Poetry by | July 23, 2017

My sister’s skin is amber
Like my mother’s.
and her mother.
And the proud women before us.
Kissed by the yellow
Burning globe,
Cooled by tropical rains.
Warmed by days
In the river.

My sister keeps
On asking me
“Why am I dark?”
I told her
“When you were born
You took the sun
And kept it inside you.
You gave it a home.”
She clutched her chest
And answered
“Do you know how
To take it out?”

She wants
To take out
The sun within her.
The same warmth
Which makes her cheek blush,
The same warmth
That leaves pink traces on your skin.
The same warmth
That makes her smile light up the room.
So I tell my sister,
“You can’t. You don’t have to.”

Because you are
Every inch
Muscle and bone
Of great women before you.
Your hands can take the stars,
And your voice can name them.

Mirrors and gazes don’t define you
Don’t live your life through their eyes.
You are literature untold.
You are stories made every day.
Your body. You being. Your life.
Your choices.
You make them.
Your life is yours to live.

Don’t take the sun out inside of you
For people
who know nothing about
Your skies.
Or for people
Who wish to make clouds
On sunny days.

Your warmth makes the world
Less cold.
Don’t take out the sun inside you.
Don’t let them kill your fire.
Stand firm,
And watch them burn.

Adeva hails from Cagayan de Oro City. She took up Bachelor of Secondary Education – Major in English in Xavier University – Ateneo de Cagayan. She is currently working on her Masters in Education thesis in the same institution. She teaches English in Xavier University Junior High School. She is connected with NAGMAC (Nagkahiusang Magsusulat sa Cagayan de Oro) and has been a fellow in the 1st Cagayan de Oro Writers Workshop. When not crying over her thesis, she paints, practices Karate and sleeps.

For a good reason

Poetry by | February 1, 2015

Do not make me keep my promises
Easily because
Mornings bring age
You will kiss my tired eyelids
With thinned lips
Sounds pass them
Cracked but still soothing
To my hardly-hearing ears
Reassuring, lovingly cooing
Bringing to mind
The Mayas that we were
Flitting from branch to branch
As if there was no tomorrow
Tomorrow just came to visit
Waiting for his overdue call
I found myself wearing my skin
Like my Sunday dresses you used to
Throw on the floor
Now kept neatly folded
Inside the ancient doors
That smell of mothballs and decay
Your hands were Bangkas
Sailing over my smooth seas
Now they are traversing
through rough waves and storms
I fear it may sink
The wires on my head that used
To be the night
Are now ashes
From a well-stroked fire
Which you try to resuscitate
To no avail
Do not make me keep my promises
I used to swear ‘i will never leave you’
But then
One night
I grasped you hand tightly
Then, like my breath, let it slip away

Adeva is from Cagayan de Oro City, currently an English teacher in Xavier University High School.