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Jul. 4th, 2011 @ 07:42 pm If only...(first draft)
If only chickens learned to fly
We’d be eating fish fillets tonight

This was my little cousin’s writing prompt:

If Only...

If only chickens were conscious enough
to understand their plight

well, you can imagine
how truly pissed off they’d be
and how many reports we would see
describing legions of poultry
committing mass suicide
in attempts to take flight

Forget raining cats and dogs
the sky would open
to lend itself
to a roosted precipitation
feathery snow finding home before the bloody soil

Angry farmers would be forced
to tediously pluck feathers from out of contaminated grounds
giving a whole new meaning to the phrase
“flicking the bird”

If only children were encouraged
to tell more stories like these

If only...

If only each child on the face of this earth
rose to the full potential
they were never told they actually have

If only glenn beck realized
the root of progressive
is progress
then he could finally move forward

If only religion would stay out of politics
and if politics would stay out of religion

If only the sanctity of marriage and the unit of family
had more to do with love and respect
than it does with difference in genitalia
then less children would grow up unloved

If only we dropped knowledge
like we do bombs

If only we had more time

If only compassion grew on trees
then maybe the paper we print money on
would finally drop in the value of greed

If only insurance companies covered patients
instead of customers

If only I could just get to work on time

If only we each prayed
Collectively for every other person
at any given night
we would each have almost 7 billion prayers on our behalves

If only god exacted his will
world peace would not be such an impossible feat
if only we knew what his will was
if only there were a god

If only...

Except all of these are only excuses

We don’t need god
and we don’t need an alternate past
when we can create an alternate future

At some point
you have to stop spouting bullshit
grab life by the horns
and for 8 seconds
just ride

If the radio sounds too repetitive
make a new tune
If slams begin to sound like more of the same
write a new poem
and if my words just sound like a waste of time to you
then I politely ask you to leave the fucking room

The point is you have the power
to create what you demand
find something to believe
then take a stand

in the end
you want to be the man
to proudly claim,
“it has been done”

and not the one
who cowardly concedes,

“if only...”
About this Entry
Oct. 29th, 2010 @ 04:34 pm ...said god to the world (first draft)
When will you finally learn
that you don’t need me?

I created you in your creation of me
We are mirrors reflecting mirrors into infinity
Circular thoughts pushed through holy boxes
and divine books
penned by impure hands

You look to me for what to do
but my words were created
By the God in you

You don’t need me

It doesn’t take a god
to teach you to be a good person
Why lead a good life just for a shot into heaven
That is a corrupt opportunist’s version of morality

You’re worth more than that

From the beat in your hearts
To the strings of subatomic parts
you construct a musical masterpiece
for the cosmos to dance
So why look above
to learn how to conduct?

I know it can get lonely
and at times you need someone to lend an ear
but as an omniscient being
I am anatomically impaired

You don’t need me

You were never banished from paradise
you simply forgot where you came from
Yes you ate the apple
but you forget that I created the tree

You had it right the first time
Don’t toss out common sense
Because you fear the rotting fruit is too sweet to stand
always seek out knowledge when you can

You don’t need me

I am merely a mirror
so look at me if you need to find yourself
but to find a true God

I need to look to you
About this Entry
Sep. 14th, 2010 @ 08:45 am Israel
To wrestle with God
is to wrestle with oneself
and I know it’s a struggle I can never win
Because it is a task that only kills time

But still,
Sometimes I think
God has done some pretty fucked up things in his day

Moses never made it into the promise land
Despite his dedication and giving life to God
Despite speaking against the Pharaoh
and leading his people out from bondage
leading his people to the promise land
Despite being a conduit, a messenger from God to the people
He was denied access
all because he struck a rock instead of merely speaking out to it

And Mother Mary
God comes down to earth to father her child
then leaves
never to be heard from again
until his son is an adult
and that is only to ensure the suffering and sacrifice
Of his only son for the sins of OTHERS

Nice Job Dad

I wonder if Mary even had a choice
Who could say no to God anyway

Some cite Darwin
as an origin of modern infidelity to faith.
And as I begin to understand the mechanics of nature
I struggle with the metaphysics and mysticism of God
But as Steven Weinberg said,
“Scientific discoveries did not make religion impossible,
but they made irreligion possible”

As I continue to struggle to believe
I can’t help but find God in unexpected places.

