kahil
Pareho ku una natong paghambaeanay
Igto sa airport
Kun siin mo ginaobrahan ro kada tinum-ok nga bisaea
Ro matam-is nga kahumot
Nga nagpaeupok ku pilang kalibutan
Hanungod katong daywa.

Bisaea sa imong baba
ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Melchor F. Cichon

Gusto kong mahimong bisaea sa imong baba
Bisaea nga gusto mo gid iambit

Gusto kong maeutaw
Masaka ag manaog sa hangin

Magpakli sa mga pinanig king libro
Gusto ko magsueod sa inang pagginhawa

Kon ro mga bisaea
Hay mas eabaw pa sa ginahandum mo

Ibubo mo ako sa mga pinanig ngaron
Paeutawa ako hasta maeumutan ro tinta

Hayyyyy! Ring pagsueat
Ro malig-on nga impresyon

Ro malibunog mong agi
Ro maeumo nga pagsaka.


ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Melchor F. Cichon
December 18, 2008

Nahueog kita
Pareho ku mga dahon sa tigtaeagas

Sa idaeum it kakahuyan
Nageapta sa ibabaw it eayang hilamon

Nagahubeas nga nagaatubang
Sa naduyog nga adlaw

Ro mga matang nagatueok sa kaeangitan
Nagatan-aw kon may sinyales it pagkadueom

Nagahueat sa anang pag-angkon
Ku rayang tigtaeagas

Ag ro atong pagkahueog
Halin sa kahayag.


ni Hope Sabanpan-Yu
Gin-Inakeanon ni Melchor F. Cichon
Decemeber 19, 2008
Gatan-aw ako ku mga pinuno't maribuhok
Nga ginapabuga-tan ku niyebe
Kon mabali gid man ra sanga
Tunlon ron ku kaeamigon
Sa anang pagkahueog.

Gatan-a ako sa hinayhinay nga pagtindog
Ag mga baeay-baeay nga yelo
Mga marka sa anang pagduaw
Maapeod nga kaeamig
Mga tueok nga puti
Ag mga matig-ang yuhum
Sa mainit nga mga panamgo.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Short Stories by John Barrios


Ni John Barrios

Indi masayran ni Ano kon ham-an owa gapoepamisok ro itsura nga gaatubang kana. Owa gahibayag. Kon magsinggit gani si Ano sa sakit kon ginadresingan do anang gasgas nga uyahon owa man it reaksiyon. Basta una man lang imaw gatueok kay Ano. Una man lang imaw nga gabantay kay Ano.

‘No magpakabuot ka, pirmi nga hambae kana ni nanay na kada ihatod imaw ni tatay na sa traysikol paagto sa andang eskuylahan. Huo, Nay, pirmi man nana nga sabat. Masueondon nga unga si Ano. Imaw ro kamanghuran sa limang magmanghod. Propesyunal eon haeos ro anang mga magueang. Maliban kay Ogie nga second year college sa PMA. Si ano hay grade five.

Si nanay na hay miyembro it karismatik. Kada Domingo ga-attend imaw it andang “gathering” sa Aklan College Gym. Kon amat hay ginadaea nana si Ano. Sang beses kat nakamunot si ano nakakita imaw it andang ginatawag nga “healing session” kon siin nakita nana ro pagkurog-kurog ag pagkalipong it sangka tawo nga ginpangadian it mga miyembro. Kat gauli eon sanda ginpangutana nana si nanay na kon ham-an nagmakato ro natabu sa eaki nga andang ginpalibutan ag ginpangadian. Ginsudlan imaw it Diyos Espirito, sabat ni nanay na. Ro dato nga natabu hay nagpapati kay Ano kon ano kagamhanan ro Diyos. Bisan sa anang pagkatueog ko gabii ngaron indi pa gihapon maduea sa anang painu-ino ro natabu. Sa anang damgo nakita nana ro eaki nga gin-healing. May pakpak nga puti ag ginasampit imaw nga sumunod kana. Nagpasugot imaw nga magsunod ugaling sa pagbuyot nana sa alima it eaki naduea ro eaki. Nabugtaw si Ano nga ro anang tuong alima hay nakabuyot sa siki it lamesita sa anang kuwarto.

Kada mag-agi si Ano sa atubang it kapilya gapanguros imaw. Hambae ni nanay na, ro tawo nga gapanguros kada mag-agi sa atubang it kapilya hay mapahilayo sa disgrasya. Ro Diyos hay mangin mabuot kana. Bukon it kangawa-ngawa sa painu-ino ni Ano kon ham-an haeos tanan nga gaaeagi sa kapilya hay gapanguros.

Ku nagtaliwan eang nga Domingo hay mapagsik pa si Ano. Eksayted imaw dahil pahilangupon ro anang bertdey ag ginpromisahan imaw ni tatay na nga bak-ean it BMX nga bisikleta. Imaw eang ro owa it bisikleta sa andang mag-aeamigo. Kon magsaeampitan hay gaangkas eang imaw kay Jojie. Masadya ro andang grupo dahil kon owa it klase hay ga-bike sanda paagto sa Lambingan o sa Tambak. Kon amat hay gapaibang banwa sanda. Haagtunan eon nanda ro Makato, ro Lezo, ag ro Banga. Bisan bukid ngani ginasaka nanda. Ku sang beses ngani ginsamitan nanda nga sakyan ro andang bike papanaog halin sa ibabaw it Manduyog.

Gaumapaw nga kalipay ro habatyagan ni Ano pagkakita nana it anang BMX nga may higot pa nga pueang ribbon. Dali-dali nana nga ginsakyan ag ginsampit do anang mga amigo nga magpa-RMCAT. Ana kuno nga i-breaking sa oval do bike. Gasaling-abo ro tapu-tapo kon agyan nanda ro owa hasemento nga daean it subdibisyon. Sa maeayo, napaagbay ro anang tatay sa anang nanay. Sayod nana nga malipayon gid si Ano. Pero bukon sa pagkamadason nga adlaw.

Madason nga adlaw ginsugo ni tatay na si ano nga magbakae it pandesal. Samad ro andang traysikol gani owa kabiyahe it agahon pa si tatay na. Nalipay mat a gani si Ano dahil masakyan na ro anang bike. Kat gapauli eon imaw ag una imaw maeapit eon sa atubang it kapilya nanguros imaw. Sa anang pagbuhi it sangka manubela nagkurog-kurog ro daeagan it bike. Mabudlay dahil ro anang waeang alima hay may buyot nga sangka supot nga pandesal. Kat naga-Amen eon imaw nadueaan imaw it balanse. Umuna it tugpa ro anang waeang alima dason ro pagsadsad it uyahon sa magaeas nga karsada.

Pagkatapos it sang oras nakita nana ro rason it anang pagkadisgrasya. Gatueok kana sa sueod it kuwadro sa maputi nga dingding. Owa gahibayag. Owa man gakusmaod. Sa anang pagkakita ginbawi na eagi-eagi ro anang panueok. Mas ginpreparar pa nana nga Makita ro mga gaa-eaeaging mga traysikol halin sa bintana nga anang nahamtangan. Gahueoeag. May kabuhi. Bukon it parehas it gatueok kana. Gintueok nana it uman ro anang gustong basueon. Imaw man gihapon. Owa gahibayag. Owa gakusmaod. Owa gapamisok. Ag dayon napabuyot si Ano sa anang may plaster nga uyahon ag waeang alima nga ginabitbit it anang liog. Napatueok imaw sa bintana. Sa guwa nakita na ro kabuhi nga anang ginausoy.

Pagkataliwan it ap-at nga oras nagdesisyon do nanay ni Ano nga iguwa eon lang imaw sa ospital. Owa man it kinahang-ean nga i-confine si Ano. Mabalik-balik eang ugaling imaw kon magpadresing.

Sang Domingo eon ro nagtaliwan halin sa pagkadisgrasya ni Ano. Medyo balewala eon lang ngani ro natabu kana. Gaeskuyla eon imaw. Si nanay ag si tatay na hay owa eon man it kahawag. Adlaw-adlaw man imaw nga gapadressing sa ospital. Sigi man do anang tumar it bueong. Ro anang BMX eang ugaling hay gintago ni tatay na sa andang bodega. Ginhambaean imaw nga indi anay magsakay sa bike hasta nga indi magmayad ro anang pakaw.

Pero ku isaeang muhapon nga owa it tawo sa andang baeay, isaeang muhapon nga owa sanda it klase dahil may miting ro andang mga maestra, natentar imaw nga buksan do andang bodega ag tan-awon do anang bike. Nakita nana anang bike nga gahayag sa madueom nga bodega. Owa it samad. Alas tres it hapon ag imaw eang isaea sa andang baeay. Anang tatay hay nagbiyahe, si nanay na hay sa Balete pa kon siin imaw gamaestra ag do anang daywang ka magueang hay sa anda pa nga mga obra. Ginpaguwa nana do bike. Ginguyod sa mahayag. Sa tabok nga karsada nakita nana ro mga saeakyan nga gailinagi. Napahibayag imaw nga sinakyan do anang bike. Sangka alima nana ro gabuyot it manubela. Pinitik na it tuong siki do pedal para iplastar sa unang sikad. Tinueod na paatubang ro anang eawas, ro bug-at hay sa tuong siki, bumaeos it sikad it pedal ro waeang siki. Tumiyog ro kariton it bisikleta. Naghibayag imaw nga pinungkuan ro pueongkuan it bike. Sinikaran nana it uman do pedal. Pauman-uman hasta nga naabot nana ro sementado nga karsada paguwa sa subdibisyon.

Pumundo imaw sa krosing. Sa anang pagbalikid sa anang waeang banda, nakita nana ro kapilya, ap-at nga ka baeay halin sa anang nahamtangan. Napaginhawa imaw it madaeom. Napadungok tapos napatangda sa eangit it gulpi. Nakita nana ro kaasul it eangit. May pueodyuton nga daeaura nga nakakabit. Napabaling ro anang atensiyon sa sangka daeaura nga may pamilyar nga korte para kana, kapamilyar nga medyo hakita eon nana. Huo, hadumduman nana, hakita nana ro dayang daeaura sa anang damgu. Dayang daeaura ro nagsampit kana. Daya ro daeaurang gusto kunta nana nga sundan.

Dali-dali imaw nga sumakay sa anang bike ag sumikad paeapit sa atubang it kapilya. Gindasig nana nga gindasig ro anang pagsikad. Ro anang panueok hay sa daeaura nga gasampit kana. Dinasigan pa gid nana ro anang pagsikad ag kat madali eon lang imaw sa atubang it kapilya, binuhian nana ro manubela ag inabot ro alima it daeaura. Pero pagkabuyot nana it alima it daeaura hay gulpi eang nga hinuyop it hangin ro daeaura. Nakita nana ro madasig nga pag-eain it porma it daeaura. Indi nana masayran kon ano nga butang. Indi matarok it anang painu-ino. Nabatyagan nana nga medyo naduea eon do balanse it bisikleta. Inusoy it anang mga mata ro manubela ag dinakop it anang tuong alima. Nagtawhay ro daeagan it bike. Napabalikid si Ano sa anang inagyan nga kapilya. Napahibayag imaw. Napahibayag imaw ag ana nga dinasigan do anang pagsikad sa bike.

