Bayang Magiliw


I am a Filipino
I have a spirit that cannot be bent nor broken
I am remain resilient, unfazed and unbowed
I am a survivor
I fall, I lose, I cry but when the sun rises
I get up, I win and smile again




I was cleaning up my inbox when i saw this. I wrote this six years ago.

My apartment smells like stale smoke from week-old cigarettes. The summer heat is slowly melting the rank sweat that clung to the walls. The bed is untidy and pillows are all over the place. Cigarette packs serve as conversation pieces.

I stare at my mobile, waiting for a message that I knew would not come while my cigarette slowly burns.

I just woke up from a disturbed sleep. That’s the kind of sleep I’ve been having these past few days. As I sit there, half asleep, my mind still brushing away the cobwebs of dreams, I pondered on the things that have happened. Some existential bullshit I’ve been forcing myself lately.

The air is sticky with humid much like in a rubber suit. I take a drag, the nicotine invade my lungs once more. I reach out for a glass of water just to wash the bitter taste away. My room mate hasn’t come home yet, so I am left alone to my own devices, trying to pass the time as I gather my thoughts.

I’ll be turning 25 this year. A quarter of a century. Old by most standards. I’m one in a generation experiencing the ‘quarter-life crisis.’ A new term coined for us folks who grew up right smack in the break-neck speed of technological evolution. A world where lines are blurred between the virtual and the real one.

My throat aches from the invasion of the poison I force into my body everyday. My mobile rings, jolting me out of my thoughts.

One of my clients needs a report.

There you go. I have no personal life anymore. People bug me even if i’m out of the office. I don’t reply. It’s my day off, give me a break.

I drag myself off the bed, flick the cancer stick away and try to fix myself a decent meal. I have an erratic meal schedule.

As erratic as my own personal life.

I can still feel my parent’s disappointment everytime they see me. I can hear the words they never utter but have been playing in their heads: you wasted your life, dirtbag.

That ruined my appetite. I was preparing myself for a long and lazy day, but my mind had plans of its own. I will not be at peace today. Crap.

I mentally ticked off all the things that I need to do for the day and like the procrastinator that I am, decided to do away with them altogether. It’s my off for chrissakes, I want the day to pass by without me doing any productive work.

Or maybe I could just clean the apartment. Maybe not. There’s too much clutter, I don’t know where to start. I don’t want to complicate my life by prioritizing which areas to clean first. besides, I’m not getting sick yet of the chaos, it’s all good.

Where to?

It’s still all up in the air but my mind is set. I may not feel the pain of being uprooted yet but I feel hopeful. More than two decades of living here has made me who I am today. Yet the thought of leaving all of these scares me. I know I am making the right choice; but that doesn’t change the fact that this is going to be my biggest leap of faith.
So here’s to being a grownup and making all those grownup decisions.
Wish me luck.


from the ashes…


i have been meaning to write again but inspiration eludes me. i worry sometimes that this skill would atrophy.

whenever i am in front of a computer, writing a post is the farthest thing from my mind. life and work has become distractions instead of the sources of literary inspiration. i am contented with reading other people’s work and silently wish that i could be as adept at writing as they are. but unfortunately, one has to sift through a lot of emotional trash before finding a little bright spot of ‘writing potential’.

i will write again soon. don’t count me out yet.

consider this an apology, a greeting and a desperate call for attention (an exaggeration, i know) rolled into a few lines of words.

we will see each other again soon.

Lose Yourself

Not my original image. Downloaded from web.

“In these pages I lose myself. Every chapter a road, a path to an adventure my mind willingly takes. I walk through the alleys, rooms, highways and stairwells. And I cry and laugh and sigh”- cofiboi

Suspended disbelief, that’s what some call it. Most writers use this effectively and the voracious reader that I am, gobble it all up- hook, line and sinker.

Reading has been more than a hobby for me. It has become a source of inspiration. I get pleasantly surprised with the works of unknown writers whose talent is only given justice between the pages of their published work. I do not look at the world’s best seller lists. I prefer to go to second hand book stores and rummage through the piles of used and read books- which is an adventure in itself- and find worthwhile reads and ultimately be amazed at the authors’ deft writing.

One of the first few books I’ve read which made a lasting impression on me was Jane Heller’s ‘Cha, Cha, Cha.’ Based on the cover, one might dismiss it as your ordinary run-off-the mill ‘chick-lit’ but when you start to get into the meat of this witty thriller, you’ll find out that the author is extremely talented. Her scathing lines equals those of Dexter Morgan’s sarcasm.

Another source of inspiration comes from Peter Straub and Stephen King’s ‘The Talisman.’ I remember seeing this fantasy heavyweight from a friend’s library. One of the best collaborations I’ve read so far. This book is the type of novel that needs to be put down from time to time in order for the reader to absorb the richness of the narrative and to process the intricate realities the authors have woven. I still get goose bumps when I think about those sleepless nights when I was reading the book. It’s so vast and mind-boggling and all you can do is marvel at the sheer talent the authors have.

And when I grew up and life got in the way, reading was the farthest thing from my mind. Replaced with life’s trivialities and adulthood.

But just like Alice, down the rabbit hole I went- again. Reading has become second nature to me. It empowered me to be more creative, to see the world not just through rose-colored glasses but in a blinding stained-glass kaleidoscope.

And where my feet fails me to travel great distances, reading makes me fly.