A Heart for Madness

Poetry by | February 9, 2014

(after Paulo Coelho’s Veronika Decides to Die)

Visit my dreams, Veronika,
when you finally decide
to die. Wake me from my slumber
with the melody of your sonatas
behind the echoes of your cries.
Make me mad, make me mad,
if only madness would set me freer
than the rest of the humanity.

I’d love to have the freedom
of whom they call crazy:

the youth who love to taste tongues
without fear of nakedness,

the kids who believe that lizards talk
without fear of whips and pinches,

the man who first said that the earth is round
without fear of rolling down the dark abyss,

the young friar who gave his riches
just to live with beggars

to teach them to talk to birds
and to snakes and to flowers

when the sane do not know
how to listen.

I’d love to have their courage
to show their madness,
for the soul of insanity
is freedom.
Only madmen eat
leftover fried chicken
that the sane call waste.
Only madmen rise up
when the sane keep dreaming.
Only madmen scream to curse
poverty, which the sane
call blessedness.
Nobody’s freer than the madmen
who fear of losing nothing
but their chains.

Veronika, when you finally
decide to die, visit my dreams.
When I wake up, I shall be mad.
I will go to the mountains
to sing, to live, to kill,
to love.

And you will understand.

Paul Randy P. Gumanao is a licensed chemist, journalist and literature enthusiast. He was fellow at the 2009 Davao Writers Workshop & 2010 Iyas National Creative Writing Workshop in Bacolod. He writes poetry & fiction.

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