Si Ano ag ro anang bike hay nangin sambilog sa gaieilig nga saeakyan sa karsada.



John E. Barrios

Painters understand nature and love her and teaches us to see her. (Van Gogh)

Para kakon ro anino hay may kolor. Ro anang kolor it anino hay gadepende sa bagay nga nag-eamon it kahayag. Halimbawa, ro sangka tawo nga pirmi gaagi sa owa pa hatamnan it paeay nga eogta hay may anino nga medyo madueom. Ro tawo nga pirmi gaagi sa kilid it mga daeagko nga bilding hay may anino nga may kolor it semento o saeaming – masilaw.

Ang nobya hay indi mawaea nga mag-agi sa andang sala adlaw-adlaw. Gani ro anang anino hay napuno it medalya, mga sertipiko ag gakasari-sari nga awards ni nanay na bilang maestra. Maaeam ro anino sang nobya. Halin it grade one hasta it grade six, first honor imaw sa andang klase. Ag kat nag-hayskul eon ang nobya, ginpabueo imaw ni nanay na it scholarship sa UP, sa Iloilo. Nakapasar imaw. Sa una nana nga dag-on sa hayskul napamatud-an nana nga kaya nanang makasueod sa top ten it andang klase. Boarding house, eskuylahan, boarding house, eskuylahan. Daya eang gid ro anang ginakabaeakahan. Indi eon imaw haeos makatan-aw it sine. Owa man haeos imaw it amiga. Pagkatapos it dag-on, ikap-at imaw sa andang klase – bukon it kangawa-ngawa sa kaparehas nana nga halin sa probinsiya. Namemorays nana ro mga parte it microscope, ro Periodic Table of Elements, ro gakasari-saring tanom ag sapat nga nakadrowing sa andang libro sa biology. Nabasa man nana si Rizal, si Shakespeare, ag si Robert Frost. Pati eon si Agoncillo, si Zaide ag ro ekonomista nga si Samuelson. Puwede eon ngani nana madrowing ro world map ag ma-recite ro kapital it gakasari-sari nga nasyon sa bilog nga kalibutan. Daya hay haobra nana pagkatapos it tatlong dag-on sa UP. Sa anang ikap-at nga dag-on tanan da hay nabayluhan it anang pagtinangis ag paghinibayag sa andang ibabaw it lamesa. Gulpi nga nauntat ro anang pag-eskwela.

But in general, he who, to find picturesque spots or figures, searches all manner of places, corners, holes which another rather passes by, is accused of many bad intentions and villaines which have never entered his head. (Van Gogh)

Nagkakilaea kami bangud nag-untat ako sa pag-eskwela. Sang dag-on lang ‘to bago nakon matapos ang kurso nga Fine Arts, major in Painting. Owa man ako it hatao nga rason sa mga kilaea nga nangutana kon ham-an nag-untat ako. Pero pagkatapos it sangka semestre, habatyagan ko nga medyo nahidlaw eo man ako it eskuylahan. Nag-eaong ako nga maeskwela it uman. Ginsugtan man ako ugaling bukon it sa Manila. Sa Kalibo eang. Second year college imaw. Pirmi ako gaistambay sa opisina it Student Council bangud tatlo sa mga senador hay halin sa UP – pareho ko man nga AWOL, ro daywa hay klasmeyt ko sa hayskul. Pito man lang nga units ro akong haenrol bangud owa eon ako it mabueo pa nga subjects. Hambae ni nanay mayad pa nga mabueo eon lang ako it education units ag magturo. Owa man it maeain kon magpati sa hambae it magueang. Gusto ko man lang makaguwa it baeay.
Naging paeaistorya ako. Siguro dahil mabuhay eon ako nga owa it hakaistorya. Ag ro ginbinasa nakon nga mga libro ko nagtaliwan nga ap-at nga buean hay kinahang-ean mang ipaguwa. Dahil uhaw ako sa istorya daywa kami sa ang naging nobya ro pirmi nga gaiba. Imaw ro paeahambae sa tanan nga senador sa opisina. Ati-atihan gid to kat ginsampit nana ako magsueod it sine. Sa kadueom it sinehan nabatian ko imaw nga naghambae nga, “gusto ko bago ko sabton do sangka eaki nga gakaila kakon paabuton ko anay it sang buean.” Owa man ako naghambae nga gakaila ako kana pero binuytan ko anang alima ag hinambae nga, “suno sa mga sikolohista, makara kuno magbueoytan ro magnobyo ag magnobya.” Madason nga adlaw, ana ako nga ginpangutana kon naila ako kana.

There are laws of proportion, of light and shadow, of perspective which one must know in order to be able to draw well, without that knowledge it always remains a fruitless struggle, and one never brings forthe anything. (Van Gogh)

Nangawa man ngani ako ham-an pareho kami nga mahilig magsaka it bukid. Sa sueod it amon nga waeong buean nga pag-iniba hasaka namon ro bukid it Manduyog sa Banga, ro bukid it Tigayon sa Kalibo, ro bukid it Ermitanyo sa Malinao ag iba pa nga bukid. Bago kami sumaka, amon anay nga ginatueok ag ginatun-an ro anang kabilugan, ro anang korte, ro anang kataas, ro anang itsura ag ro anang palibot – kon paano nana naapektuhan ro mga butang nga nakapalibot kana. Kon masayran eon ngani namon, imaw eon dayon do pag-umpisa it amon nga pagsaka. Siguro gapaniguro eang kami nga basi sa pag-abot namon sa ibabaw pareho kami nga owa kasayod kon ano ro amon nga pagasinggiton. Indi namon gusto nga kami hay basueon it makabati kamon.

Nakaabot gid man kami it waeong buean bago kami nadupilas samtang gasaka kami it sangka bukid nga owa namon hakilaea it mayad. Ag kami hay ginligid paidaeom. Kat una eon kami sa idaeom anang ginhambae nga nahadluk kuno imaw. “Ro atong anino hay masyado eong mahaba dahil sa atong pagsinaka it bukid. Indi eon ngani naton maabot.” Nakita ko nga may tumueo nga eoha sa anang mga mata. “Indi naton dapat kontrahon do tradisyon nga naghurma katon. Kon ano kita kato dapat parehas man sa makaron. Indi naton masarangan nga kontrahon do dayang tradisyon. Ro kabug-at it mga medalya ag mga trope ag mga awards ag mga sertipiko sa akong anino hay gahatak kakon paidaeom. Indi ko masarangang ioea paagi sa akong kaakig eang. Makusog pa gihapon ro akong anino.”

And what I am going to do now is to finish drawing of the muscles – that is of the torso and the legs – which with the others will form the whole of human body. (Van Gogh)

Pero pagkatapos it waeo nga buean nagkita kaming daywa. Inayat nana akong sakaon it uman ro bukid nga owa namon hakilaea. Dahil siguro sa sobrang kahidlaw sa isaea ag isaea naging mainit ro among pag-umpisa. O basi gusto eang namong pamatud-an nga makaron indi eon kami mapabueag it among mga anino. Nag-umpisa ako it pagsaka paagi sa pagharu sa punta it kuko it anang siki, imaw sa punta it akong buhok sa oeo. Medyo mahinay ro amon nga paghueag pero may kasiguruhan.

But nature certainly is ‘intangible’; yet one must seize it, and that with a strong hand. (Van Gogh)

Pero pagkatapos it waeong buean naabot namon ro tuktok it bukid. Nakita namon do among mga kaugalingon sa sukat it among mga pusod. Sayod namon dato eon do pinakaulihi namon nga tsansa para maperde namon do amon nga mga anino. Hugot ro amon nga pagkahakos sa isaea ag isaea, haeos kaparehas kami it eobid nga binalimbod. Ginharuan ko ang nobya. Nagbaeos imaw. Madaeom man. Maisog. Nakita namon ro among kaugalingon sa sangka madueom nga tunnel kaibahan do sangka gaeumpat-eompat ag maisot nga kahayag. Binuytan ko ro anang alima ag nagpaeapit sa maisot nga kahayag. Napan-uhan ko nga samtang kami hay gapaeapit, gapaeayo man do kahayag. Nag-umpisa kami it daeagan. Nag-umpisa it dasig do amon nga pagdaeagan. Ag nagdasig pa gid. Gin-eagas namon do maisot nga kahayag. Gin-eagas namon do maisot nga kahayag. Sa kadasig it akong pagdaeagan, haeos guyuron ko eon imaw. Ag hakibot eon lang ako sa pagkakakas it anang alima kakon. Sa akong pagbalikid nakita ko kon paano imaw ginkaon it kadueom

It would not be right if in drawing from nature I took up too many details and overlooked the great things. I do not stand helpless before nature any longer, as I used to do. (Van Gogh)

Sa akong pagmuk-eat nakita ko anang anino nga gabinira kana. Kapareho nana it taas. Kapareho nana it bahoe. Ugaling may pinasahe nga kakusog. Masyadong makusog nga napakalas imaw sa anang hugot nga pagkahakos kakon. Napabueag imaw kakon. Sa kataason it bukid nakita ko ro akon nga nobya nga gadaeagan papanaog. Madasig. Ag sa limang dag-on nga pagginuyod kana it anang anino owa eon imaw kadumdom it pagbalikid ag pagtangda kakon sa ibabaw it bukid. Hatun-an ko eon man nga indi kana magtueok sa idaeom. Siguro nahilong eon ang mga mata sa kasadya ko mga kolor it pinta nga akong ginabinutang sa akong kanbas.

Ag siguro ro kadueom it akong anino hay natabunan eon it daya nga mga kolor.



Ni John Barrios

Alas kuwatro kuwarenta singko it hapon

Ro ingaw it mga kuring hay mabatian sa bilog nga baeay. Magalis. Maisog. May maeagabog. Sambilog eo man nga kuring ro hadakpan ni Jun. Si Jun nga may daea-daeang sako nga may mga sueod nga kuring. Gainingaw ro mga kuring. Owat pahuway nga gainingaw. Hinigtan ni Jun it kaeat ro sako. Humibayag imaw. Ubos eon nana it dakop ro tanan nga kuring sa sueod it andang baeay. Guyod-guyod do sako nga gumuwa imaw it baeay. Ro mga kuring hay gainingaw. Owat pahuway nga iningaw.

