An Old Manang on a Hot Afternoon in Cabrera Street

Poetry by | November 13, 2011

Old Manang
As my watch ticked three in the afternoon
I lay daydreaming, sweating on my bed.
The heat, tempting the corners of the room
biting my skin, getting me exhausted.
I put on my clothes and slowly walked out,
Watched the street with honking cars and tricycles
Passing by and heard tambays talk about
a bayot with big breasts and pierced navel
clinging to the arm of the white man beside him.
Craving for something to wet my mouth with,
I stopped at Hermo’s and got caught
by a young man’s melting look
driven as if by a lost question or a trance.
My thirst grew more. I wanted to bed him
and let the heat boil down my desires.
Yet as quickly as my lust grew, shame fell on me;
How crazy to let my lust feed
on this beautiful youth! My mean thoughts,
an ageless torture. Walking out fast, I
end up buying and sucking two salty hot orbs
of balut from a peddler, my mind
doomed by the hot, dusty, and tired afternoon.

Lyda May D. Sual is a BA English graduate of UP Mindanao.

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