From Pedro to Juan

That night, that second,

when you were dying a thousand deaths

in my arms, I pulled my left hand from your waist

and lifted the bottle of San Miguel Beer on the table

and poured its remaining content all over me.

Then I, à la gremlin, multiplied into a thousand

first aiders (each duly certified) to save you

from each impending death.

And I (or we) succeeded:

By dawn, you were a young flower

blooming for the first time.




And just to be sure, in case there won’t be

a single bottle of San Miguel Beer

come the next mortal moment, yesterday

I spent all my savings for your memorial plan,

bought from Loyola Memorial Park, so you’ll be

buried someday among this country’s

showbiz celebrities, artists, heroes, etcetera.

(The only caveat: among the etcetera,

are probably crooks.)

What? You don’t want this post-mortem gift?

I’m wrong again?

You prefer the Libingan ng mga Bayani instead?!

(Well, I guess as far as sharing your final resting place

with heroes and a certified crook goes, you’re right.)




I Sent for the Clown, But…

You don’t invite me to your parties anymore.

I guess you’re sure I don’t deliver the goods, anyway.

I’m certain you remember and still reel from the failed promise

I made to hire a clown for your birthday years ago.

You never believed me when I told you that he was

on his way but suffered a flat tire, and had to back out

at the last minute. I was apologetic, for the clown and myself.


You didn’t believe that I really sent for one.

When I showed you the receipt for the down payment

from the party needs shop, you accused me

that I had it faked somewhere along Recto Avenue.

At least the other clown made it to your party:

the one who sent for the other one.





  1. Thanks for publishing my love poems, Philippines Graphic! I bought two copies of this latest issue last February 9…After reading all the wonderful articles, “Bayaw: The funny side of defiance,” reminded me of a common friend I had with the subject, Jun Sabayton. And that common friend is none other than the late TV personality, activist, and comedian of the absurd, Arvin “Tado” Jimenez. Let me announce here that Tado, as he was popularly known, was also a proud father to a young, gifted writer. Herein attached is a photo of his daughter Diosa’s classroom essay, which she wrote in 2015 when she was 17 or 18 years old. Indulge in this! (Her mother, Leiz Jimenez, graciously allowed me to share this gem.) 🙂

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