Alas singko diyes it hapon

Umabot si Benny sa baeay nga may bitbit nga attache case. Mabug-at tueokon do anang abaga. Gaus-us halin sa linya it anang liog. Limang ka linya ro makita sa anang dahi. Bilugon ro anang idaeom it mga mata. Dinaea imaw it anang mga maeuyang eak-ang sa andang sala. Owa man imaw napapungko. Napatueok imaw sa gakaeatumbang mga bangko, gakaealhit nga mga diyaryo ag papel. Tinueok nana ron daya nga mga butang. Eumak-ang imaw pasueod sa anang kuwarto. Owa man imaw nagbuhay. Sa anang pagguwa kinay-ad nana ro magulo nga sala: pinatindog nana ro mga natumbang bangku, ginplastar do lamesita, pinueot ag binutang sa lamesita ro mga diyaryo ag papel ag binutang sa tunga it lamesita ro ash tray. Ag dayon pumungko imaw. Mangan-angan tumindog imaw ag umagto sa kusina. Gumuwa imaw nga may bitbit nga kape. Pumungko imaw. Binutang nana sa lamesita ro kape. Binukad nana ro diyaryo. Binukad nana ro madason nga pahina it dyaryo. Ag ro madason pa. Ininom nana ro kape. Sinindihan nana ro anang sigarilyo. Binukad nana ro dyaryo. Binukad nana ro madason nga pahina. Ag ro madason pa. Ininom nana ro kape. Hinitit nana ro sigarilyo. Binutang na ro sambilog nga dyaryo sa lamesita. Binukad na ro sambilog nga dyaryo. Sa pagsueod ni Jun, nakibot imaw sa anang haabutan pero owa imaw nagpahalata. Dumiretso imaw sa anang kuwarto. Binukad ni Benny ro madason nga pahina it dyaryo. Ag ro madason pa. Ininom nana ro kape. Hinitit nana ro sigarilyo. Binukad nana ro dyaryo. Binukad nana ro madason nga pahina it dyaryo. Ag ro madason pa. Gumuwa si Jun nga may bitbit nga libro. Nakapolo. Puno it hueas. Dire-diretso ro anang panikang pagguwa it pwertahan.

“Siin eot a ro atong mga kuring iya, Jun?” pangutana ni Benny.

“Ginhaboy ko, Nong,” sabat ni Jun.


“Owa ako naila nga makita sanda iya. Gailinaway. Gaaeagawan it pagkaon. Gaeinagsan sa sala. Gakatueog sa sopa. Gaipot sa bisan siin. Gainingaw pa kada gabii. Indi ako makatueogan, Nong.”
“Owa ka naeuoy kanda?”

“Hapa sanda naeooy kakon!” mabaskog nga sabat ni Jun daea pusdak it libro sa bangku. Napatueok eang si Benny. “Ginapatrapo nanda ako it andang ipot. Ginaistorbo pa nanda ang pagkatueog.”

“Di baea ikaw man kanda karon do nagdaea iya?”

“Huo,” mahinay nga sabat ni Jun.

“Ag ikaw man kanda nagtabog?”

“Owa ko mat a abi kato hasayri ro halit nga posible nanda nga itao kakon,” sabat ni Jun. Madumduman nana, pitong bilog nga kuring ro gainingaw sa binit it daean, pulos maniwang, ginbilin it kon sin-o nga owa’t kaeooy nga tag-ana. Daywa eang kanda ro anang hadaea bangud may bitbit pa nga bugas ro anang sambilog nga alima. Ro daywa ka kuring nga makaeoeooy ro itsura ikumpara sa lima nga anang binilin. Ro mga kuring nga anang ginsalbar, makaron anang nangin mabahoe nga problema. “Sanda nga akong ginbuligan—“

“Pero makaron imo nga gintabog?” pangutana it uman ni Benny.

“Owa eon ako it mapilian, Nong,” hambae ni Jun ag matikang paeapit sa bintana. Sayod nana madali eon lang ag magaabot eon do kadueom. Ro mga eak-ang it mga tawo hay madasig, medyo may ginaeagas—medyo may gaeagas. “Ku una daywa eang anay sanda, tapos naging ap-at, naging pito… waeo… pueo…”


“Huo,” una pa gihapon ay Jun nga panueok sa mga gaa-eaeaging tawo. “Ku una naila gid ako hay kada abot ko ag mag-uba it sapatos, may nagasaghid-saghid sa akong siki, kon magbugtaw ako kada agahon may ginahimas-himas ako samtang gapamati sa balita sa radyo.” Hapan-uhan nana sangkiri eon lang ro tawo nga nagaa-eagi sa kalye. May kon anong kahadluk nga nanuktok sa anang dughan. “Ugaling ko ulihi, kat nag-abu sanda, naduea eot a ro akong pagpalangga kanda. Makita ko eang gani ro sambilog kanda gasaka eon dayon ang dugo sa oeo. Pirmi ko eang sanda nga ginsasinipa.”

“Gaoy ka eang siguro,” ag binueo ag binukad ni Benny ro dyaryo. Ag binukad it uman do madason nga pahina it dyaryo.

“Siguro,” owa sa buot nga hambae ni Jun pagkatapos pumungko sa sopa. Sumandig imaw ag tinungtong na ra anang tuong siki sa alima it bangko. “Siguro gaoy eang ako it pinanumdom,” ag tumangda imaw sa kisame. “Ginapinanumdom ko kon abogasya gid man ang gusto nga boe-ong kurso. Ginapinanumdom ko kon sin-o ang dapat amiguhon, o kon kinahang-eanon ko gid man baea nga makipag-amigo.” Gulpi imaw nga humalin sa pagkasandig sa bangko ag inatubang si Benny. “Nahadluk ako, Nong. Indi ko masayran kon malipay man ako kon makabulig ako sa ang isigkatawo.”

“Ikaw mat a nagpili si ing kurso ngaron, di baea?”

Tumindog si Jun ag umagto sa may likod ni Benny.

“Ginsunod ko man lang ing hambae nga rong tawo nga gintaw-an it kaaeam it Diyos hay kinahang-ean magbayad paagi sa pagbulig sa anang isigkatawo,” matikang si Jun paagto sa bintanan ag mabalikid kay Benny. “Duyon do rason kon ham-an gusto ko nga maging abogado.”

“Ag duyon man do rason kon ham-an iya ka makaron!” gapaeang-eanting ro mga ugat sa liog ni Benny sa paghambae ag owa haeos imaw kahueag sa anang pagkapungko.

“Huo,” mahinay nga sabat ni Jun. Indi nana malipatan ro pilang beses eon kana haistorya ni Benny: Baynte uno anyos eon do nagtaliwan kat ginbilin imaw ni nanay na sa pwerta it baeay ni Benny nga nakaputos sa lampin. Ginbilin ko anang owa nakilaeang nanay. Ag indi eon man gustong makilaea pa. Masyadong masakit do mga nagtaliwan, “medyo gapangutkot it akong tinae,” suno kana.

“Owa nagsaea ro imong nanay sa pagpili kakon, sa pagpili it tawo nga makapakaon kimo, makapailis, maka—“

“Maka-makapaeskuyla kakon,” suhot ni Jun.

“Huo ginpaeskuyla ta,” may kadasigon nga sabat ni Benny. Ag nadumduman ni Benny ro mga nagtaliwan nga indi eon nana gusto pa nga panumdumon: Announcer imaw sa radyo ag nagapangabuhi nga isaeahanon. Timprano pa nga napatay ro anang ginikanan. Sambilog man lang imaw nga unga ag gusto gid nana ro ideya nga imaw eang isaea. Dahil kay Jun, nag-eskuyla imaw it uman. Inaywanan nana ro anang obra sa radyo. Ro suweldo nana sa radyo hay kueang pa para kandang daywa. Nakaobra imaw sa bangko. Pagkatapos it limang dag-on, naging manedyer imaw. “Owa ako kasayod kon pasaeamatan ta sa akong naabot o maakig ako kimo bangud gin-agaw mo ro akong kalipay.”

“Huo, ro imong mabahoe nga pagsakripisyo para sa akong kamaeayran.” Paano ni Jun malipatan, pilang beses eon ni Benny nga haistorya kana. Eabi eon gid kat nagkolehiyo imaw.

“Kinahang-ean obrahon ko ron. Kinahang-eang masayran mo bangud sayod ako kon anong klaseng sosyedad may una kita. Sayod ako kon anong klaseng henerasyon una ka makaron. Ikapila ta eon hambaean nga indi mag-iba-iba kanda!”

“Gintur-an mo ako nga magpati,” salimbat ni Jun.

“Huo,” mabug-at ra abaga ni Benny sa pagsabat.

“Gintur-an mo ako nga magpati pero halipatan mo ako tur-an nga magpainu-ino. Halipatan mo nga ako hay may painu-ino.”

“Hapa kon owa ta gintur-an nga magpati haabot mo ing nahamtangan makaron. Haabot mo nga makatapak sa abogasiya. Haabot mo nga—patiha ako, haagyan ko eot a ron,” gapakig-eooy nga hambae ni Benny.

“Pero naging malipayon ka baea?” pangutana ni Jun, ro kapuea it anang uyahon hay makita bisan sa ibabaw it ananag oeo ro igo it iwag.

“Owa ka iya makaron kon owa ko ginsunod ro akong tagipusuon!” singgit ni Benny, ro ugat sa anang liog gapaeang-eanting. Owa kaingok si Jun. “Huo owa ako nangin malipayon bangud ginpatay ko ro akon nga kalipay. Pero ro kabaylu it kalipay nga naduea hay isaea man nga kabuhi.”

“Kabuhi nga kapareho sa imo. Kabuhi nga owa it kalipay,” soesoe ni Jun. Naeomos sa kalinong ro bilog nga sala. Mabuhay nga kalinong: Si Benny gabuyot it dyaryo pero maeayo ra panueok. Si Jun nga may mga pangutana ra eoha sa mata.

Ginpatay ni Benny ro kalinong.

“Pila eon ing edad, Jun?” pangutana ni Benny.

“Baynte uno.”

“Bata ka pa. Abu ka pa nga dapat masayran iya sa ibabaw it kalibutan,” ininom ni Benny ro anang kape. Nabahawan imaw. Binutang na sa lamesita it uman do tasa. “Kat una man ako sa edad ngaron gusto ko man nga obrahon ang gusto nga obrahon, magsukoe. Huo, nagsukoe ako pero owa ako it mahimo. Makusog sandang masyado, Jun.”

“Sin-o sanda, Nong?” may kangawa nga pangutana ni Jun.

“Sanda Jun hay indi mo makilaea. Bisan ako owa ko man sanda nakilaea—pero mabatyagan mo sanda, Jun. Mabatyagan mo ro anda nga pagpaeapit, ro anda nga amat-amat nga pag-eook sa ing liog, ro andang pagpatay kimo.”

“Indi ako makaeobot sa imong ginapanghambae,” hambae ni Jun nga napatindog, makita sa anang uyahon ro pagkabaeaka ag kahadluk.

“Bangud baynte uno ka pa eang. Makaeubot ka eang kon maabot mo eon do tamang edad… pero oras nga maeobtan mo indi mo eon mabueo ro andang alima sa imong liog. Dikaron mo dayon mabatyagan ro pag-abot it imong kamatayon—ro imong amat-amat nga kamatayon.”

