24 May 2012

To always dress well

The Great Hall
Thomas Disch

You need only have noticed someone once,
and he will have an entree to your dreams
for the rest of your life. Or he may never
reappear at all. Who knows whose names
are there when the credits scroll? Who knows
how often one has passed one's someday spouse
before actually being introduced?
But as to dreams, just multiply
each single unnoticed noticing
by the number of sentient beings everywhere
you've ever lived and think how vast
an afterlife one stands to enjoy
in the world of dreams. That's one good reason
for dressing well (or at least memorably)
and making witty remarks: Strangers
will remember you. There are cats
who've been dead for decades who still
rest comfortably on cushions
in the dreamt apartments of those
who'd thought, “What a lovely cat.”
But alas for the creatures of darkness.
They lived unseen and will not live again.
The day had been a lesson in welcoming strangers and remaining your best self when no one is looking—because you are never certain that you are unseen.

In the morning I had an interview with Alex Carbonell of Studio Fix wherein he talked about the importance of performance backed up by appearance. The man spoke with that rare combination of humor, authority and ease. I was (I must admit, unexpectedly) charmed.

Then in the evening I met old friends and made new ones when I attended High Chair's book launch. I almost didn't go, considering my fears of the North (distance, traffic, crowd), but I sorely missed the company of friends and the company of poets. And I remembered vowing to stop being a recluse at the start of the year.

It was a great day, if only it weren't so short.

14 May 2012


1. Last time I won a medal, I think I was still 4 feet tall.
2. I earned one again yesterday (along with 2 team mates) at the first Columbia Recyclable Regatta held at The Lighthouse Marina Resort in Subic Bay Freeport Zone.

3. It's nice to build something and name it.
4. And sail it.

5. A greater feeling to be off shore and away from it all. I wished we could pause and relax, bobbing on the water.
6. Or continue paddling to the next shore. (But we had to go back and finish a race.)

7. God I love the sea.

04 May 2012

Anita Magsaysay-Ho, 1914-2012

Anita Magsaysay-Ho Mother and Child sketch on a single-fold card
Another kind of loneliness, perhaps, is when you lose someone whom you know you can turn away from but go back to and admit you with open, gentle arms.

03 May 2012

Re-discovering Irving

Washington Irving, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Other Tales
It's been two years since I found this hardbound beauty at a bargain book shop and I cherish it for the dedication written on the flyleaf—

Zach, Read. Love, Dad & Rio (Dec 2005)
That the book is now in someone else's possession and not Zach's is rather sad; but I'd like to assume a happier story: Zach had finished reading the book and let go of it in the spirit of passing on his father's sweet imperative.

I re-unearthed this treasure when I was cleaning my shelf two weeks ago. It was stacked with other, older pretty books I bought but hadn't opened yet—In the Name of the Rose, The Tale of Despereaux, and three titles from Graham Greene. Thought it was a sign for me to finally pore over its pages.

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