(for my MSU-IIT IDS batchmates)
You sit where you are: at the heart
of the city, its mechanical throb
booming in your chest, or perhaps
under the shade of acacia trees
by the sea wall. The horizon hides
a life long over. You are there
also, in the old high school building,
yellowing in the pages
of a forgotten yearbook,
rusting in the trophy room
weathered by the glance of children
in polo shirts and pink skirts,
children who were once you,
you understand, even as you outgrew
yourself, those kalachuchi trees
in perpetual autumn. You have all
fallen like flowers. Into your
respective plots of soil. All else you leave
to the wind, to the passing
kick of black shoes
amid the crunch of gravel.
Or else you wait to be picked up and sniffed.
You sit where you are.
Raised in Iligan City, Arkay Timonera was a fellow at his hometown’s National Writers Workshop in 2010. He studies in Silliman University.