“Indi!” mabaskog nga singgit ni Jun. “Indi sanda magadinaeag-on kakon. Pagasuk-ean ko sanda. Pagasuk-ean ko sanda hasta sa ulihi nga pusnga it akon nga pagginhawa!” Napatueok si Benny kay Jun. Napatueok imaw sa nagbahaw eon nga kape. Abu pa nga sueod ro nabilin.

“Makusog sanda, Jun. Owa pa ako it kilaea nga nakaperde kanda,” hambae ni Benny nga ro panueok hay una gihapon sa kape. Si Jun hay gasala-sala eon, owa it pahuway ra hueag samtang nagatindog.

“Ako! Ako pa eang ro magadaog kontra kanda, ako pa eang!” ag amat-amat nga makita ro pagbuka it baba ni Jun, ro anang mga ngipon hay gaiglap sa nakapungko eon nga kadueom. “Umpisa makaron pagasarhan ko eon ro akong tagipusuon ag pagagamiton ko eon ro akong painu-ino. Umpisa makaron ako hay magakabuhi kaibahan it akon eang nga kaugalingon—magakabuhi ako nga owa gasalig sa bulig it iba—magakabuhi ako sa kabuhi nga akong pinili.” Mas nag-iglap pa gid ro anang maputi nga ngipon. Ro napatindog nga si Benny hay haeos indi makapati sa mga ginpanghambae ni Jun.

“Ano ing eobot hambaeon, Jun?” pangutana nana.

“Indi ako magpadayon sa akong pagtuon, Nong,” gahibayag nana nga sabat. “Indi ako mag-abogado ag indi man ako magbulig it ibang tawo.” Ro lima ka linya sa dahi ni Benny hay nagdaeom. Sa anang painu-ino hay bukon it dayang tawo ro anang pinueot sa guwa it anang baeay baynte anyos eon ro nagtaliwan.

“Bisan mamatay pa imaw?” halin kay Benny.

“Huo, Nong,” mabaskog nga sabat ni Jun. “Huo, Nong, bisan mamatay pa imaw. Indi ko’t a pag ibaylo ang sarili nga kalipayan sa anang kabuhi. Ag kon ako eang ro naging ikaw, owa ko eot a ginpueot ro eapsag ngato nga ginbilin sa pwertahan. Ginpabay-an ko eot a imaw nga mamatay.” Haeos maus-os ay Benny nga kaunod-unoran pagkabati sa ginhambae ni Jun. Ro anang tuhod hay gustong humaro sa saeog.

“Bukon it duyon do imong gustong hambaeon,” gapakig-eooy nana nga hambae pero binalikid pa imaw ni Jun ag hinambaean.

“Huo, Nong, bisan mamatay pa imaw,” ag tumikang si Jun sa sopa ag pumungko. Ininom na it sang eag-ok ro mabahaw eon nga kape ni Benny. “Pabay-an ko’t a imaw nga mamatay bangud kasayud ako nga imaw hay sambilog eang sa libu-libo nakon nga masalbar… announcer ka sa radyo kato, Nong, palangga mo ing obra—bangud sa pagpalangga ngaron ikaw hay indi makabatas nga maghimo it saea—bangud ro pagpalangga ngaron hay gakahueogan nga ikaw hay may respeto sa imong obra.” Ginpanggulo ni Jun ro mga nakaayos sa ibabaw it lamesita: dyaryo, ash tray, sigarilyo, lighter. “Gani indi ka mabakae it kon sisin-o nga gustong higkuan do imong dungog. Gani owa sanda it kusog nga pauntaton do imo nga pagsinugid sa tawo it maeain nanda nga ginahimo. Panumduma, Nong, kon pilang libo ro imo nga masalbar kon ibulgar mo sa radyo do mga kuwarta nga ginpangkurakot it mga empleyado sa atong gobyerno. Owa ka eon kunta it makita nga mga unga nga busdik it tiyan, owa ka eon kunta it makita nga mga tulay nga gakautod kon hibagyuhan, owa ka eon kunta it makita nga manugpakalimos sa daean, owa ka eon kunta it mahugom nga baho sa atong mga tindahan… owa ka eon kunta it makita nga kadueom, Nong,” haeos mabugto ra pagginhawa sa kadasigon it anang paghambae. Nakapungko imaw samantalang si Benny nakatindog. Indi mabueo-bueo kay Benny nga panueok ro gingulo nga mga butang sa ibabaw it lamesita. Ginpaeapitan nana ag gin-ayos ro mga pagkabutang sa ibabaw it lamesita. Napauntat imaw ag napabalikid pagkabati it mga ingaw it kuring. Tumusok sa anang dughan ro koeba.

“Abi ko ginpilak mo eon sa maeayo ro atong mga kuring?” pangutana nana kay Jun. Gulpi eang nga winaslik ni Jun ro mga pagkabutang sa ibabaw it lamesita ag dumaeagan sa may bintana. Tinan-aw na ro mga tawo nga gaaeagi. Owa eon imaw it makita bisan sambilog. Madueom ro sa guwa it baeay.”

“Nagsaea ako,” binalikid na si Benny. “Makaron ko eang hasayran nga kon ro sangka tawo hay magpinaeayo sa mga tawo nga gapangayo it anang bulig, mapaeapit nga mapaeapit sanda. Kaparehas it mga kuring nga akong ginhaboy.”

“Pero bisan tabunan mo pa ro andang mga mata, mahugman ka man gihapon nanda,” hambae ni Benny.

“Pero sayod ko eon kon ano ang pagaobrahon kanda.”


Gintueok eang ni Jun si Benny tapos gangisi nga dumaeagan pagguwa it baeay. Nabilin si Benny nga gatueok sa pwertahan nga ginguw-an ni Jun. Binalikid nana ro nakakalat nga mga pagkabutang. Mahinay nga pinueot ro anang lighter. Pumungko sa sopa. Pinitik ro lighter. Nagkaeayo. Tinueok na ro kaeayo, pilit nga gin-usoy ro sabat sa buot hambaeon ni Jun. Owa imaw it nakita nga sabat. Sinindihan nana ro sigarilyo. Hinitit. Binueo sa anang bibig. Pinaguwa sa ilong ro asu. Hinitit it uman. Gulpi eang napauntat imaw. Dali-dali nga gin-kras do sigarilyo sa ash tray ag sumueod sa kuwarto.

Pagbalik ni Jun, imaw hay sobrang masadya. Puno it dugo ro anang eambong ag saewae. Ro ingaw it mga kuring hay indi eon mabatian.

“Nong! Nong Benny!” singgit nana bitbit it tuman nga kalipay. “Nong, hilway eon ako. Habueo ko eon do andang mga alima sa akong liog—nagdaog ako kontra kanda, Nong,” mahaeakhak imaw it mabaskog.

Gumuwa si Benny nga may bitbit nga .38 kalibre nga baril sa anang tuong alima.

“Nong, nagsaea ka si ing hambae nga maperde nanda ako—nagdaog ako, Nong! Nagdaog ako!” sa paghambae nana kara hay pinatumtuman imaw ni Benny samtang sigi ra eak-ang papaeapit kay Jun.

“Nong-No-Nong a-ano ing bu-buot hambaeon ko—“

Owa eon ni Benny ginpatapos si Jun it hambae. Hakibot man imaw pagkabati it eupok. Gintueok nana ro baril sa anang tuong alima ag naghambae, “bukon eang it ikaw ro nagdaog, Jun, ako man. Ako man, Jun, nagdaog man ako,” hambae nana nga una gihapon ro anang panueok sa baril nga anang ginabuytan.

Una gihapon ro anang panueok sa baril nga anang ginabuytan.

Alas sais impunto it gabii

Nagdueom ro tanan sa panghuna-huna ni Benny.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Magpapatay-patay Ka!

Melchor F. Cichon

Magpapatay-patay ka!
Sa tanan nga oras!
Indi ka gid magkutib-kutib
O maghambal
Batok sa utoridad.
Indi gid!
Ipatuslok sa tagipusuon mo
Ang mga buyayaw
Kag mga pagbutang-butang
Sa tanan nga oras!
Indi magtulok kon diin makadto
Ang hangin, ang maitum nga gal-um
O batyagon ang ilang pag-agi.
Indi gid!
Kag indi gid magreport
Sang ano mang kurapsiyon
O pagpalapaw sang presyo
Sa kay kon sin-o.
Sa imo gid lang. Ikaw gid lang!
Kag tandaan gid—indi gid magpamangkot
Kon ngaa magpapatay-patay ka.
Indi gid!

Ha? Ano?

Ini bala ang panghunahuna ni Oblation?
Ang espiritu ni Rizal, ni Bonifacio?
Ni Ninoy Aquino kag ni Lean Alejandro?

Magpapatay-patay ka
Sa tanan nga oras!

Pero ano ang isabat ko
Sa kaapu-apohan ko
Kon pamangkuton nila ako:

Indi bala buhi ka sadto, Lolo?

Monday, March 31, 2008

Aklanon Legends

Legends in Aklan

Gintipon ni

Melchor F. Cichon

May mga istorya sa Aklan hanungod sa aswang ag sa lugar.

Ro mga masunod nga legends hay ginbatak (lifted) sa libro ni Damiana Eugenio, nga ginbatak man nana sa tesis ni Claire A. Zarate-Manalo nga ginsumite sa Centro Escolar University, Manila. Ro iba hay ginbatak man ni Prof. Eugenio sa iba pa nga mga sources. Ro ulihi nga legend hay ginsueat ko.

Bangud owa ako kasayod kon siin si Ms. Claire A. Zarate-Manalo, Nick I. Marte, ag kay Leopoldo A. de la Cruz, owa ako kapangayo kanda it permiso nga ibutang ra andang obra kara. Ginbutang ko raya nga mga legends agod mabasa ra it mga Akeanon, maskin siin man sanda. Kabay pa nga masugot man nga mapabilin ro mga legends ngara riya agod mas abu pa gid nga Akeanon ro makabasa kara. Pero kon indi gid man sanda magsugot, sueati eang ako agod mahugas ko ra. Saeamat gid.

An Aswang’s Revenge

An Aswang Turns Into a Cat

Encounter with a TikTik

Encounter With a Wakwak

Aswang as a Bird/Chicken

Aswang as an Old Woman

A Friendly Kapre

The Kapre

Encounter With A Kapre

The Duende of New Buswang, Kalibo

I Saw a Duende

The Playful Duende

The White Bell of Jemino

Legend of Aklan

May Aswang sa Idaeum It Baeay


An Aswang’s Revenge

Narrated by Amelia Zarate

This happened about 34 years ago when my third son, Junior was only eight months old.

That morning, an old woman selling dayok (native salted shrimps) passed by. From the balkonahe (porch), I called her and tried the dayok. I did not like the taste, so I said, “Your dayok doesn’t taste good! I’m not buying anymore.” That was all I said and the old woman left. The old woman, however, came from a neighboring town where witches are rumored to abound.

