Brok’n hearts
lost souls
searching —
by gaps;
when one.

A heart that’s whole knows no discomfort. It has pieces that are complete and complementing. There are no deep voids that seek for a fill; no hollow spaces that call for a push.

However, we, ourselves, seem to unconsciously betray our hearts. As humans, bearing the gift of infinity threatens the snugness of pieces perfectly made for each other. We change. Continuously. Our day-to-day experiences mold certain sides of our hearts that soon, we realize, we have developed sharper edges that harm and at the same time, fatter curbs in our defense.

Our partners change just like us. Sadly, however, they do not change their pieces in proportion to ours. They have their own sundry ways of transforming. Often, and without us knowing, we prick them with our own sharp edges. Sometimes, it is us who gets pierced.

This is how the heart learns about discomfort. This is how humans suffer: broken in halves, lost and alone.

Many of us try to make broken pieces fit again by desperately twisting and turning parts of ourselves. We make half-hearted compromises and declarations of forgiveness though we have not really forgotten. We try to cling to others no matter how their edges hurt. We forget about ourselves. Or we think too much of ourselves and shut out all attempts for contact. All these efforts are futile. They result into further, separated disfiguration. We remain weak and apart.
Space: “the boundless regions of the infinite.” Many of us dread to hear the word uttered in the midst of conflict. Painful, it is. But it is the only possibility that a half-hearted act can give best.

After a while, the weight of separation will be lifted. We realize that the heart magically heals itself when it gets to bask in the gift of humanity: to be weightlessly floating on limitless space. This is how people, dance.

Images by Joyce.

28 Februaru 2009


How To Love A Man

How To Love A Man

To love a man,
there are many ways.
You can trap him;
keep him under your spell,
serve him,
play him, or
give him away.

But to truly love a man,
you need to love yourself first;
know your worth
and never sell yourself short.

You have to know how to trust
so you can give him freedom:
the space to grow,
to breathe,
to learn his mistakes.

To love a man is simple:
you just have to be his friend —
sit with him
through his favorite movie,
but try not to give advice,
offer help
though only hints have been dropped.

How to love a man?
There are many ways indeed.
But to truly love one,
you have to take him for who he is;
accept that you cannot change him
(unless he wants to).
He may forget dates
but appreciate that he remembers
details like
how good you looked
and how right it felt
that night you first kissed.

To love him,
you do not have to lose your head.
You just have to see him in black and white;
speak not when you’re at the height of your passion;
and know how to fire your weapons
without killing him.

And to love a man.
to truly love one
without losing yourself,
you have to make him feel wanted,
but survive
when you are
out on your own.

Image by Joyce. 11/06/06.

A Surreal Conjunction

Conjunction is a term used in positional astronomy and astrology. It means that, as seen from some place (usually the Earth), two celestial bodies appear near one another in the sky. The event is also sometimes known as an appulse. -Wikipedia

Who would have thought we’d ever happen?

You and I have our own carefully calculated places in the universe; spinning in our own axes; moving, revolving on our own paths and yet, we collide – at least from the earth’s point of view – such that we fulfill a certain scientific prophecy: the conjunction.

We happened (and we ended) for a split second in the universe’s time.

Isn’t it amazing how two different people, created by a series of fortunate accidents, meet and come together in the most unlikely place and time? For somehow, the universe knows how to cooperate. There’s always a way in space to give rhyme to the countless beating humdrums of stars and planets . . . and of rocks.

Why do we always have to see conjunctions from the face of the earth? Why do relationships always have to be judged from a third person’s point of view? Will these judgments ever be fair knowing that sentiments are confined within the person who feels them?

Maybe we did not really happen. Maybe we just imagined we did.

How we found ourselves “occupying the same position in the right ascension” for our observer’s point of view remains a mystery we dare not solve. By doing this, we have denied ourselves of possibilities; of a rarity that everyday people fail to see.

It is now all about finding a scientist – a mad man; a lonely boy on the face of the earth – who will take time to see the beauty of it all. And who, most of all, will be crazy enough to believe about how each of us felt.

Will we both live to find ourselves in another conjunction?

An Open Letter

Dear K,

As of writing, you are still too young to read this. But I hope that, in your adolescence, when that time your doubts on me start to come, you will stumble upon this blog. I hope that this will give you answers and when this does not, I hope that this will give you faith.

Today, I watched you walk down a few short streets in Makati; all the time, never losing your grip on my hand. I wonder, twenty years from now – when you are about the same age as mine: will you ever remember this day we both looked forward to for about a year? Will you be walking on this street in your own pair of heels; fully in control and on top of things?

