High Street

Lights festooned from the trees
Christmas carols in the air
The chill of the December air
Quick hellos
Stolen glances
An imminent goodbye
Unspoken I love you’s

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Walang Title

Duon sa High Street may nagrequest
Muli raw akong tumula sa Ingles
Yung malaking Christmas tree sana ang peg

Ngunit datapwat subalit
Wala akong maisip
Sapagkat ikaw ay di kapiling
Kahit pa nakailang kape
Blangko pa rin ang papel…

(Kahit nakakita ng gwapong Italyanong kalbo, iba pa rin ang inspirasyon na dulot ni ___________)

A. Coco
B. Piolo
C. Jamie Dornan – ang hirap irhyme

Note to self: proof why I did not shine bright like a diamond in the poetry class

Thoughts

When I go home late at night and the streets are almost empty, I think of you.  I think of you when I cross the street and see headlights approaching me.

 

I think of you when I am standing on the platform of a train station especially when it is crowded and people spill into other lanes like when a river inundates and floods the communities surrounding it.  I think of you when I am on the verge of that red area, teasing it, tempting, then I’ll hear the shrill sound of the guard’s whistle.  I know though that if I fall onto the tracks, you might be there to catch me.  I know you would be there if the train is already nearby.

 

I don’t quite understand why people are scared of you; why we don’t talk about you while you are as natural as the air we breathe; why many banish you from their thoughts when you cross their minds like that could ever make them escape you.  But I think of you many times.  I think of you when I am in bed at night and imagine that you would come when I am asleep…  Would you please be gentle?  I don’t want to feel any pain when you come.

 

And while you could also bring pain, how often have I thought of you when I was in pain, thinking that you would be the only one that could assuage whatever grief I was feeling?  The thought of you alone during those times had brought me imagined peace…imagined…because while you are as natural as breathing, as inhaling and exhaling, as sleeping and eating, meeting you to relieve my pain is an escape, an act of cowardice.

 

I know I will meet you one day.  That day is inevitable for as sure as the sun rises in the morning and is replaced by the moon at night, you will come…at an uncertain time.  Aaahh, there are so many uncertainties nowadays like the coming of the rain during the summer season in a tropical country…but you have never changed.  You have always been around.  I know you will come, though at an uncertain time.  I would like to be prepared for you.

 

ca. 2009

What the Rain Brings

The sky is downcast again today. At seven in the morning, a gray presence
was looming over the city. There’s news of rain, of a storm actually…a
storm in May, in summer. Isn’t it odd? Do you know that I remember you
when it rains?
You crossed my mind when I looked at the gray sky today, when I stepped
out of my house expecting to be greeted by the summer heat, but instead,
there was the gloomy presence of the still air. Then, I caught myself: I have
said goodbye, I should stop remembering you when it rains.
June is just within reach. I can already hear its sound—the start of the
season of rain. I don’t want to think of you whenever it rains in June, or in
July. Because my memories of you bring pain…and confusion…and I don’t
want those…not anymore. I have said goodbye.
But, maybe, I need the rain. I need the rain not to remind me of you but to
wash away every memory that I still have of you, to wash away even the
littlest trace you still have in my mind and in my heart.
Today, I felt fear when I realized that the rain still reminds me of you. And I
can’t go on feeling afraid of the rain just because it reminds me of you,
because I need the rain, I have been asking for rain in this warm, sticky
summer season. And the rain came, and the memories of you came…and I
was afraid…but if the rain will wash you away from my being, then I will
welcome it even more, even the monsoon season.
ca. 2009

Demystifying You

You came into my life unexpectedly, unannounced
Causing an excited hush, a quiet rush.
And one day, we sat opposite each other
And you opened your mind to me
And I found renewed hope –
A pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

But days turned to weeks that turned to months
And we are still here, just here.
Your mere presence astounds me
As I decode your words, your questions.
You are a puzzle
That my mind cannot solve.

Reflections on Leadership

There are many schools of thought about leaders and leadership and 2016 is the year I learned about leadership deeply through my own personal journey, although I did not plan for it or intended to be in a leadership position.

I wrote the following reflection about leadership some time in July:

In a perfect world, there should be a balance between character and competence, but I will prefer character any given day.

I value integrity and humility.  It is difficult to help proud and arrogant people but I have learned the humility can take people far.

I have a discomfort with positions of authority but I am learning leadership.  Authority and leadership are not synonymous.  Simon Sinek says, “People do not follow authority but they follow leaders.”

I believe that I cannot have full control over things, days, people, and life in general because I am divinely called so this leadership journey is something I am figuring out.

I have learned that:

You don’t need minions to be called a leader.  It is not about rank or hierarchy.  Leadership starts with the self, with self-awareness and self-mastery.

Self-mastery is tough.

I have learned that:

My job as a leader is not to raise minions but to raise leaders in the best way they can be.

People are not remembered by their achievements, but how they made an impact in the lives around them.

As the year draws to a close, I go back to the original model of leadership.  And His model is so different from how the world sees leaders and leadership and yet, more and more, people are asking for servant leadership not knowing what it really is all about.  I’d venture to say that if a person wants to be a great leader, then he must be a servant leader.  And to be such, he must know Jesus Christ.  Because 2,000 years from His death and resurrection, countless lives have been changed by His wisdom and works and the works of His followers…if you do not consider that effective leadership, I do not know how else we can call it.

Mark 10 (New Living Translation)

43But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, 44and whoever wants to be first among you must be the slave of everyone else. 45For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

 

 

CITIES AT NIGHT

The streets are painted red not from the lights

The cities reek of a stench we cannot bear

Around the corner, screams we choose to unhear

Around the bend, tears we choose to unsee

And we shout KILL KILL KILL

Because we want CHANGE CHANGE CHANGE

We bear the blood on our hands

But lest we forget – we were also bought with blood.