At about eight o’clock that evening, my mother-in-law, my children, and I were getting ready to go to bed. My husband was in Manila at that time. We heard sounds of scratching and running at the rooftop (made of nipa thatches). My mother-in-law began cursing and muttering that there was an aswang around. (It is believed that the aswang is frightened when one shows his awareness of its presence.)

A moment later, Junior suddenly began crying. He cried harder until it became difficult to pacify him. Everytime I laid him down to sleep he would get up. He kept on crying as if he were being pricked.

While we were trying to lull the baby to sleep, our neighbor, Tay Iboy, shouted, “Ay, mare, hada-ean it a kamo it kinanta, haron ro tiktik sa idaeom ninyo, ga hinuni” (Ay Mare, you seem not to know, you’ve been singing while the tiktik continues to make sounds under your house).

The following morning, Junior started vomiting. At the same time he had watery stool. He had not eaten anything aside from the milk feedings.

At dusk, he was very weak. He had deep eye sockets.

We called Dr. Rafael Tumbokon. After examining the baby, he advised us to have someone perform lay baptism on Junior. Then he gave the baby an injection. It seemed to be the last recourse.

Under the house, my neighbor had started to build a bonfire (dap-ong). Smoking the house is believed to drive away the evil spirits. When we asked the doctor if it was all right to make dap-ong he told us to go ahead.

We requested Tiyo Cleto to perform the lay baptism.

Suddenly we thought of calling Anton, an arbulario (medicine woman). She took an empty coconut shell and filled it with live coals, tawas (alum), kamangyan (incense), and kinuskos nga niyog (shredded coconut). The tawas was first placed on Junior’s abdomin before it was mixed with the other things in the coconut shell. Gintu-ob si Junior (Junior was treated by smoking). Carrying the coconut shell, the arbulario circled several times. Afterwards, gin-uli-an si Junior (the egg ritual was performed on Junior). After examining the egg, the arbulario came out with this pronouncement: gin kaigban it aswang si Junior (Junior was bewitched). Seen in the egg were eye marks and blood which were indications that Junior was inaswang (bewitched).

After that treatment, the baby immediately became well. (From Claire Zarate-Manalo, “Kalibo Supernaturalism and Its Social Relevance” (M.A. theses, Centro Escolar University, Manila, 1981, pp. 109-111). In: Philippine folk literature: the legends. Edited by Damiana Eugenio, Diliman, Quezon City, UP Press, 2002, pp. 156-157)

An Aswang Turns Into a Cat

Narrated by Odong Julian, December 2, 1980

This happened to me sometime in 1958. We were at the house of my bilas (my sister-in-law’s husband) because one of his children died. We were about to sleep at about eleven o’clock in the evening when my brother-in-law opened the window. Outside the house was a banana tree. I invited him to go to bed but he remained silent. Instead, he waved his hand at us. We quietly approached the window. It was incredible! We saw a person fast climbing the banana tree while clinging to a eamay (withered banana leaf). It was strange that the eamay did not yield. When Manong Jose Belarmino saw this, he went down the house carrying a talibong (fighting bolo) and cut the banana tree entirely with one back stroke. Pumsik ro tawo ngato; tumugpa, kuring. (The person jerked; a cat fell on the ground.) About forty of us witnessed the transformation from a human being into an animal. When the cat moved, Nong Jose’s elder brother struck it, but it was able to jump outside. It was April and the ricefield had been cleared and prepared for planting. We all chased the cat in the field. To be sure that the cat would not be able to catch the cat, some people shouted “shoot.” One of us, however, opposed the idea as someone else might be hit. Another one said, “Bali aswang ron (that might be an aswang).” Finally, we all went home disappointed for the cat just disappeared.

The moon was beginning to wane. My bilas asked me to keep him company while watching the house. We sat closed to each other on the hagdan (staircase). He was facing one direction while I was facing the opposite. About ten minutes later, a tall man suddenly appeared in front of him. My bilas gave out a loud frightened cry. I pierced the creature through and through with my talibong but he was able to creep (nagsuhut) under the house and vanish. Surprisingly, my talibong was dulled at the tip. That was the time I started to believe that the aswang really exists. (From Claire Zarate-Manalo, “Kalibo Supernaturalism and Its Social Relevance” (M.A. theses, Centro Escular University, Manila, 1981, pp. 115-116. In: Philippine folk literature: the legends. Edited by Damiana Eugenio, Diliman, Quezon City, UP Press, 2002, pp. 170-171)

Encounter with a TikTik

Narrated by Querubin Abello

When I reached a secluded place, it started to drizzle. I was approaching a tulay-tulay (improvised bridge) when I noticed a shadow of a human being leaning against a wire post. I stopped for a while and lighted a cigarette so that the figure would know that there was someone else in the road. When I threw the lighted matchstick, the shadow disappeared. I looked at the other direction thinking that it might be a rival mirror. I saw no one. I had walked a distance of about ten meters when I began to hear do huni nga ga kutu-kutu (successive sounds) and the sound was tik tik. According to old folk, it is an evil spirit. I cursed and teased the object, saying, “If you like me, come walk with me home!” It was not a windy night for there was only a drizzle, but after a while a very strong wind suddenly seized me and I felt being strangled. I realized that I was grapping with an invisible creature whose attire resembled a birang (a native clothing material of very coarse fiber) similar to that worm by old women. I tried to grab the invisible creature’s head but its long tresses were slippery, and when we wrestled, its legs twisted around my waist. I suspected that it was a female wearing a saya (long shirt). I just could not visualize its face. I would wind its hair around my arm but it would slip at once for it was so slippery. It continued to sound tik, tik, tik as we grappled each other. Someone was pulling my legs until my shoes were taken off. I also succeeded in hurling my enemy upon the ground ag naga-eagpok man (and it would create a loud thud). But again it would cling to me and it was trying to reach my neck. When I gripped its hand, it was like the hand of an old woman, thin and shriveled. When I tried to whirl the creature around and around, it just clung tightly to my frontal body.

Later I weakened and I shouted for help, but no one came. My voice turned hoarse as I shouted, “Tabang, Tabang! (Help! Help!)” more than a dozen times.

Finally, I lost consciousness, but by a stroke of luck, a man from Nalo-ok (a barrio of Kalibo) transporting pawid (nipa hatches) in his karusa (cart) passed by Dikoy and I actually knew each other but that night he did not recognize me at once. We live on the same street in Kalibo. According to Dikoy, when he came to help me, he also heard the sound tik, so he drew out his bolo and shouted for help… (From Claire Zarate-Manalo, “Kalibo Supernaturalism and Its Social Relevance” (M.A. theses, Centro Escolar University, Manila, 1981, pp. 95-96). In: Philippine folk literature: the legends. Edited by Damiana Eugenio, Diliman, Quezon City, UP Press, 2002, pp. 174).

Encounter With a Wakwak

Narrated by Berning, 27, a tricycle driver, April 8, 1976

This happened to me in February 1976. At about nine o’clock that evening. I took a walk. Suddenly, I heard the sound of a wakwak. Since I was beginning to feel afraid, I shouted, “Come here, let’s make love.” It was only to boast my morale. Each time the wakwak created a sound I shouted back. Later, however, after having shouted several times and as I was becoming more afraid, the wakwak hovered about me. It was black and it resembled a kabug (bat), but was bigger than the latter. It seized me and we wrestled, but I noticed that it was not bat-like anymore. It was now a woman I was grappling with and the creature was slippery. It had long hair. I know very well it was a wakwak because I kept hearing the sound wak, wak, wak. The wakwak was always over me.

We rolled over and over until we reached a eogan-eogan (quagmire). I shouted for help because I felt as if I were going to die. I had a good physique and I was strong enough but I could not beat my adversary. The female wakwak seemed young and it had sharp, long nails. In fact the fingernails were visible the following morning.

I kept shouting for help as we wallowed in the mud. But there was not a single house nearby. So we continued to fight. Had I not been aided on time, I could have been choked to death. When help came, the wakwak disappeared. I was muddy all over. I suffered from bruises and other physical injuries. I learned that several persons had died in the very same spot several years before.

I was not drunk when the incident happened. In fact I was starting to look for tuba wine extracted from coconut. I would be dead now if I had been drunk. (From Claire Zarate-Manalo, “Kalibo Supernaturalism and Its Social Relevance” (M.A. theses, Centro Escolar University, Manila, 1981, pp. 97-98). In: Philippine folk literature: the legends. Edited by Damiana Eugenio, Diliman, Quezon City, UP Press, 2002, pp.175.)

Aswang as a Bird/Chicken

Narrated by Beverly Matutina, December 5, 1980

This happened when I was in Grade III. We were on our way home from school when I saw a female aswang. First, she kept on going around the bungsod (ant hill). Then, nagtinuwad-tuwad (she kept on crouching with head downward and buttocks upward on the ant hill). Her dress began to spread apart and my two cousins and I clearly saw that wings resembling those of a chicken were growing on her kilid (sides). The three of us watched her closely. The wings continued to expand and she also continued to crouch with head downward and buttocks upward. She was now ready to fly. Her hair stood on end (nagtindi ra buhok). It was a horrible sight. We ran as fast as we could because we were afraid that she would fly and snatch us away. (From Claire Zarate-Manalo, “Kalibo Supernaturalism and Its Social Relevance” (M.A. theses, Centro Escolar University, Manila, 1981, p. 100). In: Philippine folk literature: the legends. Edited by Damiana Eugenio, Diliman, Quezon City, UP Press, 2002, pp.176.)

Aswang as an Old Woman

Narrated by Rom Barrios, 36, candle maker, on November 30, 1980

I saw an old woman in her eighties just in front of the Sampaton house. She was carrying a bayong (native bag). Right away I wondered why a woman of her age should be out in the street at that time of the night (almost twelve o’clock midnight). I wondered if she had lost her way. After dropping Nichols home, I decided to go back to the place where I had seen the old woman with the thought of giving her a lift. I was with Mr. Avellana, our boarder. Strangley enough, I could see no trace of the old woman. I had left her just a block away from Nichol’s house and I could not understand how she could have vanished in just a wink. I stopped in every corner just to locate her, but she was completely gone. So, we proceeded home to Toting Reyes St., forgetting all about the old woman. But then, all of a sudden, I spotted her along 19 Martyrs Street, Building III, so I followed her. I began to suspect that she was a witch. I called Mr. Avellana’s attention to the woman’s feet. They were not touching the ground. The woman was floating. I alighted from the jeep without turning off the light. I wanted to see (her entire appearance clearly). I kept turning around for whenever I turned to this side she would turn to the other side and vice-versa. I could not figure out her entire appearance. Much as I tried, I could not grasp the old woman because she was slippery. We arrived at our apartment on Toting Reyes St., but no sooner had we gone up when we heard the sound of the wakwak. (From Claire Zarate-Manalo, “Kalibo Supernaturalism and Its Social Relevance” (M.A. theses, Centro Escular University, Manila, 1981, pp. 101). In: Philippine folk literature: the legends. Edited by Damiana Eugenio, Diliman, Quezon City, UP Press, 2002, pp.176-177.)