He was not in the heavens voyeuristically looking down to earth
He was not an old white man with a white beard garbed in white cloth

He is in the space between touch
where love can transcend
like an electrical arc between two broken wires

He is in the anticipation of seeing my wife again
after working the overnight shift for a week straight

He is in that worn telephone line that cuts in an out
but still allows us to be connected with loved ones afar

But still...

He is also in the fist of an abusive lover
and in the cold waters that flood a nation
He is that shit running through veins
racing to beat brains
till the heart stops beating

He is the trigger finger
and the hug of a stranger

See,

God is as fallible as man
Because we have created him
in our own image

And this does not make him Good or Evil
It just
makes him.

He is no longer my mystical patriarch
he is a partner in existence
and embodied by the lack thereof

So I continue to walk alone
in the hearts of others
together with God

Struggling, but at Peace.
About this Entry
Mar. 24th, 2009 @ 09:54 am Excerpts from a Cluttered Mind (edit 1.5)
I've completely neglected to use Live Journal....for a LONG TIME now. Though I'm not too sure about this poem yet...I figured I'd still post it.

At a very young age
I learned precisely how
To forget my multiplication tables
Because, frankly, using a calculator
Just seemed more practical
Than studying

Learning from Einstein
I never tried to clutter my mind
With information I could find
Somewhere else

I never learned my telephone number
Or street address
Thank god for the phone book

I don’t know what year
Columbus sailed the ocean blue
But I know I traveled far
To find new lands when I was four

Don’t ask me who invented the pencil
Or to recite the pledge of allegiance
Besides, if you started in the middle
I bet you’d forget too

What I remember
Is the wine that bled
Not from a cut artery
But from the mere fact that
Your heart was so goddamn full
It was bursting just to get out

How the word caretaker
Has more to do with giving than anything else

I remember the warm eyes of parents
While singing Blister in the Sun on karaoke
How the pride for their son singing seemed to pierce through the room
Like a bullet delivering flowers
How their cheers effortlessly trumped
My laughter at singing a song about masturbation in front of my parents

I remember a mother’s love
And a father’s respect

And I remember it the other way around

I remember how sinking in sand on the beach
So easily brings you closer to eye-level with the horizon
How the distance between the earth and sky become zero
If you can only look far enough into the future

I remember the silence
When a loved one forgets your name
And the sound that breaks
When you’ve realized they can’t remember their own

It’s funny how painful it can be
To shovel dirt on a casket
How each grain of dirt and sand
Seems to pound on your chest
Piercing like a million pieces of glass
Or a broken mirror searching for luck
In the reflections of your heart

I know that music is not notes on a page
But the melodies of life
How that crazy old man with a limp seemed to drum
Tsss da daa Tsss da daa with every uneven step
How his songs could’ve revolutionized an industry
If you only stopped to listen to his words

So don’t ask me who last won American Idol
Because the songs of my fiance’s voice are sustaining spinal chords
Letting words reverberate in my chest
Sending vibrations
Chromatically racing
Up through to my brain.

The phrase I love you
Means a whole hell of a lot more
Than the words printed between the pages
I have refused to memorize
But can damn sure look up and get back to you

Memory
Like life
Is too short to clutter with heartless facts
It’s easier to close a mind
Than to open it
But then what’s the point?
You can’t look to the future
Without remembering the past
But remembering the past
Is more than reporting what happened

To remember the past
Is to relive history

And to create the future
About this Entry
Jan. 23rd, 2008 @ 08:18 pm The "A" Word: First Man of Gods (first draft)
The "A" Word: First Man of Gods (first draft)
As I close my eyes to dream
I drift back and disappear
With the sound of my mother's voice echoing
In the absence of my mind

I once considered an abortion

Life is an amazing thing
When you think of how easily it may have never been

From a sperm who never learned to swim through a fallopian maze
To a flower who forgets to bloom
Or from pulling the plug on a loved one
To a failed mission
We are always just one step away from an abortion

