AT HOME WITH AUGUST

July 29, 2006

August seems to be a poetic month for this blogger. Looking at my portfolio, it seems that many of my poems get printed during this month. It is as if we are being prepared for our beerday in September.

Incidentally, my poem “Sa Crime Lab” is printed in the August issue of Home Life Magazine edited by Palanca Hall of Famer Leoncio Deriada. Once again, there seems to be some typo errors but here’s the correct version:
 

  SA CRIME LAB
 

  Sinilip sa microscope
  ang silid

  ng batang babae
  na pinid

  na pinto ang bibig
  at patay na ilaw

  ang salita.
  Nakita sa likido
  ang higaan:

  Kinakain ng neutrophils
  ang gonorrhoea–di pa malusaw.

  Bago lumipat sa sunod
  na request, sinulat sa findings:

  Gram negative diplococci.

  —Jose Jason L. Chancoco
Also, my article “The Chanters of Baao” is scheduled for publication on August 7 (Monday) in the Life section of The Daily Tribune.

Meanwhile, more poems:
    

  PASAKALYE KAY KAYE I

  1. Baryo mang may piyesta,
      Subalit kung wala ka,
      Parang ibang planeta.

  2. Ika’y paralumang di ko man makita
      Sa antok ng gabi’t sigla ng umaga
      Subalit wari ko’y lagi kang kasama
      Tulad ng sampagang ang samyo’y amoy pa.

  3. Ako ay buntala, Sinta.
      Masusunog sa haraya
      At babagsak sa tumana:
      Sulyap mo lamang, sapat na.
 

  4. Mainit na sinapna,
      Pagmawuw ika uda,
      Namit itum na raga.

  5. Usipun kading buut,
      Mig-anud, migpadagus.
      Maulug man su upus,
      Diri pa matatapus.

  6. Pagmata, paturug,
      Pagsapuy, parigus,
      Pagkape, pagnaug–
      Puso ko, naglinug!

  7. Karusun man na kinudkud, 
      Bagong tigbas man na ubud,
      Dawa tubig man sa nuyug–
      Tam-is mo, Kaye, da kaarug!
 

  DESPEDIDA KI MANOY FRANK

  Ika Manoy Frank, Uragun.
  Ika liwanag sa diklum,
  Dawa bugas na tinutung,
  Talagang papuputiun.

  Diri sana magpabitik
  Sa mga blondieng babaknit
  Ta di matapus a thesis
  Ta ipasungkat ki misis!
 
    

JARHEAD AND DEMOCRACY

July 28, 2006

Watched a film–no not Superman Returns but something close to it (if trying to blow Iraq’s brains out is Supermanly)–Jarhead. Yes, a witty and magic realistic film on the Gulf War. We are not quite sure if the U.S. Marine Corps will simply say ‘hu haaa!’ to this and dismiss it as just another artsy anti-war flick. Watch it and tell it to the Marines.

Wanna join an essay contest? Here’s your chance. It is sponsored by the Ateneo Human Rights Center in partnership with Friedrich Naumann Foundation. Thesis question is: Does the universality of human rights require a particular type of democracy?

If you have an answer to this then by all means you are FREE to join.

SONA AND FEDERALISM

July 24, 2006

We watched GMA’s SONA. She was most applauded when she uttered something about empowering the regions and decentralization. This is not surprising because while Filipino life seems to revolve around Metro-Manila, majority of Filipinos are not from Manila.

Federalism will favor regional writers and cultural workers. For one, there would be changes in our language policy in the academe. Perhaps there will be government offices working for and doing research on the various Philippine languages (with much funding). This will empower the regions not only culturally but economically. Decentralization will also more or less make the relationship between government and the people more intimate.

However, this (Cha-Cha) will also favor GMA. And need I explain? Also political dynasties in the provinces will only grow stronger.

We got info from Laurel Peñaranda of Peninsulares Library Cafe that Bikol arts group CEBIKA will have an art exhibit aptly called Monsoon. It will open on July 29, 7PM. Be there.

Also, one of our works got published in Vol XLV Issue 1 July 2006 of The Pillars:

TATSIAN
Ni Jose Jason L. Chancoco
“Uy, tatsian kita!” Inangat ni Ongaw sira Otep saka Utoy.

“Ay, yangna, nguwan diri na ika mingawat. Uda na madyik iton na pambato mo, Domingo nguwan, diri ika nagsisimba saka sige pa ito muda mo.” Simbag ni Utoy. Isi niyang medyo matinik ading si Ongaw alagad inisip niyang uda man maraut kun iintrimisun niya di sa gatikut.

“Masimut! Ika ngani situn pirming naglulusi, haha!” Nang-uuyam man na balus ni Ongaw.

