Sunday, February 2, 2014

OUR LADY OF CANDLES



OUR LADY OF CANDLES*

It is what we have this candle for. To light
And brighten what we ought to, need to---
Life being all too brief---that through this,
We can accept this fiercely warm yet gentle
place we have been given, noblesse oblige,
To enjoy, to love, to offer for the wounds
And the pain of this lonely struggle, a life
We know we must give back when we end
The journey to get back to our beginning
To know it again and again as the still point
Of a dazzling light of Lights beyond this hole,
A sharp shining scimitar to slay an imitation
Of living where one strives only for the wind,
A quiet dragon breathing nothing but cold fire.

--- ALBERT B. CASUGA

*Nuestra Senora de Candelaria

Thursday, January 23, 2014


HER QUIET REPRIMAND

 

“But what have I, but what have I, my friend,/ To give you, what can you receive from me?/ Only the friendship and the sympathy/ Of one about to reach her journey’s end.”

---T. S. Eliot, “Portrait of a Lady”

 

How often does she get up nights

looking for the leftover dried fish?

She wakes up hungry these days,

roused by carousing cats, mating

with puling sounds she snickers

about when her knees do not hurt.

 

Dawn cracks by the time she rests

her face on the laced tabled cloth

her ilustrado* family had given

her as a wedding gift, embroidered

by her abuela: the way to a man’s

heart is through his stomach.

 

Or some such bromide she must

have lived by, however often she

promised to leave the philanderer

on her now cold bed till he freezes

over, but he went on to die ahead

in a seedy motel locked ardently

in the armpit of a snoring querida.

 

With grand aplomb, she buried him

decently, and her neighbours said:

Like a lady, she stood by her man.

 

She wakes up nights now looking

for a misplaced cellphone, its use

scarcely learned, no, not mastered,

but handy anyway when she calls

her next-of-kin across-god-knows

what-oceans asking for his where

abouts,he is not home yet’, and she

feels like eating some hot dimsum

from that dark Ka-Yang panciteria

where families gather on Sundays.

 

---Albert B. Casuga

 

*ilustrado -- well-educated

 


Sunday, January 19, 2014

BEACH SHADOWS AT SUNDOWN: A FUGUE



BEACH SHADOWS AT SUNDOWN: A FUGUE
 

(For all my Wee Ones* wherever they are or will be.)

 
1. Here is There

 
Here is where there is:
do you hear the murmur
of the seawaves laving this shore?

It is the whispered caress of a Mother
finding her little ones romping
among the sundown shadows.

Where the flushed horizon
meets the sea, a Father’s face
gleams ruddy with laughter’s heat
still etched on His crinkled brow.


The little shadows taunt the sea
to reach their limbs. Gleeful,
when doused at last, their now

surprised screams are drowned
by the whimper of ebbtide waves
that has turned to a gentle laughter.


2.  His Faith

O, that this cacophony of sounds
becomes the noise of a lifetime
this old heart (from all distances)
could hearken to, leap up to---,
velvety notes of a joie de vivre
this place was built for, made of,
has grown by, and remembered by.


Is this not, after all, the paradise

he thought was lost in time past
now visited upon his dotage
when he still hankers for some joy,
a little life left, while there is time?


---ALBERT B. CASUGA

*Julian Ashley +, Diana Patricia, Daniel Anthony, Matthew Francis, Taylor Lauren, Megan Sarah, Michael Albert, Sidney Alexis, Chloe Dominique, Louis Martin, and Marie Clementine.

 

Ambit's Gambit (Albert B. Casuga Literary Blog): BEACH SHADOWS AT SUNDOWN: A FUGUE

Ambit's Gambit (Albert B. Casuga Literary Blog): BEACH SHADOWS AT SUNDOWN: A FUGUE

Monday, July 22, 2013

A RIVER'S RUSH: COMING FULL CIRCLE



A RIVER'S RUSH: COMING FULL CIRCLE

---On a cruise along Lachine, Quebec.

Today’s Journal Note for a Play: @ She: “Had I known then, what I know now, that we were too young, and it was just our brimming desire that bound us… @ He: “But has desire left while we were not looking? In the twilight of our years, I set you free. Our harbour is, after all, not named Regret…and the Streetcar it was on was not even named Desire…” @ Both: After a quick giggle, they fell silent. 07-22-13

 
The River as mother to the sea entraps us
into this womblike feeling of ease.
She draws us to this discovery of need,
a foregone joy, our quiet helplessness.
We are the river that has run its course
into an engulfment of this restless sea.


How far have we gone away from Nara?
How long have we silently gone astray?
Does the river current come full circle
from the breaking waves of this sea?
Do we meet each other, dreamlike,
in the endless stream of all Lachines?

The river runs full circle, and yet and yet,
we dread we have not even, halfway, met.
When will my currents flow into your rocks,
you distant sea, you entrapment of need?
When do we come back as rivulets
in some warm, some hidden rock spring?

Will we even find an engulfment of ease?
When will the sea create the river?
When will the river create the sea?
Where they meet in the trickle of a stone
garden, who laves the rolling river stones?
Who will lap the greenwood’s shores?

This River’s rush is finally our question:
Did love leave while we were not looking?

---ALBERT B. CASUGA
Mississauga, On. 07-22-13