remember the bamboo tiger cages in those goddamn
movies. and napalm, sinister rain, deathly
tangerine vapor veiling the islands, for
simulation's nothing like the real thing. the
real thing. the real thing. military choppers
of film script, steel demon birds, called away to
quell real life dictatorship's farthest outposts
of rebellion. who among us could've told the
difference? they have mistaken my home for a
hollywood set of your home. even my language was
a stand-in for yours. your country is not a war.
my country is no longer mine. this i wished to
tell you, because i was thinking of coming home
today i am through with your surface acts of
contrition, i am through witnessing your mimicry
of prescribed other, your fervor for the part.
your self-damnation for your fervor. dear cycle
of transgression and redemption, for that is what
you are, dear love, godless, but for tokens,
honorary titles, footnotes in their dust covered
tomes. once, even up until yesterday, my
compassion for you, the tenderness of our
peripheral geographies, seduced me. i wanted so
much this kinship for which you feign
indifference. i am through with your parades and
affectations, your self-damnation for your
feigning, your survival rationale mass appeal. i
can no longer bear the sight of you paid but not
recompensed, claimed, theirs. i swore i loved you
once. but now i have grown w(e)ary. dear love, i
too am culpable, perhaps i am even uncivil, but i
can no longer honor you.
and then there is tomorrow, dear promise, dear
mirror, to test my skin with your forked tongue.
Copyright © 2006 Philippine American Writers and Artists, Inc.