poetry and simplicity

 

 

Subjunctive Mood

 

 

Love is ever a gift

when not alone a right

when neither should nor must

but only might.

 

Love is pride

in a beggar’s cup

and you may walk away

or you may stop.

I take your gift

as a wide-eyed beggar child

and always it were bread enough

had you merely smiled.

 

But should you more than smile

then giver give your lot

give for all the times

that you did not.

 

 

Swinger

 

 

Because the heart has held its tether

through your own’s uncertain weather

you think it feeds itself

on nothing but forgiving

so swing from devoted to uncaring

strain away, wing back,

dissolve, resolve with each returning.

Grow out can you of this weathervaning

this ruthless penduluming

choose either cleaving or cohesing

find your avatar!

Then oblate into forevering

might rise out of your own limning

love that is moored and unwinging

and elects its own unfreeing.

 

 

Old House Being Torn Down

 

How swiftly the casings of a lifetime fall

Trusses unbind too docilely when it’s time to go.

Yesterday this was a house, though none’s delight to see,

Still doing what houses are put up to do

Yet with dangled gutters and shot roof already nothing more

(nothing less!) than carapace of something,

a life maybe.

She was a small woman, querulous and shy.

I would see her pruning the crotons in her yard.

At times she would see me and talk about babies,

woman chores and woman cares

and differences with the neighbors.

I don’t recall she ever laughed.

So, babies grew up, moved out, begot their own.

Husband got past midlife, sickened and died.

One saw the house – more than the house –

bowing shingle by shingle through the years,

peeling and shedding, leaning and fading.

But now just a few more hammer strokes to fell the posts

absurdly propping squares of sky

where walls had been.

The junk man frets to haul away the pile.

A blow or two; they give, and look, uninterrupted sky.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

Poems of Doris Trinidad, as contained in her book, Now and Lifetimes Ago, published by Giraffe Books, in Quezon City, 2001.

 

Doris Trinidad-Gamalinda is a Filipina poet who began her writing journey as a freshman writing for the campus paper at the University of Sto. Thomas, Asia’s oldest university. She has eight (8) children from her lawyer husband. One of them is the contemporary poet and teacher, Eric Gamalinda.

 

 

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