Nostos

BY MARK ANGELES
Posted by Bulatlat
Vol. VII, No. 23, July 15-21, 2007

This is a place for the lost.
In this place there are only pictures of them
as in a memorial for the dead.
Though they are not dead. Only presumed.
Since the last of them – eyes, arms, limb,
hairstrand, even the smoke of their breath –
had been snatched away by the shadows.
In these days, people don’t die of old age
or cancer or mishap. People die of bullets
or were hauled from their ordinary places:
while they are eating lunch, waiting in line
for the next jeepney ride, while buying milk.
The shadows execute their modus operandi
at broad daylight. What amulet can give
the power to erase the tracks of their feet?
What endowment can strike witnesses blind?
In this place for the lost,
pictures had ceased existing as souvenirs.
They are now as dear as names;
now as priceless as memories.
For in this place, longing is juvenile
and teardrops fall not for the departed
but neither for those who stayed behind.
The candles had flickered and christened
the last ounce of blood in the skulls:
It is Justice that needed to be found.

Posted by Bulatlat

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