Friday, May 27

Liyab

The Rain’s Soliloquy

The Rain’s Soliloquy

Literary, Liyab
by ABIGAIL M. ADRIATICO My presence is known to all, long before I arrive. Each step I take leads me further away.   I like to think that they know I will come on days they least expect me to.   Yet, I could already see their scowls from a distance— expressions I am no stranger to for I am never welcome here. Their stares are cold and bitter,  wanting nothing more  than for me to leave them alone.    Should I take my rest right where they are, hoping to serve a moment of solace after their tiring days, they all come running away.   I reach for their shoulders  but my touch is too cold for them to bear. So I am cast aside, hitting the asphalt ever so quick— the soles of their shoes stepping over my
My Embrace

My Embrace

Literary, Liyab
By CZERIZHA KAIZEL S. ADZUARA I remember the day I held you close underneath the mahogany trees in the park. I was grateful for the shade, for I could let go of the umbrella and finally embrace you with both of my arms. Several people were strolling. Some were with their friends, while others were with their parents. And there we were—cherishing each moment like we had the world for us and only the two of us. All of a sudden, you began to weep and squirm away from my grasp. I tried to calm you down with a lullaby, but you nagged and pointed at the slide. You always preferred to try new things over my song. I placed you gently at the crest of the slide. The beams of afternoon light illuminated you, and you were finally at ease.  I let you go and gave you a glimpse of free
Sampung Araw

Sampung Araw

Literary, Liyab
Bilang ang mga araw paatras.  Sampu menos isa tuwing unang sigaw ng magtataho  o ng konduktor ng dyip sa Maynila; tuwing bagong gising ang magsasaka o ang mangingisda sa probinsya.   Marahil binibilang dahil sabik. Maaari ring may kirot sa dibdib, pumipihit ang tiyang parang kinakabag at mapipigil ng isang saglit ang hininga  kapag naalala—malapit na. Ano kaya ang bukas na dala ng balota? Oras ang makapagdidikta.   Kaya nag-aabang.  Isinalalay sa dalawang kamay ng relo ang pangyayaring hindi kailanman maikukulong ng orasan.  Pagdating ng araw,  bubuksan ang tarangkahan na hangganan  ng ngayon mula sa noon at kinabukasan at sa parehong direksyon  ay aagos ang alinman:  kalamidad o kaginhawaan. Dadapo
A Burden to Carry

A Burden to Carry

Literary, Liyab
By ABIGAIL M. ADRIATICO   The setting sun painted the sky with a deep orange hue as Edgar walked towards the market again. He had been carrying crates filled with assorted perishable goods. Tired from work, his bones screamed for a break, yet his mind paid little attention.  Wiping the sweat from his brow, he set the crate of vegetables down in Aling Edna’s stall. He paused to stretch his aching back, but the old lady looked at him with a scowl, yelling: “May isa pa akong sako kina Martha. Dalian mo at nagmamadali sila.” Without a word, he nodded before heading back to the jeepney where a few men stood idly. One of them handed him a sack full of potatoes—far heavier than those he had been carrying all day. He struggled to hoist it on his back, but no one noticed. After
Little Flower

Little Flower

Literary, Liyab
By FATIMA B. BADURIA She held the can’s handle firmly. Her eyes were fixated on the water trickling down the flower petals. Her knuckles turned pale as her nails dug in her palm.  Even in the garden, she could hear them. Inside the house, her father laughed alongside the banters from the television. Her brother cursed as sounds of gunshots emerged from his game. A sudden rush of water cascaded to her foot—the pot had overflowed.  She looked at it. A few steps back and the petal’s brown edges would not have shown, nor the flower’s slight droop. “Like a little flower,” her father once told her, pinching her then round cheeks. It was usually out of admiration if people touched them. She did so now with a pang in her chest, running her ragged, chapped hands in its wilting
Focal Point

Focal Point

Literary, Liyab
By CZERIZHA KAIZEL S. ADZUARA   Whenever I am with you, I learn how to decipher the smallest things.  I like how you run your delicate fingers through your hair after every laughter, including the attractive smirk your lips make when I stare at you for too long.  I know what shades of rose you pick for your lips by heart. You prefer dusty mauve pink in your calm days and a muted red-brown when you want to conquer the world.  There are times I marvel at the thought of blending your lips’ colors with mine. I would still call it art, no matter how smudgy it gets. You tend to knot your hair into a bun when you tame the academic chaos laid before you. Your blue hair tie holds your messy locks firmly as you keep yourself whole.  I adore how your fingers gracefully s
Surreal

Surreal

Literary, Liyab
By FATIMA B. BADURIA I look away every time because I have never known twin pools before, crystal waters aglow seemingly enchanting, sending ripples in a sudden beat to my chest then to every ragged breath, oddly disconcerting when they stay too long, right before my eyes.   And not just your gaze nor the way it rests on me, there is a breath of mystery in your voice, snapping my thoughts into focus. And when you laugh, sparks and warmth coincide, bursting around us in a surreal affair.   It makes me smile every time because I have never ridden the wind before, sweeping me off the ground towards a thrilling rush and all my senses sharpen every movement  to capture these memories, knowing it would play over and over a
Click

Click

Literary, Liyab
By ABIGAIL M. ADRIATICO   She always took photos of what she liked—whether they were flowers on a bright summer day or a guy she had feelings for. You could always tell it through her smiles behind the viewfinder.  With every polaroid photo she took, she would ask for my thoughts. Her pictures always enamored me because they mirrored what she felt.  This made me wonder, what feeling would her picture convey if I was her subject?  Like most days, finding the answer terrified me. The idea of us becoming more than what we are was a gentle dream that I didn’t want to wake up from. Still, an inner voice silently whispered in my ear–I could not stay like this forever.  "Sadie, do you have something to say?" a crease formed on her forehead. Only then I realized that she
Noontime dreaming

Noontime dreaming

Literary, Liyab
By DAWN DANIELLE D. SOLANO Kevin loved watching the sun’s gradual transition from its boldest blaze of orange to its velvet tangerine hues every afternoon. He knew the perfect spot in the University where he could get a front-row view of the show. He picked a bench in front of the main building to admire the statues of two saints and the Dominican monk that framed the stretch of orange skies.  He always did this before meeting up with his best friends, Amy and Paul. The two would stroll down lover’s lane every afternoon just as much as Kevin liked his alone time. They would arrive on time, just to catch him half-awake from an afternoon nap. “Tignan mo ‘to.” He heard Amy say.  “Natutulog kung saan abutin ng antok.”  “Gising na Kevin. Gusto mo bang mahuli sa klase?” Paul t
Full Circle

Full Circle

Literary, Liyab
Red brake lights set the road ablaze. Caloy shifted in the driver’s seat, he gripped the steering wheel as the long hell of a queue burned right before him.  “Eto na naman tayo,” he heaved a sigh. He stared at his bag of purchase in the passenger’s seat: a few tablets of paracetamol, vitamins, and food. Everyone’s throat in their house had been sore, their bodies lay with fatigue.  As a firstborn and the only healthy person under their roof, Caloy regularly ran errands. This made him whine and think of his unfinished works and household chores. Involuntarily, he caressed the hanging rosary in the rearview mirror.  He touched the rosary beads one by one and pondered how this looming dread seemed so familiar. How this burden— once was lifted because of possible face-to-face clas