You were beautiful. I was elated, not because everyone thought you were my mirror image, rather because you possessed your own charm. I looked at you, on our way home, and beyond an old self-portrait that was your face was a look so innocent yet lost in a mix of perception and inquiry.

I know you will be a woman; one with her own style, strength and substance. I do not intend to make you live a comfortable life out of lies and partial truths. Maybe some truths will have to be sugar-coated while your understanding is limited by your experience. But, trust me, my way of protecting you is through exposing you to knowledge. I want you to learn how to stand on your own feet for this is what makes a woman out of a lady.

You can hate me. Though hate is such a strong word, it is normal. I felt that more than once with your grandparents. As a girl who was about your age, I thought of them in superlatives: the best-looking pair, the smartest and the greatest. They were perfect; they were invincible. However, as I grew up, I learned that they are human: flawed and vulnerable. This was where my frustration started. It furthered and deepened upon the realization that these two people, who both created me, are, in fact, very different from their offspring. In the end, though, hate will lead you nowhere. Your parents – and whether they are present or not in your life, are part of the reality that you have to deal with. You will be able to trust and understand others only when you start trusting and understanding the people whom you came from.

Sometimes, though, I feel the need to ask for your forgiveness. I am sorry I had you at a time when I did not know yet how to manage my emotions. I am sorry I lack the guts to take a leap to a different career or a second job, for me to be able to independently provide for the two of us. I am sorry I failed at giving you a good father. I am sorry I get lost in my own problems.

with my newborn

On our waking moments, I have to be two times strong to keep you secure. But at night, when you are asleep, I wrap my arms around you to gather all the strength I need for the next day. My life has been a mess ever since we started sleeping in separate rooms. You just do not know how lost I am without you. That is why having you sleep beside me last night was magical. This is how I renewed my strength: in the dark, with our arms around each other; your breathing slow and relaxed. My little one was lost in that place between sleep and awake; listening to the whispered tune of the lullabies I sang to my womb.

I love you, baby.

Mommy Joyce

29 October 2008

Once, we were dreamers.

0277I once dreamed to live a first lady’s life. I dreamed with my heart’s fullness; my hand secured by another’s tight grip. For a while, we remained fixated on this dream. We did not want to let go.

But one day, sooner or later, dreamers have to wake up. Reality shook us up. We realized how utopian the phrase you and me against the world is, especially when you and me’s ties are weak. It extinguished the best of ourselves. We abandoned our dream.

Now, three years later, I think about the dream and of how it speaks of the old times and the person I was before. While I know in my heart that we will never be a part of each other’s dreams anymore, still, I choose to remember. I guess that at the onset of separation, bad memories usually dominate the thoughts. After a while, though, only the good ones matter.

I still dream of living a first lady’s life. I dream about charitable work without bundy clock deadlines and payslip expectations.I dream about flights that bridge the rich and the poor. I dream about a huge “live-in” closet and a thousand shoe pairs; a high-ceilinged home library and a hundred thousand books; and a sprawling garden and a terrace where coffee, art, writings and conversations take place. And most of all, I dream about not having to go through the tedious task of applying for a Solo Parent ID for an additional seven days of leave. I want to bring and fetch my child(ren) to school everyday.

I still dream with my heart’s fullness. But for now, only this, secures me.

04 March 2009

Photo Credit: http://www.stpete.org/HR_Photos/0277.jpg

Dark Angel

Dark-Angel-II‘Angels of the love affair, do you know that other,
the dark one, that other me?’

-Anne Sexton

Oh angel of darkness,
tell me how you ruin’d;
blew this love to the wind.

You blame my recklessness.

I think you’re in waiting
to the slips; to the fall
’cause you knew I was small –
I’m made to be hurting.

What calling do you seek
to rouse the madness I
hid away from his eye?

Let it sleep when I’m weak.

You should carry the light
in the midst of shadows;
my angel for sorrows,
let my heart rest tonight.

27 February 2009

Love and Cigarettes

When there’s smoke, there’s fire.

Smokers in love are masochists. Perhaps they figured that the best way to tame some passions is by polluting the organ that brings that vital element to the heart; clogging arteries and blurring chambers from crimson to bland.

Smoke is denser after the fire.

When everything else burns into ashes, only the walls bear witness to the fire that once sparkled in its gloom. Some lovers decide to stay. For a while, their bodies sway with the ascending fumes; wiping tears as they get to the eyes. In the end, they tap their toes to end the final number.

After all, it’s the smokers who quit and not the smoke.

For love, like atoms, are but diffused.

11 June 2009