December 21, 2007

“Onward you move regardless of plans, you my friend are a roadworthy man.”—Wolfgang, ‘Roadworthy Man’

Now let us recapitulate some of the important events that I got involved in this year.

I helped in my father’s candidacy as a Baranggay Kagawad. Though it made me see the real score behind this political exercise, I still believe that we can still do better and improve grassroots legislation for national progress.

As writers, we are also legislators. Thus on July 1, 2007, Kabulig-Bikol ratified its Constitution and By-Laws. Though I see that there are still provisions that require some work, as it is, the current By-Laws can already help the organization function with some degree of formality. This country is run by law and not by men, and the same goes for any organization.

I served as Election Officer during Kabulig-Bikol’s selection of the new NCCA-National Committee on Literary Arts Representative. As part of the process, we interrogated the candidates with regard their plans and programs. And then we proceeded to the electoral process via secret balloting. The margin was so close, and to complicate matters, one of the members took an early leave and so we needed to contact him and know his vote. Not wanting a delay in the process, Estelito B. Jacob conceded to Carlos A. Arejola.

We processed the nomination and sent it to the then Head of the NCLA, Lito Zulueta. But later on, we had to resend the nomination because the NCCA, after revising its IRR made some changes in the nomination requirements. They now required a joint nomination (we tapped DIBA, Inc.) and a duly-accomplished application form. As Election Officer and likewise Kabulig-Bikol’s PR Officer, I provided Carlos Arejola with updates with regard the changes in the requirements. We sent the documents again, and this time, not anymore to Lito Zulueta but to the Project Management Division (as indicated) and Carlos Arejola’s application was approved.

Kabulig-Bikol also helped in raising some funds to partially shoulder Carlos’ transportation expenses for the NCLA elections held in Cebu City last December 10. And he is now officially the Representative for Southern Luzon. Though he is expected to represent Bikol writers he will cover as far as the Quezon Province in the NCLA as it tries to deliberate on and execute programs that would revitalize the literary arts scene in the region.

Meanwhile, another group that is determined to push for advocacies with regard Bicol culture and history was formed during the year. Tentatively named Bonyog-Bikolnon it has Fr. Wilmer Tria, Fr. Philip Bersabe, Estelito B. Jacob, Fabiana A. Arejola, Jose Fernando Obias, D.C. Nathan A. Sergio, Ruben P. Barrameda, Ramon Olaño Jr., Jose V. Barrameda Jr., Fr. Manny Zagaoa, Kristian Cordero and Jose Jason L. Chancoco as Incorporators. The group, during its December 9, 2007 meeting at the Madrigal Building agreed to place Jose Obias, Fabiana A. Arejola and Jose Jason L. Chancoco as Interim Chairman, Treasurer and Secretary respectively. The group is now processing its registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Now this blogger believes that for Bikol literature to prosper, Bikol writers ought to think not only of their respective careers and go down from their Ivory Tower and meet up with other people also interested in the art specially the beginners. That is why my monthly Palihan continues. And I see myself doing more of these literary discussions this coming year.

As for the publications, we still got lucky. Here’s some of my published works this year:

  • Homelife: “Isang Gabing Ganito” (October Issue) and “Elehiya” (November Issue)
  • All with Tagalog translations—“Tigsik Lubid”, “Siklo-Real” and “Siklo Solar” in Ani 33: 20th Anniversary Issue (Nature and Environment) edited by Mr. Herminio S. Beltran, Jr
  • Along with poet Santiago Villafania, I indulged in a literary discussion with master poet Cirilo F. Bautista. And the result of this fruitful discourse was published in Bautista’s Philippine Panorama August 19, 2007 article entitled “Of Writers and Readers”
  • Bikol Reporter: March 18-24, 2007 issue—“Pasakalye ki Kaye 1” and November 25-Dec 1, 2007 issue—“Opera”
  • “Sa Parasurat na Inapon sa Salog”, “Sakyada”, “Sa Berde kan Marahan” and “Pasakalye Ki Kaye 1” in Burak nguna bago bunga: Ika-apat na tipon nin mga luwas kan Burak, an Dahon Parawitdawit. Pinakaray ni G.B. Calleja
  • March 2007 Issue of The Pillars—reprint of “The Chanters of Baao”
  • “The Social Dimension of Textual Interrogation in the Classroom” in The Arabesques Print Review, a journal based in South Africa.
  • “Bakwet” in Latay sa Isipan: Mga Bagong Tulang Filipino (UST Press) edited by Dr. Cirilo F. Bautista and Allan Popa. Launched on August 30, 2007 at the World Trade Center.
  • “Nekromansa” in Sawi: Funny Essays, Stories and Poems on All Kinds of Heartbreaks (Milflores Publishing)

I am still the Bikol and Tagalog editor of Dalityapi Unpoemed’s Makata. It still receives contributions from all over the world. Still, it is a portal of Philippine if not Southeast Asian literary arts.

