poetry and other works

Merlie M. Alunan worked for her Masters Degree in English at Silliman University in Dumaguete City, majoring in Creative Writing and studying under Edilberto K. Tiempo. She was a writing fellow of the Silliman University National Summer Writers Workshop and the UP Creative Writing Center. Most of the poems collected in this blogsite are from her first book collection, Hearthstone, Sacred Tree. The other works have also been published in local newspapers and other publications.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Duwa-duwa, Wititk-Witik sa Hangin

Sa bata pa ta, ato ang kalibotan sa dula.
Tanang matang sa dula.
Ginokdanay. Bulan-bulan. Siatom. Tatsi.
Luto-luto. Pusil-pusil. Tagol-tago. Munyika. Yoyo.
Gikan sa pagsidlit sa adlaw ngadto sa pagsawop.
Bisa’g sa atong damgo nagduwa lang gihapon ta.

Sa kita nagkahamtong, magaduwa lang gihapon ta.
Basketball, football, tennis, ug unsa pa diha.
Sa nagkagulang na, mausab ang atong pagaduwaan,
unya usahay di ta kahibawo kun tinuoray ba gyud
ang atong mga gipangbuhat o duwa-duwa ba hinuon.

Tungod sa kalisod sa kinabuhi, tungod sa mga kakuyaw,
kasakit, kabalaka sa mga panghitabo sa inadlaw-adlaw,
makalimot na tang mokatawa. Di na ta kahibawo makighagwa.
Sa atong kaugalingon ug sa atong mga minahal.
Moaslom ang atong pagbati, masakit ta.
Ang makatambal niana usahay, duwa.
Di nato hikalimtan nga naay gamayng bata
nikuyog gikan sa atong kagahapon, ug karon
nagpahipi luyo sa mga kunot sa atong nawong,
nagtago ilawom sa atong mga uban.
Kining bataana mangita gyud ug lingaw,
Ug kun malingaw siya, malingaw sad ta.

Ang arte usa ka paagi sa pagduwa.
Tihol-tihol, ambak-ambak,
Kuris-kuris sa papel, witik-witik sa hangin,
Duwa-duwa ni Kiti ug ni Merlie.

To Play, To Shoot the Wind by Merlie Alunan (translation)
When we were children, our world revolved in play.
All kinds of games.
We played chase.
From first light to last light we played.
We played even in our dreams.
We never stop playing even as grew older,
The games changed.
And sometimes we cannot tell
When were doing serious things
Or we’re just playing.
Life is hard. We face all kinds of fears,
all kinds of pains, so many things to worry about
every minute of the day.
So we forget to play.
We forget to pleasure ourselves,
even those we love.
Love sours. We become sick.
Sometimes the best cure is play.
We must never forget the little child
Who traveled the years with us, who now
Is hidden behind our lined faces,
Secreted under the white hairs on our head.
That child needs to play,
And when that child is happy
You’ll be happy too.
Art, too, is a kind of play.
The leap of the dance.
A whistled song.
Lines on paper.
Shooting the wind.
Kiti and Merlie, at play.

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