The way

Rough roads, smooth roads
Cement, asphalt, dirt
One lane, two lanes, three lanes
One way, two-way, road closed
Bougainvilleas in center islands
Painting concrete in colorful hues

Fields of green
Quarries of various earthen shades
hills and mountains
green, trees drowned
or barren, wounded, raped

Towns, cities
Empty roads, truck-filled highways
Buses, jeepneys, trikes
People walking, standing, sitting
Waiting for the sun to sleep
Gasoline stations, stop-overs

Restaurants, shops, stores
Kambingan, bulalohan
Flags signaling
Steamed corn by the highway
Stalls of coco vinegar
Rattan furniture

Charcoal and wood
Tired vendors
Water, eggs, local fares
Morning till night
Sweating profusely
The sun can be cruel

Its too early for tagay
Pineapple juice and rum
Beer or gin
Iron Man, Jose Rizal, Thing
Kingkong and Shrek

Men in uniform
Ladies too
Checkpoints, wanting to be seen
Bridges, rivers and lakes
Dried, quarried
Backhoes, bulldozers, and trucks

The way, stalled
Construction straight ahead
Work that seems to go on forever
The sun’s setting down
Fire streaked skies
Orange-hued landscapes

The sun peeks
Through giant billboards
Yawns as darkness
Cozily blankets the skies
Soft, cotton, hugs
Warm, comfortably cool

Midnight green, bright yellow
Fading into the paleness
Of life
Sweetened naturally
Thanks to science

Onions, garlic
Bundled, hanged
Aswangs don’t exist
The fragrant aroma
Of a hot steamy fried rice
Generously seasoned and spiced

Steep roads
Snaking in the darkness
Treacherous road
“Have a safe trip”, “Be alert”
The stars have descended
In the summer city that never sleeps

The journey
Is what we make of the trip
A constant struggle
Or an adventure
Slowly, silently revealing
The colors of the fields

Or enveloping the world
In darkness
But even in darkness
Shimmers can be gleaned
To guide us
As we go our way

On our way
To the promised

28 April 2017
On the way to Baguio City to visit the cloistered nuns together with the Philippine Carmelite Family


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