Love is not enough

29 01 2015

in thanks to my cousin, Carmel Phillips

What does it mean when he says he loves you
but does not trust himself not to hurt you?

I never thought I could go to her with this question
but she gave me the best answer anyone could.

Last night, in your drunken state of mind
you held me tightly, barely awake

Answering questions I don’t remember asking.
The next morning you told me that I can’t hold

A drunk to his words. Her answer was simple.
Her answer was ‘Love is not enough’

It is not an isolated entity. It is a lame word
the false pillar for lazy people to

Lean against in the bad times because
they do not want to be alone at night.

He called it love, but it is not a magic word
and with the wave of a wand will everything

Be perfect and magical and wonderful.
There is no abracadabra

It is four letters. It is the most overused word
in the world, regardless of language; love

Ti amo, cinta, laska, te ahora, pag-ibig
we’ve heard it all before.

Hey sooner we realise, we cover ourselves with lies
well underneath we’re not so tough, oh love it’s not enough

Love comes with values you share, with
goals you should work towards, with

Beliefs you are in agreement with,
His actions have to match the content

Of his speech.  So when he said that
I couldn’t hold a drunk to his words

What he really meant was that
I shouldn’t hold him accountable

for what he had said to me
the night before.

That he loved me, but did not trust himself
not to hurt me. It was his escape route.

So she is right.
Any old fool could fall in love.

But a wise man knows that
respect, commitment, faith and dignity

Are the real supporting pillars to the
heart-shaped coliseum we build for ourselves.



28 01 2015

It is only here
at the end of the world

where we will drink
to renew the bond made

in confined black rooms;
now at edges of large water bodies,

we mock the universe
and its possibilities but

soon we sail off
to our own corners;

tonight will keep
the same blood in our veins.


How to greet death

28 01 2015

Give Death your hand
Let him lift you to your feet
Wrap his arm around your waist
And take your breath away.

Chain yourself with tubes
attached to machines
that have more life than you
and the plug permanently fixed to the socket;
Death will still have the stronger grip.



28 01 2015

In loving memory of Albert Edmund Phillips
For my cousins. 

May be it’s because
we told him
that he is the only one
that will carry
the family name.

That’s why he
walks big
talks big
acts big
for the runt of the family.

May be it’s because
the other son
takes his father’s name,
the last one
on that side too.

That’s why he
his marriage proposal.

May be it’s because
the other nine were successful
taking feminism in one hand
and tossing it aside,
knowing we were born equal.

That’s why we
our last name.

May be it’s because
there is no way
we will let this
2 syllable,
8 letter honour

That’s why we
with all our souls

every time there is eleven at the table.

Story Slam

18 01 2015

Dear World,

So I went down for the first time to Story Slam at Artistry last night and I heard good things about it and I wanted to check it out. Really didn’t know what to expect from it.

After hearing people share their stories, it was almost magical. The theme was ‘bending the rules’ and some of the stories were about ‘yeah! screw the rules’ and inspiring in all the right ways. And the whole room and I went ‘YEAH! REBELLION! REVOLUTION!’ and all that. Like Jessica who ran to Thailand to teach English and did not tell her mother until three weeks after. Or another woman who found love on crag’s list and is now married to that man. And there were some stories that had quiet resolutions. Sad resolutions. Ones where you have to face with the consequences, with no happy endings. Like a friend of mine shared the saddest love story and when I heard it, I saw it play on the stage in my head; and I knew it was a story worth listening to because it was true.

Listening to every one of those stories, it was some sort of fairy tale. Each in its own one. It was as if I was sitting in a store where adults are telling urban and adult fairy tales, where happy endings happen in the most unconventional of ways, and new experiences are uplifting and the sad stories had their own magic that transcended on them. I know I’m using the word ‘magic’ a lot but I really am still in awe of the effect. And as much as I want to share the stories, retelling them might make me lose their appeal.

I think sometimes the best way to experience something, is to experience it. Go down to Artistry next month on Valentine’s day for more great stories.

Til then,

Where is the boyfriend?

17 01 2015

Judgement Day Can Wait ( Poetry Nights @ Cus)