Monthly Archives: May 2011


she’s always had that knack for over reading the relation of events to one another.

allow her to put it more clearly. for instance, after receiving word that she got into silliman workshop, she looked back to those times that made it possible: her first attempt to write verses when she was a kid; the time in high school when she joined a club called Creative Writers Guild; that time when she met her mentor, ricci guevara, at taumbayan who rummaged inside her bag looking for her journal amidst sterile work documents; that time when she decided to take up M.A. studies; that time when she first met Gemino Abad in Poetry class; that time when she decided to join silliman workshop a week prior to the deadline; the pitiful moment when she bugged LBC personnel to ensure that her documents arrive on time (because the next day was the ultimate deadline). she is convinced that all these things conspired to fulfill one of her biggest dreams.

now, she’s made new friends, she has a new family (and that one is so rare for her you can’t even imagine). once in her high school year, she was desperate to find out the title of a song that had moved her deeply for months. she called up NU 107.5’s Saturday DJ on remote control weekend and sang the chorus to the DJ. the DJ played the song even if he told her that it’s been played on air hours ago.

when she lived in the writers’ village for three weeks, she met magnificent people. one turned out to be her kin when it comes to music. they both liked artists as tori amos and cranberries. they had songfests most evenings over beer and rhum and whatnot. they sang at the top of their voices, the trees lured by the light in their eyes.

now, she is posting this video to honor that friendship. “could we stay right here til the end of time til the earth stops turning?” this is the same song she pined for when she was in high school, the same song she crooned to the radio jock out of desperation to find out its title.

and when she sings this song now, she can feel its weight, knows its string of stories. she knows that if she is given the chance to go back to that lost time, she won’t feel as bewildered, as nude as a newborn, because she knows that in this future, she’ll have someone by her side, tremulous voices and all seizing the wind.

“here is true peace, here my heart knows calm.”

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a poem, a collage

Dear One Absent This Long While
by Lisa Olstein

It has been so wet stones glaze in moss;
everything blooms coldly.

I expect you. I thought one night it was you
at the base of the drive, you at the foot of the stairs,

you in a shiver of light, but each time
leaves in wind revealed themselves,

the retreating shadow of a fox, daybreak.
We expect you, cat and I, bluebirds and I, the stove.

In May we dreamed of wreaths burning on bonfires
over which young men and women leapt.

June efforts quietly.
I’ve planted vegetables along each garden wall

so even if spring continues to disappoint
we can say at least the lettuce loved the rain.

I have new gloves and a new hoe.
I practice eulogies. He was a hawk

with white feathered legs. She had the quiet ribs
of a salamander crossing the old pony post road.

Yours is the name the leaves chatter
at the edge of the unrabbited woods.


yesterday, i was asked to do a teaching demo as part of my teaching application in a university. it was nerve-wracking, to say the least. after my demo, i was planning to drown myself in music. alas, my mp3 player had no battery power. i didn’t have my journal with me. and who would want to write right after that near mishap? what happened next was sheer cam-whoring. and what happened after was another set of narcissus echoing. here’s the output. the cute girl is little delirium; the woman is ophelia as rendered by Sir John Everett Millais (all rights reserved to apt owners). the statement found on one side is the following: small girl marked for life. i am not sorry for this rare show of self-love.

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