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ON PITFALLS & STARS
Erle Frayne Argonza y Delago

Man,
In times when mind’s soaked
in an intoxicating concoction
of rage and fiery resentment
ought not battle against pitfalls

that are really no pitfalls
when gauged against virtues
that they unintendedly unlock

for such virtues are ever present
in the labyrinth of pursuits
awaiting to float to the surface
of riverine Existence

no matter how inconspicuous these are;
they are stars that are forever
habituating the firmaments
in grandiose beauty,

despite dark clouds
despite dark clouds

[Writ. 02 June 1988, Proj. 8, Quezon City, M.Manila.]

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THOUGHTS ON ACTION
Erle Frayne Argonza y Delago

Actions of a kind
And those of others
Ever demand a plethora of decisions
Whether erroneous to some quarters
Or righteous to the rest.
The mind fulfills the thinking
Balanced with the doing
In a majestic rhythm
Of poetry and calculus,
Tempered by Justice
And the quest of the Will,
Astride the vehicle of Wisdom
Fueled by noble Inspiration,
It measures the outcome
Whether least appealing or best.

[Writ. 02 June 1988, Proj. 8, Quezon City, M.Manila.]

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SONGBIRD’S MELODY
Erle Frayne Argonza y Delago

Songbird of the country
Please sing your tunes tirelessly
On valleys and hills
Sing afloat your theatre of amusement!

You are forever rewarded
With rice, shelter, care
By humble folks who truly cherish you.

Sing!
Sing for them! – the poor and wretched—

They who were left forlorn
By trusted lords
By false guardians of welfare
By deified magnates;
They who are now casting
New lives for themselves
New hopes toward betterment.

O! Songbird so dear!
Lift them up from slumber!

[Writ. 26 May 1988, Proj. 8, Quezon City, M.Manila.]

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ASPIRATION

Erle Frayne Argonza y Delago

O! Aspiration!
You majestic road
To where all are brought
To fate’s myriad conclusions,

You are beheld
As a plane in Pythagoras’ universe
Contained in Euclid’s space
A foot away to grasp in an instance.

Yet how come that you,
In each one’ pathway
Seem millions of miles away,
Far beyond anyone’s reach?

O! Aspiration!
Please don’t appear as any
Unconquerable chimera
To willful beings
To the willful.

[Writ. 26 May 1988, Proj.8, Quezon City, M.Manila.]

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ABOARD TRICYCLES, JEEPNEYS, FERRIES
Erle Frayne Argonza y Delago

Well they do
Carry you
To your travel’s destination

These tricycles
Jeepneys
Ferries

Hallmarks of tropical Filipiniana
Whose travel trails are mixtures
Of well paved avenues
And dusty rugged roads

They do make your tours
Altogether fascinating and crucifying

Even as the good buses
Flashy yatch and jet planes
That cater your travels
Lead your ocular organs to witness
The tapestry of wretchedness
And inertia of blighted villages
That altogether inevitably erases
The shangrilaic imageries about the tropics
That may gather in your mind
Like clouds over the Sierra Madre
That the Pacific wind eagerly dissolves.

[Writ. 09 Oct. 1987, Proj. 8, Quezon City, M.Manila.]

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CHEERFULNESS

Erle Frayne Argonza y Delago

Cheerfulness
Is never allowed to be dormant
Among children
In whose currents it
Freely flows
When it erupts
Like sunbursts
That all other cosmic bodies
Gladly accept
As life blessings.

[Writ. 09 Oct. 1987, Proj. 8, Quezon City, M.Manila.]

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DANCE NOT ON THE GALLERY’S FLOOR

Erle Frayne Argonza y Delago

No one should linger in a gallery
To dance on its floor.

The Cardinal
Has spoken. The clockwork
Of deception has flung open
Its can of worms. Churchwords
Don’t always bear powers
Of ex cathedra. The cardinal is human.

Schoolboys care for ice cream and delicatessen
On their classes’ end
They do not read their books’ pages’ lines
Nor recite oral tests to their masterteacher.
School breaks are not school days.

Guerillas
Are trapped int eh underground.
They do fall
And they’ve fallen before
As before had their minds
Been preset to consume instinctively
Their warehouses’ rummaged goods:
The goods are dwindling and no more
Are these
What peoples
Notice, or wear, or prefer.

Let no one
find Christmas trees
on summertime
not on summertime!

And those songbirds from Siberia
They whose flights to the south
As winter approaches
Curiously add spices to the blowing winds
The wind drafts bear them nearer
To the equator
Where they merge with the life forms
Of the tropics
And then they’d go northward
When the icy days of their homeland dissipate
Into the blasts of warm breezes of summertime.
They only make flights upon
The summons of their wing carriers.

Even ants have trails
That are propagated by the aromatic
Odors oozed by their feet
Or the feet of their advanced seekers
In hot pursuit
Over sweet
Merchandise.

There are no sighs of relief
On painful moments
No mimicking of sufferings
On circumstances of heightened euphoria.

For sooner as the die is cast
It reads aloud the number registered
On its face. It settles
Gracefully on the flat panel board where
It landed with few rattles.

Cortes
The conquistador never epitomized the good
Nor the search for peace
The elusive end of existence.
Christ
Shan’t ever be remolded in a new image
To reappear as his own nemesis.

A glass that holds water
Will show the way to its utility
Drink the water
Drink to live

[Writ. 28 Sept. 1987, Univ. of the Philippines, QC.]

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