Two years after their second child
My parents contemplated adopting
When miraculously
I was conceived

But 9 weeks into pregnancy
My mother was bedridden
Plagued with illness

Her lungs collapsed in dreams of overwhelming floods
Drowning in fear
She gasped for air
Kicking wildly like the newly conceived

And she can still faintly remember the doctor saying
Termination is an option

Pictures of a dead fetus
Makes choices like these seem easy
For the inexperienced

But my mother could not stop thinking
About how it must feel
For two little girls to grow up without a mother
In the streets of a neighborhood that was steadily growing worse

Or for a husband left alone
To pick up the pieces of a shattered world
Like gluing a broken mirror back together
Praying for seven years of better luck

And sometimes I question
If maybe she should have aborted after all

Every time I remember how embarrassed I was
To hug her in public

Every time I forget to say, I love you
Before hanging up the phone

Every time I take her love for granted
I wonder if maybe
Her life would be better
Were I never to have been born at all

But then I remember
When she told me about the day she became a fortune teller

An ultra sound Sunday
Provided sounds so silent and lovely
Hearts skipped beats
To give dove prints dance music
When dogs cry
The doctor said,

These are your son's hands

My mother saw pens sprout from palms
Like proud sequoias standing tall
With rings that would long outlive my breath

These are your son's legs

She saw stubborn stumps
With feet firmly planted
In the lands of compassion and conviction
Never to bow down to any weather
Like the man she married
Like the children she would raise
Like the parents she would bury

This is your son's heart beat

She saw drums pound rhythms in tree trunks
Unconditional love that would stray only one day
To somehow find way into the hands of her Adam's Eve
Where they may plant forests in the sand
Weeds in the concrete
Jungles in the desert
That would perhaps spawn grandkids of her favorite kind
The independent
The intelligent
The inquisitive
That may ask one day

Where do babies come from?
About this Entry
Aug. 30th, 2007 @ 11:29 pm 1989 (EDIT)
I want to dance like we’re four years old

When nothing seemed to matter

Because everything seemed to matter



Like watching an ant crawl up a twig

Seemed just as cool

As watching a shuttle launch into space at 4 am

Piercing the pitch black darkness

The sky erupting into bright beautiful shades of red

As if to tell us

Yes, yes. Even the biggest skies can bleed.



Back when metaphors weren’t just comparisons

They were reality

Because we didn’t know any better

Because it was better to invent than to play dead

Because our dreams while awake

Were even better than our dreams while we slept



I never wanted to go to bed

So when my mom would turn off the lights

I would shut my eyes

And wake up on a whole new planet.

Where gravity was reversed

And we’d invent planes to land on the ground

And the president would say things like

By 1990 we’ll have planted a man in Atlantis

Bald eagles would be no more to us than rats are

When I’m awake



I want to dance like we’re four years old

Like we got no more soul

So we take off our shoes and dance bare foot in the rain

Following the sounds of raindrops pounding into the ground.

Listening to street lamps hum melodies only we can hear



When believing in Santa

Meant nothing more than a few extra presents after Chanukkah

When being both jewish and catholic was just as normal

As eating dinner with a fork and spoon

On Fried chicken and Adobo Fridays

When clocks would stop

Because it’s always better to imagine tomorrow



I want to dance like we’re four years old

Because I am beginning to forget how it feels to look forward to the future

And the past seems to run laps in my head



I want to go back to a time when crying was ok



When cutting yourself meant

Quitting the team



And snack packs

Did more than substitute for misery



When death was just a joke

We could only get

If we pretended to laugh

And families lasted forever



When graveyards were gardens of stone that finally learned how to bloom



I want to dance like we’re four years old

Because in college, I never had an imaginary friend

But when I was four, I was never alone.