“Oke oke, tama na kamo ta puunan ta na.” Pinapakaray ni Otep su mga taya. Sa tatsian ana mga nagngangayamun nagbubutang sa mga bariya na pare-pareho ana kantidad. Nguwan, tigpi-Piso sira. Sa gilid sana sira sa agiyan migngayamun ta kadakul na mga awtong naglalabus.

“Uy, guy, nabayad ninyo su mga agta subagu? Nagbarabaan na naman galin sadtu bukid Asog, naka-isputing!” Istorya ni Ongaw habang pigkikiskis sa kamut su gagamitun na pambato.

“Talagang nag-iiyan sira sadi centro pag arug kading alduw. Sabi ngani ni papa, ku buway pa su sinehan na Allan sagkud Jack, nagsisine sira kun Christmas. O, tira na Ongaw!” Rugang pa ni Utoy. 

“Mga baluga unu? Sabi nagkakaun kunu yan sira sa Opon saka inilulubung ana mga guraan nira sa bitnga kana pinagbangang poon sa kawuy. Diri man pati namamarung! Palugi ki Filgon, hahaha!”  Istorya pa ni Ongaw habang pinupunggit su mga bariya na nasa bitnga ku pigkurit na bilog sa semento. Biniliwan niya su pambato. Saka bagana baga agku di birtud sa puso sa batag, nasugat su mga bariyang nakaatado, nakaluwas ngamin sadtu kurit.

“Yehey! Uda na kanaku migdaug, hasler talaga ko!” Orag-orag ni Ongaw habang nagkukuyung-kuyung sira Otep saka Utoy.

Sadtu sana arani, agku nagpundung Honda CRV. Nagluwas su usad na Amerikano saka pigkukuwan sa video su tulong igin na nasa kabitngaan sa pagngangayamun. Nagsirang sadtu bintana ku awto su usad na kayumangging babayi saka nag-unga: “Hon, why are you taking footages of them?”

Nagsimbag su Amerikano: How exotic!”

–27 Pebrero 2006

   Iriga City

Naga City–Bicolandia’s club scene was invaded by OragonRepublic.Com on Wednesday, July 19. Expecting the usual rounds of bands and beverage, Lolo’s Bar denizens were met by poets reeking with tigsik and rawitdawit.

Organized by Webmasters Fer and Shiela Basbas, and Forum Moderator Jose Jason L. Chancoco, the event was meant to revive the tradition of tigsikan and performance poetry in Bicol’s club culture. Present were some of the prominent voices in Bikol literature such as Francisco Peñones, Kristian Cordero, Jun Pesimo, Estelito Jacob, Marissa Casillan, Dennis Gonzaga, Rizaldy Manrique and “Tigsik Queen” Aida Cirujales. Jan Rev Davila of Ateneo de Naga’s The Pillars also served as referee for the Bikol Balagtasan. Also around were writers Joy Bagasala and Ramon Olaño, the DJs of Mom’s Radio 95.9 FM and the staff of ABS-CBN’s ‘Bikol Espesyal Oragon Na!’ TV program. The event will be featured on the program’s July 29 episode.

Other supporters were Andy and Ningning Belmonte of Lolo’s Music Bar and Restaurant, Mike and Grace of DWNX, and Shiela Salazar and Amy Villafuerte of ABS-CBN Naga.

The OragonRepublic Writers’ Night is primarily an open-mic event and welcomes walk-in participants. For more information (future schedule and logistics) please write fbb@oragonrepublic.com, smb@oragonrepublic.com or tarusan22@yahoo.com. You may also log on to http://www.oragonrepublic.com/

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Fer Basbas giving a welcome address

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Hagbayon the Host

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It was also our despedida for Ford Scholar Frank Peñones

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Kristian Cordero

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Which is better, a slim or a fat wife? Aida Cirujales and Esting Jacob try to resolve it in a Jan Rev Davila refereed Bikol Balagtasan

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Jun Pesimo

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Issa Casillan

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The ABS-CBN Bikol Espesyal Team

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Dennis Gonzaga

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Performance Art: Frank Peñones lets the newspaper speak for itself
 

It has been raining lately here in Naga City, prolonging our stay in our beds and making our dreams wet and interesting. We remember our years in Imus, Cavite when heavy rains served as ‘matatamis na rehas ng ulan’. It was a stormy night when coming from a book launch in UP-Diliman, we took a jeep from Baclaran to Imus. A fellow passenger was carrying an evening edition of a tabloid that said: “Abu Sabaya, Dedo!”

Now here in Bicol we hear of a series of robberies and thefts. Signs of the times, as Carlo Arejola would say. We can only agree. Yes, it tells us of the current political climate–with an upcoming elections and unstable administration.

But on a happier note, we hear of book launchings.

Venerable poet Cirilo F. Bautista is coming up with a new book of poetry. It will be launched on July 29, 10am at the Gaerlan Conservatory right there in De La Salle University-Taft. Everybody is welcome to attend. Also here in Bicol, Frank Peñones will release his own title next month. This is something to look forward to since there’s a new publishing firm in town–Agnus Press.

