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Zero Hour Doc

Hours from here 
My man went from door to door 
Offering our pigs and chickens at half the price 
For any moving vehicle that could bring me to you

That, we don’t have, the farmers said
but blood we can give
On trucks loaded with cane;
On top of jeepneys they came
Pint after pint was wasted; their blood was rejected 
They were too malnourished, you said 
You needed medicines instead

So my man rushed back home while I bled 
You were close at hand. You knew.
You passed me by a hundred times. 
I could wait, but my child could not.

My Love’s Labor Lost

It’s hours till dawn, why should you insist? 
The spirits just want to be appeased. 
Doctors know nothing, can’t you see? 
If we align her bones, we’ll soon have that baby. 
So the hag twisted her shoulder this way and that 
Until I heard a bone crack.

Then my love said: I’m seeing black. 
It’s time, I said. Let’s go! 
But the freaks looking on said: “No!” 
We have to wait for the sun to rise.


Rochit I. Tañedo
Rochit I. Tañedo
Rochit I. Tañedo wrote features for weekly magazines and GMA7 and ABS CBN. As founding director of Creative Collective Center, Inc, she produced the “Who Owns Women’s Bodies?” (WOWB) art exhibit that traveled to seven cities nationwide and abroad. Tañedo wrote a musical on HIV&AIDS; and directed the radio series titled Pag-ibig, Sekswalidad, at Relasyon (PSR) for UNICEF in 2000-2004. She won an EMMY Award for her production work on the documentary, The Philippines: Life, Death and Revolution (1986) aired on NBC Today. A National Book Development Trust Fund grantee in 2016, her book entitled Come Back to Me (Mothers Lost in Reproductive Health Delay) is published by Ateneo de Naga University Press (2023)


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