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Saranggola ni Pepe
(Lyrics by Nonoy Gallaro, Popularized by Celeste Legaspi)

Matayog ang lipad ng saranggola ni Pepe
Matayog ang pangarap ng matandang bingi
Umihip ang hangin, nawala sa paningin
Sigaw ng kahapon, nilamon na ng alon
Malabo ang tunog ng kampanilya ni Padre
Maingay ang taginting, rosaryo ng babae
Nay…nay…nay…nay…

Matayog ang lipad ng saranggola ni Pepe
Matayog ang pangarap ng matandang bingi
Hinuli ang ibon, pinagsuot ng pantalon
Tinali ng pisi, hindi na nagsinturon
Dumaan ang jeepney at gumuhit pa sa kalye
Mauling ang iniwang hindi na tinabi
Nay…nay…nay…nay…

Matayog ang lipad ng saranggola ni Pepe
Matayog ang pangarap ng matandang bingi
Pinilit umawit, ang naglaro’y isang ingit
Lumuha ang langit at ang mundo ay nanliit
Kumakaway sa bakod ang anghel na nakatanod
Sumusuway sa utos, puso’y sinusunod
Nay…nay…nay…nay…

collection of various white note papers on white background.

The song “Saranggola ni Pepe” written by NonoyGallardo, was popularized by Celeste Legazpi in the late 70’s. Its highly visual lyrics and elusive meaning appealed to political activists who, oppressed under the rule of the Marcos regime, could not openly criticize his government, for fear that they could end up “invited” to the military camps and end up like many who were held as political prisoners without due process, and many of whom became “the disappeared.”

Still, never explicitly categorized as a protest song, the folk song elements of this music also appealed to the masses and the children; and it was routinely included in school program performances.  Personally, this song appeals to me in its poetic ellipse — its levels of meaning and interpretations, as versatile and playful as the archetypal kite.

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