Also we got a copy of Burak 171-175 from Gode Calleja in Canada. Again, one of our Bikol-Naga poems is printed there. Here’s the poem:
SAKYADA

Mapula an saldang
duman sa may saran:

Ining mga bayong
natadyok na tarom

sa piad kan duros
na mayo nang libog.

Napara an saldang
duman sa may saran:

Gabos nag-aaso
pati tindahan ko.

We finalized the OragonRep Writers’ Night slated on Wednesday, July 19, 6:30PM at Lolo’s Bar in Avenue Square, Magsaysay Ave.

We did send invites to some people but everybody is welcome. Just drop by the place and enjoy a night of poetry and music with us. There will be an open-mic so walk-in performers are advised to bring their poems.

We can expect Francisco Peñones, Kristian Cordero, Ben Escoto, Jason Chancoco, Noel Dorente, Jo Bisuña, Carlo Arejola, Joy Bagasala, Jun Pesimo, Rizaldy Manrique and Issa Casillan to be around come Wednesday night. The other Bikol writers are still working on their schedules.

This will also be our despedida for Frank Peñones who will be ‘leaving on a jetplane’ soon for his Ford Foundation scholarship in the US.

See you on Wednesday!

By the way, we got a copy of Burak 166-170 from G.B. Calleja in Canada. One of our Bikol-Naga poems is published there. Here’s the poem:

SA PARASURAT NA INAPON SA SALOG

Nagpipirikpitik an mga isura,
Dai masalmingan an tubig ta pasa.
Kulkol pa kan diklom asin man kan basa
An naghalong dugo, lugad, pagal, tungka.

Pinaanod na lang kan lawas an tingog.
Pamibi kan kalag dai magin bahog.
Nagpipirikpitik an mga isura,
Dai masalmingan an tubig ta pasa.

An pinakahuring pagrarawitdawit,
Naglalataw-lataw sa lumhok kan tubig.
Paluway-luway lang, nasakat sa ngabil,
Asin sinusurat sa sulog kan hangin.
Dai masalmingan an tubig ta pasa.

IN TRIBUNE YESTERDAY

July 12, 2006

We attended a book launch today by Fr Wilmer Tria right there at the Madrigal Foundation. He came up with a book on Bikol philosophy entitled “Ako Asin an Kapwa Ko: Pilosopiya nin Tawo” published by the Ateneo de Naga University Press. The launch was well-attended by members of the clergy, some public servants, school heads, students and writers.

Rey Hernandez gave a ‘critique’ of the book. He later concluded that at the most, the book will make philosophy more intimate to the Bikol learner but still, the subjects remains to be something to be conquered.

Kristian Cordero and Frank Peñones gave poetry performances.

We have not read the book but basing from Fr, Tria’s short lecture, the book used Bikol elements in order to establish Bikol philosophy. Primarily, his main thrust was on the Bikol language–the use of ‘yaon’. ‘boot’ and ‘urag’ in philosophy. These elements were utilized in support Fr. Tria’s phenomenological schema.

What is Bikol philosophy and who are the Bikol philosophers? The books tries to answer these questions using elements in the Bikol language that could articulate Bikol thought.

We are not sure if the book represented indigenous thinking by referring to Bikol oral traditions such as the osipon and the ariwaga. Methinks that the epitome of the Bikol philosopher can be found among these literary traditions.

Also our article on the 3rd Juliana Arejola-Fajardo Workshop for Bikol Writing appears in yesterday’s issue (July 12) of The Daily Tribune. We would like to thank Ver Rivas, a poet-friend, for sending us an SMS about the publication.

Later together with Fer and Shiela Basbas we went to Lolo’s Bar in Avenue Square right there in Magsaysay. We had dinner courtesy of Roy and Monette Kurian. We found the new Lolo’s Bar as more conducive to diners rather than drinkers. But we did enjoy a some beer with the group. We chatted with Roy and gathered insights from him regarding the state of political affairs in the country. It’s good to listen to a foreigner when it comes to these matters.
 

ALAY TALINGHAGA

July 10, 2006

Nakagugulat kung minsan kapag nakakatanggap tayo ng tulang alay sa atin. Bilang manunulat, mas nakasanayan kong ako ang nag-aalay ng talinghaga sa ibang tao. Maraming dahilan kung bakit naglalaan ng panahon ang isang makata para tulaan ang ibang tao. Kadalasan ang dahilan ay pag-ibig–romantiko man o platonic. Minsan naman ay ni hindi pa nakakatagpo ng makata nang personal ang taong tinutulaan. Maaaring isang artista o pulitiko. Maaaring paboritong makata. Bilang isang manunulat nakagugulat nang matagpuan ang iyong sariling tinutulaan ang ibang tao, ngunit mas nakagugulat kung ikaw na mismo ang tinutulaan ng ibang makata.

