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Monday, March 22, 2010


The walls of select LRT and MRT trains are of late abound with Spanish-Filipino poems of varied themes — ranging from travel, globalization, love, life's tragedies, etc. — at times juxtaposed with Filipino-English ones, the former a project of the Instituto Cervantes termed Berso sa Metro, and the latter of the National Book Development Board touted as the Tulaan sa Tren, both of which have tied up with the Light Rail Transit Authority.

I usually don't take a seat while aboard the train and rather stand by the door at the forefront, making my view of such displays restricted to only one or two. However, seeing at least one always brings about a sense of pride in me, realizing that the country's literature is so much blessed with gifted yet prolific poets. Likewise, I am invariably awed by the preeminence of the Spanish poems presented.

I have always marveled at such beautifully written poems that I check who penned them at once after reading them, save for this particular Tagalog poem I read at the weekend while I was on an LRT-1 train with my mother. I found it witty and a thought different from the usual style of other poems exhibited on the train.

The poem reads:
Ikaw ang dahilan kung bakit ako nandito/ Hindi ako mabubuhay kung hindi kita nakilala/ Kung ako'y mamamatay nang hindi ka nakilala/ Hindi ako mamamatay dahil hindi ako nabuhay.

Very amusing and it actually felt kind of weird that I have memorized it in an instant (though not 100% sure that I got it right this time), and every now and then it just pops up in my head and I start reciting it mentally. What bothers me though is that I was not able to see who wrote that four-line poem, let alone notice what its title was.

Reading such poems lifts up my mood; they give me something to look forward to as I take the commuter train five times a week en route to the office. They also pique my interest and my somewhat "seasonal" poetic abilities. It is for this reason that I wonder if I could find other poems on the walls of the LRT-2 trains with such effect on me. Amid this poem-hunting assignment, I might as well copy at least some of the poems' Filipino translations so as to make my train trip worthwhile.

I do find the "adventure" pretty exciting huh, considering that I will only be able to copy the poems en route to the office. Got to start tomorrow then?...


This blog will most likely be one of the umpteen "web logs" — the term from which what we universally call "blog" nowadays is derived — I have had signed up for, but never quite had the chance to hit it big on the cyberspace. Ok, let me tone it down a bit: even had the chance to be of use, a personal diary, so to speak. Oh, I did have a sort-of-well-maintained one, way back during my FBT (stands for free browsing techniques) days on mobile Web. But regretfully, it was inactivated, thus giving me that "whoa!" moment (you see, I rarely have that). Thanks to the site's upgrade.

Ok, moving on, did I mention earlier the possible futility of this account? I, in fact, don't want that to happen. I said it to drive away such "possibility." Kind of a paradoxical approach; you self-contradict what you really mean. (An aside: If there's a person in this world whom I can refer to as a paradox-personified, it's going to be my mother. When she tells you "Go, have that broken when you return it to me," she actually means, "Make sure that when you hand it back to me it's still in good condition." Or when she doesn't want you to be hurt, particularly out of your own doing, she yells, "Ok, don't take your medicine. Just let me know if you're already too sick so that I just have to throw you out of my house." Very sweet. That's why I adore her, my Mama.)
Enough of the nonsense provisos. Since you asked (you did?!), my blog's title Wide White Wall — with WWW acronym, akin to the World Wide Web's — is actually inspired by the wide white wall across my desk in the office. When boredom strikes or when I just want to have someplace to look at to enable my mind to think clearly (or, maybe, to appear intellectual as I actually start to get into trance), the wide white wall comes as an edge. It stirs my imagination, giving me this "blank space" to fill in with my musings. From scratch the thought-smeared white then becomes my imaginary personal freedom wall, an opportune conduit of ideas bulling their way out. This is exactly how I envision this blog to be: an outlet, though digital, of my blabs and raves, of what I feel and think about things, of those I never had the chance to express, well verbally in a sense.

So there it goes... (by the way, one is grateful for having squandered an ample space for the introductory part...^_^)