This is a collection of anonymous
Filipino prose and poetry, strained from the recesses of memories.
Recollecting them was hilarious and brought with it a joy in
rediscovery and an appreciation of the innocence of those years,
the absurd humor, the easy laughter.
Also, it recalls a time now
gone, of a cultural life and the ability of its language to have
fun at its own expense, with simple rhythms and nonsense of rhymes,
a pinch of colonial flavor and a dash of western spice, but so
Filipino. It brings
back a childhood, long before television consumed all the idle
moments. When toys were scarce or make-do with bottle-caps and
tin cans. When children played hide-and-seek, piko, or patintero
with great intent and delight. When language was a verbal playground,
as words became toys and a rhyme made the game, sometimes devoid
of content, but often with a fecundity of creativity at play.
Some were merely costumed
poesy, rhymed without reason, but imaginative in preposterous
brevity. Some are set into music, meant for acappelic renditions.
Some require a declamatory delivery to exaggerate that quality
of impertinence critical for eliciting that cackle, giggle, or
Some are from my fathers's
own memory polished from many years of countless recitations.
Three - Ang
Tatlong Magkakaibigan, Luneta, and
Ako'y Matutulog - are the only serious verses in the
collection. It was father who made it easy and fun to traverse
in those uncertain years of forbidding new language of sex and
sexuality. Of course, to mother's unending consternation.
And inevitably, things ephemeral
fall prey to time. Half-remembered, half-forgotten, they recede
farther back into memory. The games have changed and that particular
art of prose and poetry is gone. This collection is for those
who remember. For those who have forgotten. And for those too
young to remember. That they might find the occasion to laugh
and appreciate what may soon be lost forever.
And if one needs
another reason, why this collection . . .?