A Friendly Kapre

Narrated by Francisco Tolentino, 65, farmer, on April 10, 1976

We came to notice that upon reaching home in the evening, Alfredo, my nephew, would proceed to the kitchen, look for some rice and viands and take them down. This time, I was compelled to ask him: “Why are you bringing them downstairs?” Alfredo replied, “Itay, my friend could not go upstairs; besides, the people in this house are quite different from my friend.” He added that his friend looked very much like the rest of us, except that it was much bigger and did not live in a house like ours, and that his friend was five meters tall and somewhat like four dangaw (approximately thirty-two inches) in diameter. I was told that it was quite dark. The other parts of its body, I was further told, were in proportion to its body. Alfredo could not even reach his friend’s sakang (portion between the thighs) even if he stood straight. It was so tall that Alfredo would just pass underneath its legs. His friend would laugh everytime Alfredo stared at him. But this kapre, I was told, was tidy and not hairy like the rest of them; it would always stay naked, though.

Everytime the two of them went out together, Alfredo’s friend would always guard him along the way. His friend was absolutely harmless, Alfredo told me.

Alfredo first met his friend when he was on the grassy fields feeding a carabao. Alfredo, as you know, was staying with us and helping me in the farm. He would feed the carabao starting at three o’clock in the morning, then at five-thirty in the afternoon, and at eight o’clock or nine o’clock in the evening.

At about seven o’clock one evening, while Alfredo was watching the carabao in the grassy fields, this giant creature blocked his way and laughed when my nephew gazed at it. Alfredo was never afraid of it. Alfredo told it to stop kidding him. He knew all along that it was a kapre (he had heard so much about it). Alfredo was brave. My nephew told the kapre that if it ever wanted to make friends, it would have to follow him. Whenever they reached home, they would take supper. But the creature would just wait at the back of the house outside. After the kapre had eaten supper, he would ask permission to leave. Every night, the kapre would pick Alfredo up in the fields and they would go home together. That friendship lasted for over a year. The creature did not really help Alfredo much; he simply guarded Alfredo wherever he went.

But something happened that the kapre resented. It all started when Segunda, our helper, slammed the kitchen door when she saw Alfredo and his friend eating together. Before it could finish its food, the poor giant left the house quickly. But it had told Alfredo that it would never come to his place again. Alfredo followed his friend bringing along with him the food his friend had left. But the kapre refused to accept it.

Alfredo went home crying. Now that his friend had left him, nobody would help him with his problems.

Fortunately, however, Alfredo was able to appease his friend, and they went on with their friendship. But the friendship finally broke up when the kapre became so strict as to restrict Alfredo from going out at night. Not only that, Segunda’s annoying habits added to the trouble. Soon after, Alfredo and the kapre parted ways. Alfredo became mentally ill. He has fully recovered from the illness, though. It was Alfredo himself who narrated this story to me. (From Claire Zarate-Manalo, “Kalibo Supernaturalism and Its Social Relevance” (M.A. theses, Centro Escular University, Manila, 1981, pp. 158-160). In: Philippine folk literature: the legends. Edited by Damiana Eugenio, Diliman, Quezon City, UP Press, 2002, pp.186-187)

The Kapre

Narrated by Virgie Bongabong, 31, college graduate and businesswoman

This happened to me in 1973. I had some petty quarrel with my husband, Rey, that night. That is why at a little past nine o’clock, I went out to the terrace to catch fresh air. During the three of five minutes that I was standing beside the door, I saw something shining on the rima tree. Before that, the rima tree had been so huge that it had to be partially cut as it practically covered the house next door. We heard that our place was frequently visited by evil spirits during the full moon. When I looked at the rima tree, I saw a very big creature squatting and holding something brilliant. Probably it was what we call tabako (tobacco), as it is believed that kapre do smoke tobacco. If I recall it correctly, I would say that it was about three times the size of a regular human being and his lower limbs reached his shoulders. I did not clearly see his eyes, ears or hair because it was as if I was viewing a shadow. But definitely, it was not merely a shadow of a man because I am sure I really saw a very huge creature. His size would probably be about double that of two big human beings. Much as I wanted to shout upon seeing the creature, I couldn’t. It took sometime before I was able to run into my room. When I was running into my room I was freezing and sweating all over. I was terribly scared and was trembling, that is why Rey asked me what had happened. He even shook me but I just could not utter a word; so, I bit my finger for so long. The pain enabled me to shout and tell Rey everything. (From Claire Zarate-Manalo, “Kalibo Supernaturalism and Its Social Relevance” (M.A. theses, Centro Escular University, Manila, 1981, pp. 146-147). In: Philippine folk literature: the legends. Edited by Damiana Eugenio, Diliman, Quezon City, UP Press, 2002, pp.188)

Encounter With A Kapre

Narrated by Napoleon Barrientos, 64

This is what happened to me before the war when I was still a bachelor.

There were five of us, all guys, who went to Alipustos, Numancia, to serenade someone. Aliputos is about four kilometers from Kalibo. Along the way, at about one o’clock in the morning, we were followed by a wakwak and a titktik. We did not see them but we heard their sounds. We had brought with us three knives and one box of matches. I whispered to my companions to get some li-ay (dried coconut leaves) and light a torch. But still those sounds followed us. Upon reaching Laguing-Banwa, we passed by a river and picked some corn which we later broiled. As we were about to finish broiling the ears of corn, we saw two women in wooden slippers running. That was about two o’clock in the morning. I told Juaning, one of my companions, “Juaning, let’s follow them and find out where they came from.” But Juaning replied, “But what about the corn?”

I followed the two women alone.

As I was approaching the dam near my place, I picked up some wooden spikes and ran toward the dam to follow those women. I chased them for about a kilometer, but they disappeared from view.

As I stood on the dam, I suddenly saw a gigantic creature stretching his hands sideward and wearing a huge hat and suit made of sheepskin. It was a very tall and black creature hovering about me. It had probably three times the height of an ordinary person and a width four times that of a human being. It was so big indeed and it had very long nails. I wanted to run but it was blocking me. Thereupon, I remembered the wooden spikes, and so I stabbed the creature on the side, causing it to fall off the dam. He felt the pain and he roared. He wanted to climb up the dam again. I could not determine how thick were its hairs all over because of its long sleeves. But it had huge eyes and nose. That is what the old people call kapre.

When I saw it climbing up the dam again, I hurled a wooden stick about one meter long as it, causing it to roll till it fell into the waters. It managed to float and was able to find a coconut wood to lean on. I watched it closely. Thereupon, I ran as fast as I could and called my companions. I told them there was a kapre over there. My companions even saw it floating. Thereupon it slid off the log and began to disappear. Then we all went to eat our boiled corn and parted. (From Claire Zarate-Manalo, “Kalibo Supernaturalism and Its Social Relevance” (M.A. theses, Centro Escular University, Manila, 1981, pp. 150-151. In: Philippine folk literature: the legends. Edited by Damiana Eugenio, Diliman, Quezon City, UP Press, 2002, pp.188-189)

The Duende of New Buswang, Kalibo

Narrated by Melani Zarate who saw the duende in 1979

Around six-thirty in the afternoon on August 24, 1979, my friends (boys and girls) and I went to Barangay New Buswang, Kalibo, Aklan. This Barangay is by the seashore. We went there for beach-strolling and pleasure. We rode a jeep and when we arrived there we were cheerfully telling stories, while sipping soft drinks. We stayed there for about an hour. I called upon my companions to go home because we were to have “reparation” in church at eight o’clock in the evening in connection with our Kristo-Maria seminar.

We rode the jeep again. I was seated near the back. All of a sudden, I was shocked to see ahead of us a small old man sitting on top of a cut coconut stump. He was one and a half feet tall. He wore a sharply pointed hat and he was barefooted. He was laughing at me. Because of my sudden shock and surprise, I kept looking at him, I was speechless. I rubbed my eyes for I might just been mistaken in my sight, and I stared at him intensely because this might just have been due to the glass windshield of the jeep. But I could not be mistaken for my eye light was normal. I told my girl friends about what I saw and I pointed to them the small man, but they just laughed at me and they said that I was only fooling them. I pointed to the object but they said they could not see it. We became the light of the jeep toward the small man but still it was I alone who could see the object; the rest of them could not. On the road back home, I still insisted that there was really a dwarf on top of the coconut stump but they would not believe and they just laughed at me. But I cannot forget my sight of the dwarf on the coconut stump. (From Claire Zarate-Manalo, “Kalibo Supernaturalism and Its Social Relevance” (M.A. theses, Centro Escolar University, Manila, 1981, pp. 168-169). In: Philippine folk literature: the legends. Edited by Damiana Eugenio, Diliman, Quezon City, UP Press, 2002, pp.213-214)

I Saw a Duende

Narrated by Emile Zarate-Ramos, A college graduate and businesswoman

On November 1, 1968, feast of departed souls, my elder sister, Claire Zarate-Manalo and I went to the Kalibo Parish Church at about nine-thirty in the morning. When we went towards the altar to receive communion, I knelt at the extreme left, side by side with my elder sister who was gazing at the altar. At once, as I knelt, I saw a small man sitting at the side of the altar. The size of the man was about that of a five-month-old baby, only that he was thin. He was one and a half feet tall. He was dark complexioned and looked as if he was between eighty to eighty-five years of age and toothless. His dress was entirely black like a pajama, with long pants, and long sleeves. He had a black hat like that of a dwarf and his shoes were like his black hat. I stared at the man seriously because he was the first smallest old man I had ever seen. It occurred to me that this might be what we call dwarf. That is why I stared at him long enough. I looked at my elder sister to see if she was also looking at the man, but she was not; she seemed serious and seemed to have seen nothing unusual. I looked at other people beside us and they wee not looking at the man either. It occurred to me that they might have been used to that man there. When we got home, I asked my elder sister if she saw the dwarf, but she answered that she had not seen anything. My hair stood on end from the answer she gave me. (From Claire Zarate-Manalo, “Kalibo Supernaturalism and Its Social Relevance” (M.A. theses, Centro Escolar University, Manila, 1981, pp. 162-163). In: Philippine folk literature: the legends. Edited by Damiana Eugenio, Diliman, Quezon City, UP Press, 2002, pp.214-215)

The Playful Duende

Narrated by Peping, a welding shop operator

This happened to me in my shop. We started operation in 1972, but the incident happened in 1973, to be precise. The shop which I am occupying now used to be an ermita of Roxas Avenue which was utilized for the May festivities.

