HONORING THE NATIONAL HEROES


Today is the commemoration of National Heroes Day in the Philippines. I am reproducing my poem published by Bulatlat to honor Andres Bonifacio, Macliing Dulag, Marcelo del Pilar and other Filipinos -many unsung- who died for our freedom.


ON NATIONAL HEROES DAY

On this day, we remember the women and men
All too aware that death was their destiny certain
When in darkness and doom they scattered flames
A big number without faces, many without names
No pit of gloom too deep, no wall of might too high
Firm resolve knew no barrier- liberty was so nigh
Their blood was shed on the land cast in despair
They fell listening to small wings flapping in the air

It mattered not if the future would concede the cost
To brighten its direction, even their dreams were lost
They tore down all stones in the castle of oppression
Not one dream survived, none but their fiery vision
Of posterity marching outside the dungeons, so free
From the wickedness of brute power and tyranny
What, alone, counted –when our time would come
We would storm power chambers to rescue freedom

On this day, we remember their supreme sacrifice
The drops of their blood that for liberty was the price
There is nothing of meaning in those ceremonies
None in the accolades, none in the lavish wreaths
None in the costly fireworks, none in the cavalcades
We insult their martyrdom, we blaspheme their deaths
While we leisurely fold our arms as a tyrant reigns
While we snore as our freedom is shackled in chains

Truth sets us free, but we live in an ambience of lies
Evil is before us, but we are blind with open eyes
Truth is hoarded in our thoughts, whispered at night
Our world is plunged in darkness, desperate for light
The streets are now aimless, their voice stifled by fear
Our conscience murmurs low; we pretend not to hear
We are unworthy legatees of the heroes' sacrifice
Freedom is trampled down by the force of cowardice

Our mastered silence is our acquiescence to tyranny
Big onus we must accept for the requiem for liberty
But redemption is never late; from slumber we arise
With the valor of ghosts, we hoist truth, conquer lies
Like a mother guards her child, let us protect freedom
Our power as one nation honors the heroes' martyrdom
Not a moment we can waste; let truth precede our way
Until freedom returns with the unfussy light of day


Post a Comment