I want to dance like we’re four years old

When our arms would flail and our bodies would shake

Without any comprehension of logical beat



And sometimes the music would stop

But it never stopped me from wanting to dance.
About this Entry
Aug. 22nd, 2007 @ 08:44 am A Requiem for God
I found God in the 11th dimension
On her death bed
Composing a symphony for her next of kin

She quietly waved me in
And smiled.
I could see it in her eyes
Oceans so blue
Even dolphins learned how to sing

With the very raise of her hand
She made the strings vibrate
And Finches were born

As she waved her hand throughout space
Waves crashed on shores

It began to rain
As she began to cry
And the strings became louder
64th notes raced chromatically up fish scales
She erased fermatas
And turned them into eagles' eyes

With her left hand
She conducted in common time
With her right
She danced in and out of odd meter
Juggling 6/8, 7/16, and 5/12 with her three middle fingers

She’s a musical marionette
And her music speaks to me
It reminds me that we are not alone
That while being individualized
We are all still made up of the same strings and frequencies
Plucked and played at integral intervals

It speaks to me
And tells me that we are not the only universe
That God has created an infinite number of symphonies
But by no means
Does this mean we are not special.

To the contrary
If God were to introduce us to her Husband
We would not love her any less
Or think of her as any less of a God
And so are we special and beautiful
In our ordinary existence.

I found God in the 11th dimension
On her death bed
Composing a symphony for her next of kin

She was Mozart
and Beethoven
She was Mudvayne
Charlie Parker
And Alicia Keyes
She was the Beatles
Dream Theater
And Rage Against the Machine
She was Bob Marley
And Johan Sebastian Bach
She was Hildegard of Bingen
She was muse

Creating and inventing
Re-inventing
Explaining to me all the secrets of the Universe
Proving and disproving all the wonderful theories of the world we think we know about

My experience was a physicist’s dream
And she wanted me to tell you
We almost got it
However
With M- and string theory
They’re not loops of string
God’s not a fan of cat’s cradle
They’re more like rubber bands vibrating
Because every piece of matter in this universe needs to learn
That at the heart of our being
No matter how much we’re stretched and pulled
All we need to do is relax
And we’ll snap right back to normal.

And the M doesn’t stand for mystery, membrane, or mystical
It stands for Music

The universe is written in music theory
With sounds so beautiful
You don’t even need to hear them.
You can see them

I found God in the 11th dimension
On her death bed
Composing a symphony for her next of kin

And before I could hear how it ended
She handed me the universe and said,
“I give it to you unfinished
Share with your brothers and sisters
Your children and parents
Your friends and enemies
Add all the timbre you can fathom
When you forget your rhythm
Use the rubato to make it count
Be the Cadenza

And boy let the music play
Because despite my ruse,
You’re all still just one in the same.”

So I took the piece inside my hands
And the best I knew of what to do
Was to hold a fermata for as long as I could
Until I heard God say,
Oh, and Sami, I’m dying to hear how it ends”
About this Entry
Aug. 13th, 2007 @ 05:22 pm Making a Kingdom of Purgatory
I want to open my chest
And let the sunshine out

I want my tears to be the dew
That lets the rainbows reign
Over her flooded cities

Where mermaids sing songs with whales
And penguins escape the prisons of ice and land
So they can soar through the sky dodging stars
Like ships steering through minefields

I want to stroke her hair
Like a harp whose music
Passes past her lips
Like the songs of an angel
Performing for purgatory

If the things she sings can’t grant me into heaven
At least I’ll have one hell of a time listening outside the gates

But it’s funny when our perceptions of ourselves
Don’t match the perceptions of others

See, she feels it’s reversed
Instead of being that light that lifts me up
She feels like she’s the fire trying to bury me down below
And I want to tell her
If that is true
Than I’ll be her step stool
And we’ll never let each other go
Until we’ve finally made a kingdom of Purgatory
And even then
We’ll only let go so we can remind ourselves
How beautiful it is to touch each other once again.

I want to open my chest
And let the sunshine out

‘cause she thinks that sometimes
The night can use a little day

And I know that when we hold our light
Up inside, tightly, hidden from others
We may think we’re warm
But it makes everything around us that much colder
And I may have been born in New York
But I’m still from Florida
So my thin skin
Doesn’t quite know how to appreciate the winter.

