Ninth Day

Poetry by | July 13, 2014

‘Dy, thank you for visiting me
on this ninth day after my passing. 
It gets lonely here, the quiet nights,
the days I mistake for night.
Though I think I know
when it rains — the padded tapping
descends on me, smells of soil,
warmed by loam. It feels good.

‘My, it is already the ninth so quickly. 
But days pass by more slowly 
the fewer people there are at home. 
It gets lonely here, the empty bed,
the rustling drapes I mistake for you.
Though I would like to think
it is you who swings the doors
sometimes. It feels good.

‘My, the tree you wanted planted 
beside you is here, was here 
all along. Lucky you.
Rest now, you are in heaven now 
— you are beyond these things 
that people merely say. You are larger, 
like this tree taller than any of us.
Watch over me.

‘Dy, the sound of your steps on mud 
are as they were on our wooden floor.
Only moister. I am getting used
to this spot; over there some roots
reach out to me, keep me company.
After this ninth is the fortieth, but come too
on the tenth, eleventh… I feel warm 
when you watch over me.

Bj A. Patiño is currently working towards a masters degree in anthropology. A member of the Davao Writers Guild, he hopes that 2014 will be the year when he finally goes back to writing creatively.

Prosti & Snoman

Poetry by | March 30, 2008

In Boracay it’s Christmas
all year round, or at least
it’s always in anticipation
of some windfall from a white
fat guy, bearer of gifts: dresses,
perfume, jewelry, dinner, cash –
hopefully tagged with a clause
to marry in the future. For now
she needs to be naughty and nice,
play with him in the water,
be like the sea and lap him up;
he’ll have to buy her a halo-halo
to cool the hot elf down –
tearing open the presents for later.
For now he wants to stroll up
and down this wintry wonderland
(or at least she wonders if his snow
is any finer than her white sand);
she clings to the elbow of this man-tree,
the top of which she’d like to crown
with a star – later when he goes down.
For now she strains her legs to keep up
with him, walking on tiptoe to keep
her stilettos from sinking in the sand.