MOMENT OF ILLOGIC: Poetry on the Ampatuan Massacre


I am not a poet. At least, I do not find it easy to write poetry. But the day after the November 23, 2009 Ampatuan town (Maguindanao) massacre, there was no way to turn down Philippines Graphic managing editor Joel Salud‘s call for writers of all stripes to create an Anthology of Rage.

I will post — with help from Joel — some of the poetry from those first 100 writers to respond. For now, here is my modest contribution to that anthology, the 4th poem ever written in (then) 47 years of existence.

MOMENT OF ILLOGIC

We wash down fears in brew 

amid neon’s glare

and now clamp teeth

on trembling lips 

as fingers press black knobs

that pace  the rush of images:

Flesh and bones and teeth 

and hair trapped in clumps of earth. 

Craft flies, deserts us

in this moment of illogic

when minds shirk

the normal quest for answers.

We dread the cackle of blood lust 

awaiting intrepid souls 

who dare peek behind the backhoe.


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