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translating himagsikan

yes, blood blossoms bright.
dadanak muli ang dugo, aking mahal.
out of its petals we'll raise the sun our ancestors lost
hahawiin ng sinag ang mapanlinlang na himpapawid
ripping orange through the smoke-clot sky, scarlet mouth, womb
bubuksan ang pulang bukid ng mga patay, katawang hinugot
stretched-strung-- violet expanse deep as bruises, a violence of cloud. our wrists
mula sa duguang ugat ng kalayaan. kinain ng ulap ang aking dila
ache: the rainless days are upon us, the air gapes for our bones. atop manila's walls
nang kinuha ng mga sundalo ang aking ina. sunugin, sunugin daw.
we burn. tongues of dry lightning split our skin open: still our mothers say
wala nang hiwaga sa mundo, kung ‘di man uyaying linamon ng dilim,
time will heal all wounds. even war. Anitun Tabu keens cobalt overhead, wheeling wide.
mainit na kamay sa aking pisngi. wala nang ibabalik pa. ito lamang:
look, the stars above our ember cities. soon the bayonets we broke will echo
rosaryong tanikala sa ating mga braso, kapirasong buwan sa buto
the old thirsts, the new songs we sing, our voices lifting dark and clear in the ruins
abo at lindol sa lalamunan, awit ng uhaw at kidlat, huni ng pangakong
when we return our names, free at last, at last, to the waiting sea.
lulunurin ng alon pati ang ating pangalan, lulunurin ang lahat.

translating revolution

yes, blood blossoms bright.
blood will flow deep once again, my love.
out of its petals we'll raise the sun our ancestors lost
searing blaze will part the treacherous skies
to rip orange through the smoke-clot sky, scarlet mouth, womb
will open the red fields of the dead, bodies wrenched
stretched-strung-- violet expanse deep as bruises, a violence of cloud. our wrists
from the blood-vein roots of freedom. the clouds ate my tongue
ache: the rainless days are upon us, the air gapes for our bones. atop manila's walls
as the soldiers took my mother. burn. they said: burn.
we burn. tongues of dry lightning split our skin open: still our mothers say
there is no more magic in the world, if not the lullabies the dark devoured,
time will heal all wounds. even war. Anitun Tabu keens cobalt overhead, wheeling wide.
hands hot on my cheek. there is nothing more to bring back. only this:
look, the stars above our ember cities. soon the bayonets we broke will echo
rosaries shackled to our arms, fragments of the moon in bone
the old thirsts, the new songs we sing, our voices lifting dark and clear in the ruins
ash and earthquake in throat, song of thirst and lightning, birdcall of the promise
when we return our names, free at last, at last, to the waiting sea.
the waves will drown even-also our names, will drown it all.



Dimas Ilaw is a Filipino writer. Their email is bagonglakambini@gmail.com.
Current Issue
20 May 2024

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