I want her to open her eyes
And let the summer out
I have never met someone with eyes so bright
And so dark at the same time
Whose sparkle seems to send kids screaming with excitement out of the classroom
And back into playgrounds and backyards
Jumping rope past spring
And swimming through summer
Sometimes when they get out of the pool
July waters gets stuck in their ears
But it’s only the summer trying to whisper to them,
“I can be here every day of the year
If you want me to”

And I want her to
Be the one to open my chest
And insert herself inside
She’s the one who paces my heart
And on occasion stops it

Just for kicks

She’s the one who makes me sweat
From her sunshine
Through the inside out.

I just wished she knew
That my nights would last forever
If she never chose raise the sun each day

I want her to know
Even if she were burning in hell
I’d rather pick up a pitch fork
And park my ass up on the lava to her left
Than to ever stray away

She’s the kind of stock I can see myself invest in
Even when she says the market’s going to crash
So when the time comes for me to go

Look one stop past hell
Just before the beautiful gates
You’ll find me there building a kingdom for my princess
With the songs of an angel in my ears.
About this Entry
Jun. 30th, 2007 @ 09:14 am Why I Never Dance
Imperialism is a word that sits on the tips of Filipinos' tongues
Like the sting of a sore that will never heal
Because of all the shit we're forced to swallow

In Cebu, they celebrate Sinulog
Where revelers dance in unified rhythm
More currently resembling line dancing
But also representing the motion of a current (sulog)
Of the Pahina river

This dance
Which has been around long before the arrival of Catholicism
Now serves as a display of catholic embrace
No longer idolizing past Anitos
But now idolizing Santo Nino
A statue of the child jesus
Brought by Magellan on April 7, 1521

Funny, we still call it embracing Catholicism
When 20 days after the coming of the Santo Nino
On the shore of Mactan
Lapu-Lapu took Magellan's life

And so the idea was reinforced
These godless, brown savages must be saved
These animals must be tamed

But the infection of the Imperialist World
Was not welcomed with open arms
It came like the pull of a trigger
Like burning homes

It came like comfort women
Legs spread with a gun against their face
Like the tears of their crying children

It came like World Wars
Like resistance

It came like a virus
An epidemic
A plague

It came without end
And they still suffer from it

Corrupt politicians
False capitalistic hopes
Cities of families poisoned
By toxic waste left by former occupiers
And current allies

Media Gods and Goddesses
Resembling mestizos and foreigners
Speaking in tongues of more English than tagalog
Proving to the citizens
That just like in America,
Whiter is BETTER

But the tears are no longer clear
When they're mixed with blood
So sometimes I can't see too well
But my soul still feels like it's being pulled
Between heaven and hell
When I can't stop to make a stand
Against things done to my ancestors' land

Because as much as I have to say
My ancestors' culture was raped
I am forced to say
My ancestors raped a culture

As much as I have to point my finger at crooked descendants
My crooked appendage always comes back to me
Because I am nothing without my history

And I am the product of both the colonized and the colonizer
But I will not apologize for the sins of my forefathers
Like the bastard child beaten by unloving parents
I will respect where I come from
But I will not apologize
And never forget
About this Entry
May. 27th, 2007 @ 10:04 am Lessons that should be learned before judging a poetry slam at the Orlando International Fringe Fest
1.You know NOTHING about me.

2.Stay awake while listening.

3.Listen while listening.

4.Giving someone a 10 does not give you the license to be a racist, offensive, insensitive son of a bitch (I apologize to your mother, I'm sure she's a wonderful person, it's just too bad she bore such a shame to her family.)

5.Living in a rich, white town does not give you the right to be an idiot. I know many well-to-do, white individuals. ALL INTELIGENT PEOPLE.

6.Giving someone a 4 does not mean you must compensate by providing the audience with a witty comment belittling a poet, listener, HUMAN BEING, animal, plant, fungus, bacteria, or protozoan. You are drunk. And NOT funny.

7.Claiming a relative has the very disease you publicly mock (which the last poem addresses), does not fucking fly. May you live a long life suffering from every disease imaginable.

8.Before criticizing an individual's appearance, look in the fucking mirror (not to be criticizing you, I believe everyone to be beautiful. I'm just saying-)

9.Appreciate art, love, life and knowledge above your beer.

10.If you like a poet, buy a chapbook (This is not necessary, I just highly suggest it)
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