While I also served as judge for the 2007 Premio Tomas Arejola para sa Literaturang Bikolnon, this blogger is also happy to report the three literary distinctions I got this year:

  • Talaang Ginto: Gawad Surian sa Tula, Gantimpalang Collantes 2007 (Hon. Mention)
  • Gawad “Soc” Rodrigo 2007 (From the Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino and National Commission for Culture and the Arts)
  • Home Life Magazine Poetry Contest 2007 (1st Prize, Filipino Category)

I also participated in these literary activities:

  • Served as host during the OragonRepublic Writer’s Night at Lolo’s Bar on July 19, 2007
  • Read poems during the Mundag Literary Awards at Ateneo de Naga University on February 17, 2007
  • Reactor to Dr. Cyril Conde’s lecture on February 15, 2007 at Ateneo de Naga University entitled “The Archive of Kadunong: Exploring the Oral Narrative Literature of the Bikol Region in the Philippines”. I talked about oral tradition and Bikol printed poetry.
  • Forum Member or Kinatawan during CHED and KWF’s “Konsultasyon-Balikatan sa Ortograpiyang Filipino” held at DepEd-RELC, Legaspi City on July 10, 2007
  • Along with other Bikol writers, I supported Dr. Cirilo F. Bautista’s nomination to the Order of National Artist 2009
  • Launched the Hagbayon Podcast Channel on June 2, 2007 at http://www.gcast.com/u/hagbayon. And I think it’s the first of its kind in the country.

And of course, my thanks to ABS-CBN reporter Ms. Rizza Mostar and cameraman Christopher Hermoso for featuring this writer for the ‘Bicolano: Angat Ka!’ segment of TV Patrol Bicol on December 7, 2007.

As always, this is for God, for Bicol and the people I love. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to All!


10 Responses to “HAGBAYON’S 2007 YEAR-END REPORT”

  1. Wow, you’ve really been busy. All power to you!

    I really like the picture at the top of this post. Where was it taken?

  2. hagbayon said



    By the way, I took the picture at the Basilica Shrine in Naga City. It was about 5:30pm I think. The Shrine houses the Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia. If you are in the country, you might want to come for a visit. We celebrate her feast day every September 18.

    Happy new year! More power to you too!

  3. I’ve never been to Naga. I’d really like to visit. Hey, are there bookstores that might be interested in having me read, if I visit Naga ????

    What are the good restaurants there???

  4. hagbayon said


    Naga City is the place to be if you are looking for a great dining experience. Nagueños love to eat out. Of course you must try ‘Kinalas’ or nilantang pili and other native foods.

    We don’t have much bookstores here in Naga just yet (except the National Bookstore branch in Legaspi). Perhaps some schools would want to have a writer as a visitor, guest lecturer or reader. We also schedule OragonRepublic Writer’s Night at Lolo’s Bar–we can have you as guest there.


  5. I would love to visit Naga next time I’m in the Philippines, to eat and also to give a reading if there are any schools interested.

    Hey, how long does it take to drive there from Manila?

  6. hagbayon said


    When do you plan to visit the country?

    A drive from Manila to Naga would take about 8 hours. By air, it would take 40 minutes.

    Yes, it would be great to have you here for a lecture or public reading.


  7. Plan to visit this year, probably September/ October?

    I think you should apply to Kundiman. Just to see what happens.

  8. hagbayon said


    September 18 would be great because it’s Naga City’s fiesta (for Our Lady of Peñafrancia). But then, there would be no classes. But I think you can meet up with Bicol-based writers. And if ever we can schedule a writer’s night at Lolo’s Bar, maybe you could be our guest writer. That would be great!

    Yes, Kundiman seems cool.


  9. OK, I’m excited. Sept. 18, huh? I’ll aim for that. I’ve always wanted to see Our Lady of Peñafrancia 🙂 And of course it would be GREAT to meet up with you and other writers!

  10. hagbayon said

    Ok Marianne, I will expect you. Thanks!

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