Taong 2002 nang magkapanagpo kami nitong si Sonny Villafania sa Maynila. Simula noon ay naging magkapanalig na kami sa panulat sa pamamagitan ng Dalityapi Unpoemed, isang popular na elektrikal na publikasyon ng mga tula sa Ingles at iba’t ibang wika sa Pilipinas. Nagkaroon pa nga ng regular o ‘in-house poets’ ang Makata at bawat buwan ay nakapaglalabas kami ng bagong isyu laman ang mga tula ng mga kilala at bagong makata.

Subalit bukas pa rin sa amin ang ideya ng kritisismo. Kaya nga hanggang ngayon ay nagpapadala pa rin sa akin ng mga tula ang ilang kaibigan para bigyan ng kaukulang paggalang at pagpuna. Sa kritisimo kasi, ang pagbibigay ng malalim at mayamang pagpuna ay ang pinakamataas na antas ng paggalang sa isang akda

Kaya lamang ang tulang pinadala sa atin ni Sonny ay atin iniaalay. Sabi pa ni Sonny: “Kung hindi tula, wasakin at kung hindi wasak, tulain!”

Heto ang tula:

Ulat sa Sugat
(kay Jose Jason L. Chancoco)

may halo
ng alat
ng luha
ang tula
ng utal
na tala

at tagos
sa puso:
opus ng
makatang
katana
ang mata.

may galos
ang logos.

Naalala ko agad ang ‘Ulat Mula sa Bulkan’ at ‘Sugat ng Salita’ ni Cirilo F. Butista dahil sa pamagat.

At may tugmaang tumbalik pa sa unang saknong: halo, luha, tala, alat, utal, tula.

At naging internal nga lamang ang tugmaang tumbalik sa ikalawang saknong: puso, opus, makata, katana, mata.

At naging tudlikan naman sa huling saknong: galos, logos.

Siyempre mas mainam kung konsistent ang tugmaan.

Hindi na natin bibigyang puna ang nilalaman ng tula dahil nga sa atin ito inialay. Ang masasaabi ko lamang ay: Dios Mabalos Sonny!

ABSENTIA

July 9, 2006

An old book on world literature defined poetry with regard to the persona and the one being addressed to as the ‘absent lover’. We are also a member of an e-group called Guniguni: The Absent Muse where we served as editor of their very first literary folio. What is it about absence that makes it so poetic? Is it like silence (like the old riddle) that disappears once you call it?

We would consider that poetry is in the middle of departure and arrival. It is transcendentally transitory. Like theism and prayer–the wounding of the word. We pray and lend our voice to the Lord. We do poetics and do violence to linguistic pragmatism. We rebel not only against the binary of silence and voice–we create a clearing where they are one.

We are in love and at a loss for words. The language of love is therefore not prose?–to assent is to be sweeping. The language of love is not human language, we only lend ourselves to it, be it through our actions or our voice. In the same way that we poeticize, theologize or idealize even. In the same way that we pray–we love.   

FNF WORKSHOP PHOTOS

July 8, 2006

How surreal it seems that just this morning we were at ultra-modern Makati. The FNF Blogging and Podcasting Workshop finished off well. We were given certificates right after we were asked to evaluate the workshop design and all other pertinent things about the workshop.This blogger never before attended a fellowship with the same level of generosity. The food and accommodations were great. Travel allowance was more than enough. And the equipments and lecturers were exemplary. It is also of note that the participants were of diverse backgrounds although most came from the Liberal family.We also did not miss to meet some friends in the area. That is why we were saying that Makati is so surreal for us, because as Mimi Lacambra remarked, it is an ‘illusion’. And it seems that in this City, one will never feel that ‘Naghihirap ang Pilipinas’, as Mimi said. We can only agree with her. The standard living of the city is of the high-end. Coming from the NAIA, we took an expensive taxi to Makati. While coming from Naga Airport going to our Sta Cruz apartment, we only took a pedicab and a mini-bus.We sorted out the stuffs in our baggage and found a keepsake from the Foundation. It’s a CD containing our pictures, lectures, podcasts and softwares. Here are some of the photos: dsc04154.JPG Major problems in the Philippine political context that we had to do a podcast on

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Dr. Ronald Meinardus, FNF resident representative in the Philippines

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Mr. Manolo Quezon giving a lecture on blogging as political tool

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Participants Mr. M. Husni Thamrin of Indonesia and Ms. Sung-eun Lim of Korea

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Hagbayon from Japan, hehe dsc03992.JPG

Mr. Abe Olandres lecturing on the technicalities of blogging

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Mr. Angelo Racoma sharing his expertise on podcasting dsc04205.JPG

Hands-on