Every afternoon, we would gather the different pieces of equipment inside the shop and arrange them in one place. Every morning, as we started working, our pliers would mysteriously disappear and my hired workers would endlessly look for it. In fact, my workers had nothing to do with the pliers, for it was I who used it and kept it afterwards in the afternoon. So, we would search for it till we finally found it. It had been like that for many times. So, the next time around, I would simply look for it silently when it disappeared. After all, my workers would always tell me that it was I who kept it the day before. I suspected that someone was making fun of us. My suspicion that my shop was inhabited by a duende was strengthened when something strange also happened to my worker, Gil, who used to sleep in the shop. It was a full moon, and Gil sensed something that sounded like footsteps moving about the room. But he saw no one outside. He went back to sleep spreading the blanket over himself. Shortly after that, he felt his hair being pulled from below. He suddenly got up feeling terribly nervous. (From Claire Zarate-Manalo, “Kalibo Supernaturalism and Its Social Relevance” (M.A. theses, Centro Escolar University, Manila, 1981, pp. 167). In: Philippine folk literature: the legends. Edited by Damiana Eugenio, Diliman, Quezon City, UP Press, 2002, pp.215)

The White Bell of Jemino

Nick I. Marte

Philippine Herald Magazine, March 18, 1961, p. 8-9

A priceless relic of great historic importance lies buried to this day beneath the muddy bottom of a haunted river in Aklan province. This is the great white bell of Jemino whose legend many grade-school children found exciting reading in the Osias Readers.

The long-buried treasure awaits some philanthropic hands to salvage it from this watery grave. Cast in pure silver, the fabulous bell may enrich a finder with a few thousand pesos but the nation will immensely rewarded by its rare cultural values, for this is the memento of those brave and intelligent people who ruled these parts, flourished, and passed away.

This historic spot is located in the lonely little barrio of Jemino where flows the old meandering creek which the inhabitants call bucayan, or the White One. A drying rivulet now, it had been a deep eddying river which cut across the broad meadows of this ancient sitio of Altavas, Aklan. Nearby, to the south, a forested hill of noble height rises, forming a verdant backdrop against the rustic scene. The barrio abounds with local tales, haunted spots, and superstitions.

On the summit of the hill there used to stand, according to natives, a bamboo belfry where the legendary white bell would sound a warning of approaching Moro pirates. Local chroniclers claim that the superannuated stream is associated with the legend and point to the exact spot in the river where the white bell was hidden to prevent its capture by a band of Moros centuries ago.

The fabulous artifact was never retrieved after that and it was assumed to have found eternal repose beneath layers of silt that for centuries have accumulated in the bottom. Thus has the river derived its name. Several attempts to recover the white bell in the early days proved futile as divers came up scarred and reported seeing a Kataw, or siren (mermaid), near the bottom. Then legend took over. Superstitious natives believe that the bell is protected by the river-siren whose mighty charms hide it from the search of mortals. A quaint old man who lives near the enchanted spot gives credence to this mythical yarn and says that the white bell is still there where his forebears threw it into the water centuries ago.

The celebrated episode began sometime in the year 1600, during the height of the Moro depredations. In olden times Jemino embraced the length and breadth of a whole wide valley where a prosperous community of farmers and fishermen flourished. The wilderness reigned on the borders of the river. The hand of cultivation had not as yet laid low the dark forest nearby and tamed the features of the countryside. Game was plenty, crop harvests were abundant, and the people lived a happy life.

The only source of trouble was the pirates who were relentlessly harrying the inhabitants of this coastal region. Like hornets, the buccaneers would come in hordes from the islands of Ternate and Jolo, and not infrequently they would be joined by the fierce tribes of neighboring Borneo. Loaded with prisoners and booty, they would sail away to their distant strongholds, leaving in their wake death and destruction.

Usually the villages along the seacoast of the Visayas were the ones which suffered most. Many of the inhabitants were captured and sold as slaves. In 1621, Colonel Hernando de los Rios, a Spanish fort commander in Mindanao, estimated that some ten thousand Christians were captured and sold to rich Moslem datus.

At times some valiant villagers would offer resistance but their fear of the enemy would force them to withdraw after a brief skirmish. In that chaotic period, the hopeless inhabitants could never go out to sea without encountering the possible danger of falling into the hands of roving pirates. For several years the natives lived in a constant state of fear.

Along Aklan the pirates concentrated their raids in the minoro of Batang, which comprises Jemino and the fishing villagers of Lagatic, now known as New Washington. These are the domains of Datu Kalantiao, the famous lawgiver. The pirates’ favorite lurking place was Tinagong Dagat, a capacious cave near this township. The peaceful waters of the secluded bay provided an ideal harbor where the rogues could easily land their vintas.

Each time the Moros were sighted on the bay, drums and bugles would signal their presence. But this public alarm did not prove effective enough in the widely scattered communicates. Those who failed to hear the alarm would often fall reluctant prey to the foraging bandits.

The daring escape of Ora Guyang from the pirates and how her quick wits saved her life is a favorite story in Batang. The Moros were returning to their vintas after a raid during which Guyang was captured when nightfall overtook them on the trail. It was necessary for the raiders to rest and wait for daylight before resuming their homeward journey. Guyang made a dash for freedom in the darkness while her abductors were fast asleep.

She ran fast and as far as her legs could carry her. Nonetheless, dawn found the fleeing girl too far away from the safety of their community. Gravely worried that the Moros would recapture her, she thought it wise to retrace her footsteps on the sand to a wrong direction to mislead her pursuers. Then she took refuge in a thickly leafed branch of a tall tree. Only when certain that the Moros had left the islands did she climb down her perch, after several days of hiding. Guyang’s relatives were very glad to see her alive after given her up for lost.

It was amid such wide-felt despair and suffering that the idea of the bell took birth. The harassed people, who could no longer endure the continued Moro raids, summoned a council to seek ways and means of improving their vigilance. A wise old chieftain presiding over the gathered clan emphasized the great need for a device that would better secure the safety of the villagers. Someone suggested that a bell could speedily spread the alarm. Assign a sentinel to keep a sharp look-out, said another. The tall hill in Jemino would be just the right place for the project—this was the clincher that convinced all.

The heights command a good view of beaches in Batang. From the distance the approach of the enemy could be easily detected. The ringing of the bell would then alert the natives even when the pirates were still far out in the sea. To produce an effectively powerful sound, it was decided that the bell would be cast in silver. This would audibly bring into the ears of everyone the presence of danger.

It was the traditional Barangay spirit of the Visayans that helped make the white bell of Jemino possible. For as soon as contributions were exacted, hoards of moldy Spanish pesetas and silver coins were dug up from hiding places until a large heap glittered in the house of the chieftain. A blacksmith immediately sets to work. After a full week the silver bell was finished. The workmanship turned out to be excellent. Though of normal size, the bell was loud enough to be heard throughout the outlying villages. As planned, the silver bell was hung on a lookout post erected above the hill.

The next time the villages were imperiled, a lookout rang the white bell and the tolling reverberated across the glen bringing the message of danger. The alert gave the natives enough time to bundle their precious belongings and hide in the interior forests and surrounding marches. So it came to pass that the trustworthy bell which had saved many lives and much property soon became an object of superstitious reverence.

In no time the Moros became curious when they found deserted communities where nothing of value could be taken. Again and again their forays turned fruitless. In danger they put to the torch all abandoned huts. Precautioned, the inhabitants were already able to arm themselves and had on some occasion succeeded in driving away the buccaneers. This so enraged the pirates that they resolved to put an end to this mischief. Finally, the information about the existence of the silver bell filtered into their ears.

One day, the crafty enemy stole upon the village of Batang at noontide of a sultry summer’s day and surprised the inhabitants in the midst of their siestas. The pirates were out to capture the bell in Jemino. An excited native seized a conch-shell and blew a resounding blast that electrified the air. In an instant a stultifying scene broke out among the inhabitants.

A buxom maiden who was on her way to fetch water from a distant spring froze on her path when she heard the familiar sound. In panic she quickly ran back toward her village, forgetting her bamboo container in the spring. Suddenly, a pirate appeared on her tracks. Since then nothing was ever heard of the poor Olegaria.

In Jemino, the inhabitants were in a state of confusion. The old men, terrified, left whatever tasks they were doing and fled in the direction of the hills. The women, so great was their terror, gathered their children and ran. In the sudden excitement loose sayas were recalled to have simply slid off some slender waists. Others just forgot everything and scampered towards the jungles top hide.

Amidst the hue and cry, a lean warrior ran to the hilltop and quickly scanned the beach in the direction of Batang. Peering from the heights he had a bird’s-eye-view of the sea below him. His heart froze for a moment at the sinister sight that greeted his eyes. An enormous fleet of vintas was spread over the bay of Tinagong Dagat. The sun glided their bellying canvas as they rode at anchor along the shallows. They were greater in number than at any time before. Then the excited lookout rang the bell with frightened inhabitants as they crouched behind bushes and above trees awaiting their fate.

Back in the village the braves deployed a distance from the sitios and put up a posture of defense. Intelligence had reached the villagers that the Moros were going inland to take possessions of the bell. The chieftain had exhorted his followers to save it at all costs and the natives braced for a fight. Talibongs, bamboo lances, bows and arrows bristled among the men.

Among the motley defenders was one Paciong, who staged a one-man attack and bravely routed a vinta which was full of the enemy. Riding a banca in the dead of the night, he surreptitiously rowed towards the place where the Moros had anchored their vintas. Paciong quickly jumped into one and hacked a sleepy sentry before he could utter a cry. The rest he annihilated by skewering their nipa cabins with his bamboo lance. He impaled many of his sleeping enemies. The others who were able to wake in time spilled into the water to escape certain death.

When his feat became known to the Moros, the pirates fumed with revenge, and with augmented audacity became more determined to snatch the white bell. The marauders established a cotta near the shores of Batang as a base of operations. They continued to forage inland in search of the white bell during the siege that lasted for weeks. When captured was imminent, the natives acted quickly and took the white bell down and hid it deep in the river’s bottom.

Time has since filled the river with alluvial deposits from the rich top soil of eroded farmlands fringing the banka, even as modern political growth has reduced the boundaries of Jemino to the size of a small barrio peopled in recent years by a scant circle of farmers. The site of Jemino is already known today as Altavas named after the honor of the late Capiz assemblyman who authored the bill that converted the old barrio into a municipality.

Misty-eyed old folks, proud descendants of the original tribes, would still narrate, often in the innocent exercise of their fancy, the amusing and the tragic experiences their forebears had in defense of the white bell. Relics of the struggle in the form of a rutted fortification can still be seen today. Other interesting incidents, already tinted with superstition, have become myths which are stored only in the memory of the inhabitants.

Natives living near the bank of Bucayan claim that they often hear weird noises coming from the river. Is this the breeze passing through the bamboo thickets growing profusely along the banks, or is it the sound of the wood-nymphs singing as they keep eternal watch over the silver bell?

Legend of Aklan

Leopoldo A. de la Cruz,

Sunday Times Magazine, March 19, 1961, pp. 16-17

A long time ago, there lived in this part of the Aklan river a man called Paumod. He had a son by the name of Dagasanan who, like his father, was a hunter. Ever since he had learned to hunt by himself alone, this boy was always in the forest of Kagoyuman which covered half of the back of Mount Daeogdog.

