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(translated from “Lason” (see original excerpt below) by Joi Barrios

We grasp the knives’ edges
because we have been edged onto
the lips of ravines,
because wretchedness is wretched.
We self-consume in flames,
because we are enslaved
by the country gasping for life



(artwork) Astonished Mother  by 

Alfonso Ossorio (Philippines, active United States, 1916-1990) 

 posted under LACMA public domain policy http://collections.lacma.org/node/167355



~ Joi Barrios


Kumakapit tayo sa patalim,
Pagkat tayo’y nagigipit,
Sa gilid ng bangin ay natutulak,
Pagkat ang dalita’y marahas.
Sa apoy ay nagpapatupok,
Dahil binubusabos
Ng bayang nagdarahop.


the full original poem can be found here: