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I woke up one morning

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wanting to be a cat

I actually wanted to become a lion

or a tiger

But none of these exist here in the Metro

or in the country

Except of course

At the decades-old Manila zoo

Whose zoo keepers look fatter than the hippos,

elephants, zebras

and lion or tiger that they feed

I wanted to be cat to freely look for my own food,

Mine alone, not for others

they say cats abandon a house or a home

when it runs out of food,

such a practical creature
Oh Zebra, I also woke up one late afternoon,

Wishing to be a healthy zebra,

I really wanted to become a unicorn

But I felt old enough to wish that one

I just wanted to be different

To feel special, like that of zebra, with alternating

Strips of black and white, and what?

I slept and dreamt one day, I was transformed into a man.

Yes, a real man, they say.

Those who cut trees down,

Those who pet the dogs and slaughter the pigs (chicken, too)

Those who water the rose and orchids,

and illegally log Narras

In the name of money and fame

men acted worse than animals

and grow faster than any bean stalk

I slept and dreamt one day of being a man

And I wished and prayed

That His Highness

Wake me up

In this bad dream

And just turn me

Into one,

useful stone.

WILMOR PACAY 3RD

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