• What remains


    Are buildings without roofs
    or house skeletons, shocking
    than dry skulls and bones
    piled up at the foot of the giant cross
    of the town’s public cemetery.
    are bodies lifeless like statues,
    being lined up by retrievers
    on muddy streets
    as if the dead can talk
    to identify themselves.
    are shattered gates,
    broken padlocks. Fences collapsed,
    revealing bamboo slats used
    in lieu of standard steel bars.
    are trees bending, leaves gone
    banana trunks laying flat on earth
    shoots coming out of bamboo
    buds by the river bank and lives
    slowly rising up from fragments
    of crumpled GI sheets, powderized
    hollow blocks and pavements.

    * * *

    Watching grandma at ICU

    I know you didn’t see me
    when I enter the room, sterile
    yet smells of medicines.
    Sitting beside your bed,
    I caress your hair,
    murmuring words,
    actually a prayer.
    Your eyes closed.
    Nose busy breathing
    through a small tube
    that links to a tank
    nearby. Sometimes,
    your hands move. Perhaps
    the only way you know
    of welcoming me this time.
    Just above your head,
    a screen monitoring
    your heartbeat, a line
    actively zigzagging
    within its limit.
    Until it folds itself flat,
    announcing an annoying
    news. I look outside
    through the glass window
    and feel a certain void in me
    upon seeing a Mahogany leaf
    falling from a branch
    without saying
    words of goodbye.


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