Pause for a Moment

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The summits of the Pride Mountains 
are so high that they could not 
be conquered. Glorious to the eyes 
but tiresome to caring hearts. 
And the trails to the Valley 
of Compassion are now long 
forgotten. It seems we’re entrapped 
in a war zone you call Ambition.

Deep, deep within the crying souls 
and wounded feelings, scorching 
the lava flows of hatred further energizes 
the anger within. Incensed impulses rule, 
brushing tact and cautious thoughts 
aside. Temperatures of words soar 
to the heavens, blackened clouds 
of senseless rebukes and rebuttals drop 
like corrosive rains laden with ashes 
of incinerated friendships. Yes, friendships –
once upon a youthful day.

Each wag of one sharp tongue, explosion 
of a pen, and press on the keyboard 
strikes down the last standing bits of care 
and bittersweet memories – Oh! There were! – 
of togetherness. The rolling clouds of acid words
and thoughts rush to finish off every sense of reason, 
every pixel of journaled, shared, rosy season 
of companionships past, of picnics by the pond 
of some black or green mountain, of dips in a cool, 
crystalline river as it hums lullabies of soothing 
bubble and pebble chimes. Yes, once upon a time, 
real time, not myth . . . not distant.

And one can only hope for restored sanities 
after all that dust has settled to the desperate ground. 
When all that remains are sighs of requiem, mournful taps,

In memory of burned bridges, 
of broken friendships –
          Let us pause for a moment of silence.


Jun Lit
Jun Lit
Jun Lit, who holds a Ph.D., is a professor at the Environmental Biology Division, Institute of Biological Sciences, University of the Philippines, Los Banos College, Laguna. He is also Curator of Scale Insects, Etymology Section, of the UPLB Museum of Natural History.


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