In this mountain lived the gods, according to the inhabitants of Aklan. The most powerful of them was Gamhanan who was the giver of life, security, and livelihood. But like any other gods, he also punished erring residents.

When summer came and trhe Aklan river bed turned dry and the soil caked, the people believed that Gamhanan in daeogdog was angry at them for their sins and had caused the drought and burned up the vegetation.

Again, when the rainy season came and lightning damaged animals and broke trees and split mountainsides, the people said that Gamhanan was angry because they had failed to offer a portion of their good harvest to his dwellings in the cave.

In Mount Daeogdog there were times when the people used to hear the bleating of the white panigotlo during the full moon. The pangotlo was a deer with full antlers. And this deer was often seen dashing across the river stream like a shaft of light. But the people never molested this pet of the gods; neither did they permit anyone to catch it.

If this animal was heard bleating before midnight during full moon, the people concluded that nothing bad would befall any villager and that anything that the farmers would plant the following day would become fruitful and abundant. But if the bleating was heard after midnight, the inhabitants believed something bad would happen: a flood to wash away their homes, farms and domestic animals, or blood spilled on the land.

One night, when the moon was full, this white panigotlo was heard bleating. The people learning of the event prepared their seedlings for the morrow. A camp fire was built near the river bank where the farmers, hunters, and fishers converged to join the thanksgiving gathering.

In the midst of the merriment, there appeared from across the river bank the figure of a man with a heavy load on his back. A sense of foreboding seized the people.

The people watched this figure. It moved on, then slowly descended the banks with difficulty and waded across the lazy stream towards the caked river bed. He followed the beaten path towards the clearing where the people were.

When he neared them, the people recognized him—Dagasanan, Paumod’s son, the hunter. The man lowered his load—the carcass of the enchanted white panigotlo!

The people stared in horror as the hunter and the dead deer.

“why did you lay your hands on Gamhanan’s pet? “ the people cried, raising their spears. “You’re a curse! A curse! A curse!”

Dagsanan turned on his heels and dashed awayas fast as he could but a spear caught him before he could get away. On the edge of the bank that rose from the dry river bed, he staggered and fell. Then the other men fell upon him with spear and blade. Meanwhile, another group raced to the hut of Paumod whom they also slew without warning.

That night thunder boomed in the countryside and the rains fell. The waters rose and flooded the river banks. There was devastation in the lowland areas at the foot of Mount Daeogdog. The people felt the wrath of Gamhanan.

Dagasanan’s body was washed away, but on the spot where he fell, there grew an inyam tree. That arm of river where falls the shadow of this tree was named after thus youth. On this very spot drowning occurs often. Dagasanan’s vengeance—every year a child is claimed for what their forefathers had done!

Mothers always warn their children not to go bathing in that side of the river the day after a booming sound is heard among the rocks. The people say it is Dagasanan groaning with pain and telling everyone that he was waiting for his next victim. Rufo’s son was around last year. And a farmer’s son across the river disappeared the year before.

On the spot where Paumod was killed another inyam tree grew. And it is said that during full moon natives sometimes notice a strange shadow flying from this tree to the other inyam tree by the riverbank where it will disappear while dogs howls in the distance.

May Aswang sa Idaeum It Baeay

Habatian Ko Eang Ra sa Magueang Ko, Melchor F. Cichon

Natabo ra sa Baryo Sta. Cruz, Lezo, Aklan. Mga 1957 siguro rato.

Si Nay Diday Felomino nga taga-Sta. Cruz, Lezo, hay nagaeaha it puto. Aga-aga kon imaw mag-eaha it puto.

Ro baeay nanday Nanay Diday hay mga waeong piyes ra kataason ag ro andang saeog hay butong. Sa uto ku andang baeay hay may mga liay. Gina-amak na ra kon imaw magdap-ong o kon imaw mag-eaga it tubi para sa anang puto.

Isaeang aga-aga, samtang nagaeaha imaw it puto sa andang kusina, may nabatian imaw nga may nagakaeas-kaeas sa idaeum ku andang baeay. Sigurado imaw nga bukon it baboy aynakatangkae ro andang baboy.bukon man it andang ayam ay ro sambilog nanda nga ayam hay bag-o eang nana nakita nga naga-euko sa andang sala. Bangod nga eain gid ro nagakaeas sa andang idaeum hay ginhaon ni Nanay Diday ro sangka hurmanan nga lata nga may nagabukae nga tubi ag gulpi nana ra nga gin-uea sa may lugar kon siin nana nabatian ro nagakaeas.

Ag gulpi dayon nabatian ni Nay Diday nga may nagsinggit it aruy nga boses it magueang nga baye. Ag ingko may nagdaeagan.

Pagkaagahon hay nagbantog sa amon nga baryo nga ro ginakuno-kuno nga aswang nga si Lola Maria sa Takas hay napaso ra bilog nga eawas ag nagapaeaea sa andang kubo. Owa man imaw gindaea sa ospital ku ana nga bana nga magueang eon man ay owa man abi sanda’t kwarta. Gineampuean eang kuno nanda it ugbos it saging.

Isaea pa basi masayran kon ano ro natabo kana.

Pagkataliwam it mga tatlong adlaw, ro magueang nga baye hay namaetay

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Poem by Philippe Mijares

Amored is a pen name of Philippe Mijares. He is an Aklanon. He has a blogspot where his poems are being posted. This is the first time that his works will be read in this site.
Except for the first poem, the rest are unedited. --Melcichon


nagaeupad-eupad ro ing paino-ino
samtang nagahueat ro eangit-
imo nga eangit
nga permi mo ginapasyaran;
ag baeay,
bangud owa ka abi
ro daean nga maeamig
nga gintun-an mo eon nga mahaeon.

Tao eani
pero ham-at ngisi man kimo
ro mga bituon sa palibot...

Ag owa ka man gatangis.
Di ba indi eon?
Bisan owa eon ing mga ginikanan.
Bangud ginahibaygan ka man abi nanda
ag ginapil-an ing baeay
dungis ka abi,
owat paligos
sa andang pamantawon

Pero hasayran mo
nga indi nanda maabot ing eangit
ag ikaw
nga gapaeupad-eupad sa andang aeagyan.

A Bell Tolls for Angelus

A bell tolls for Angelus
when the clock strikes six in the evening-
everybody stop to pray.
But Angelus will never be heard
in the silenced countryside,
under the blanket of deafening reports


ang inuusal ng bumubuhos na ulan
para sa mga puntod
ng nilimot na ng hinagap.
unti-unti nitong binubura ang bakas ng nagdaan
tinatangay ng mga mumunitng along
tutungo sa pagsibol ng mga bulaklak.

Sanda nga Naghibayag

Sanda nga nag-ubra it daean
tulay ag bilding,
palasyo sa mga hari-
pero nagatinir sa payag-payag;
nagaginhawa it kabuhi sa kadueoman
it nga mina.
Sanda nga ginhigtan ro anda nga oras
sa mga pabrika
para mabuhi-
pero owat kahilwayan;
nagapaligos it hueas
pero owa gareklamano.
Sanda nga nagapatindog it matayog nga mga skyscrapers
ag nagapila sa idaeom-
ro kapitalista
bugaeon nga nagataas it dahi
sa atubang it anang kongkreto nga korona.
Sanda nga naga-ubra it manggad
pero owa it paga-akuon biskan bakud
kundi ro andang sarili.
Nabatian ko ro andang makaieibog nga martsa.
Isaeang kanta,
halin sa dughan it anda nga kalisod,
it pagbutlak it adlaw.


Gintadtad it mapinu nga mapino ro pwersa’t pag-ubra sa taeom it kapital
agud mabuytan it hugot ag madali nga maihurma
sugun sa gusto it tag-ana it paubrahan o pabrika
o kung sin-o man ro amo.
Igapaligid sa pag-eouk, sa hadlok ag sa pagloko
agud maging manami gid sa panglasa it mga sueok nga gabakae.
Pagkatapos, pahapa-un it tag-ana sa owat katapusan nga kontraktwalisasyon
ag pagapuston sa owat kasiguruhan.
Igahilera sa iskaparate it atong banwa, igadisplay, baligya
sa preyo nga dumugon it mga buwaya.
Eahaon sa sarili nga mantika samtang gasinadya ro mga kapitalista
sa hueoyapong ginansya
ag nagangirit nga itau sa nagaeaway nga kustomer
kaibahan ro sarsa it matam-is nga mga pamisaea ag mahaeang nga pagkabugaeon.
Posted by amored at 9:10 PM 0 comments

Paghueat ag Pagmahae

Ro paghueat hay pagmahae
sa adlaw nga owa it kasiguruhan
sa oras nga gin-atiguhan nga amiguhon
dahil dapat
para taw-an it kabuhi ro damgo
nga mabuhay eon nga ginahutik-hutik
sa dueonggan it hangin.
Ag pagkatapos hay ro pag-aku
sa pakpak it paea-abuton
ro maeapad nga eangit it kahidlaw
sa maeamig nga alima it gabii.

Ro pagmahae hay paghueat
sa ginhawa nga nagpakatawo sa kaugalingon
sa tagipusuon nga nagbulig it pag-eaom
it kabuhi ag kamatayon
dahil dapat
para hueaman it pwersa eoman
sa panibag-o nga pag-eayo
paadto sa nagadabadaba nga eogta.
Ag idto sa naga-umpisa nga pag-iempon it hangin ag kaeayo
hay ro madahan nga pagpamatyag
sa oras it paghueag it atong kalibutan
sa pag-isaeahon.
Ro paghueat hay pagmahae.
Ro pagmahae hay paghueat.

Indi Malipatan ro hangin

Indi malipatan ro hangin
ag ro anang maeamig nga haru
sa nagakatueog pa
nga kalibutan
samtang gasinaut-saut ro kaeayo
it pagbutaw
sa kadueoman it palibot;
ro panihue it mga huyop
sa kasalinsingan
samtang nagapamati ro adlaw
sa masadya nga pagsinaeabatan.
Indi malipatan ro hangin
ag ro anang manabi-abihun nga pagkupkop
sa kadanggahan it adlaw
samtang ginahuyap-huyap
it eugta
ro pageohud
it hueas
ag eawas;
ro sunlog it mga pagtikeod
sa duyan
it kahilwayan
samtang nagapamatyag ro dueonggan
sa ginhawa it kagueangan.
Indi gid malipatan.
Ah! Indi gid malipatan ro hangin
it gakinagisi nga kasangag
sa dughan
it kadueom ag kahayag
sa tunga it mga singgit ag tangis
it kabuhi
nga gintuob it sanglibo ag sambatong
pagsukoe sa pagkatimawa.
Ag ro kanta it tawo!
Nagaeampos sa ap-at nga poste
it kampo
nagatamboe it kadaugan!
nagatamboe it kadaugan!