Hounding his false dreams
Cared for grades than the lessons
Dispersed knowledge gained.
On my twelfth birthday, my grandfather said to me, “your judgment towards circumstances determines your destiny,” but it took me three more years to finally understand what he meant.
Thank you It’s PH Blog for nominating me for the 03 days 03 Quotes Challenge. Rules are
1. Share three quotes on three days in a row, one on each day.
2. Nominate three bloggers on each day.
And here’s the quotation that will surely haunt you, from one of my most favorite collection of short stories:
“I learned that the world didn’t see the inside of you, that it didn’t care a whit about the hopes and dreams, and sorrows, that lay masked by skin and bone. It was as simple, as absurd, and as cruel as that.” — from Khaled Hosseini’s And the Mountains Echoed.
My nominees for today are the following:
2. It’s Jerrod
I once believed that those people, who are mathematically-inclined, generally have a hard time in learning the languages and the literature, as experts mostly say. But ironically, I simultaneously discovered creative writing and mathematics as my deep-rooted passions, and I feel that I cannot live if one overrides the other. Therefore, as much as possible, they should be kept balanced.
Since grade school, I had so many detractors who did not believe in whatever I can do. For example, there are people who never thought that I can do well in mathematics, simply because I got straight 75 grades in my arithmetic classes. Thanks to my mentor, John, who was a theoretical physicist, for discovering my talent in numbers, firstly when I solved a Calculus problem when I was still in sixth grade. He once happily remarked to his student, which was me: “This kid is not dumb for not knowing the half of a half. Give him anything that involves higher mathematical skills, and he won’t bother solving the problem even if it will take him days, weeks, or months to finally arrive with a complete, amazing solution.”
I know I can also do well in creative writing, but honestly, there are times when I feel that I am not confident with my writing. That is why I have learned to blog, and because of that, my connections rapidly grew, and I am not anymore afraid of hearing criticisms from other writers, because I know that whenever they find faults in my writing, I can learn from them. Also, in my posts I realized that I could also inspire other people.
I know, I believe, I can continue my passion with numbers and letters, and I hope people will continue in giving all the love and support that I need.
A response to Daily Prompt’s “I Have Confidence in Me”
In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Image Search.”
Longing for your arrival
Waiting for a chance.
But no departures
Shall shatter our love.
The piles of rocks
From a speedy avalanche
I found myself
With heart racing
In terror, I screamed
But my voice seems
To only bouncing back
No one heard me
I only thought of
Letting the night pass by
The howling wolves
Terribly scared me
I thought of you
While jailed in ice
The next day
I don’t know why
But I woke up
In a hospital bed
And I saw you
Touching my forehead
“I’m here now. Don’t worry.”
Your smiles’s enticing,
Invites me to spend
One more sweet day.
And fortnights pass
Kissing on thorned bushes.
Life’s filled with no regrets
Rolling ourselves on the bed
Shared each other’s glances.
Entering the coffee shop
Staring at you as you order;
Sipping the same drink together
While I’m wiping your lips.
Your smiles’s enticing
Persuades me to wake up again
For one more sweet day.
Forgetting all yesterday’s pain
As we linked our hands
Feeling the heat in your palm
Showing me your burning love.
Going out on Saturdays
Treating me with street food
Bringing me to places I never knew.
We stood by the corner,
Passed by long, narrow roads
But I knew and I am sure
I am in love with you.
And everytime you let me go,
Everytime you lose your smile
Ships sink, my world feels cold.
Today, I brought no ring
But here’s your popcorn, dear.
Kneeling in front of you,
To ask you to marry me.
Your smiles’s enticing,
Requests me to spend
One more sweet day.
And I am all the more willing
To share your pains in the past
And the uncertainties of the future
I can’t afford to lose your smile again
Stay forever with me.
And in this another sweet day,
Will you marry me?
A response to Daily Post’s Writing Challenge: Genre Blender; I used Romance as my genre and Poetry as my style.
A response to Daily Prompt’s Sweeping Motions
This isn’t a Harry Potter story
Or of some lovers sharing glory
I opened my phone, utters some voice
You said, where are you now?
But the calling time’s maximized,
So I clicked the red button.
The train driver had notified:
Taft Avenue, this is the end station.
I looked outside, sunset starts
And the clouds on the opposite side
Filled the skies with gloomy shade
I phoned you back again
Saying, wait for me there
You dropped the call; shocked to see me
As if I were a ghost, or a mystical wannabe
Our eyes interlocked, moments froze
We met by the rusty escalator
But with you, tightly holding a girl’s hand
Like I expected, she’s of beauty
Her posture’s great, complexion dominates.
Uttering a word, you cannot do.
She said, do you know each other?
You said no, so pain stabs me
We both nodded, but I was doomed
Then the rain heavily falls, shouts in thunders.
We both parted ways, soon after
All the rainbows slowly fade
At that transit’s end station.
Visit our country. Open your hotel room’s television to check out for the latest local news. And when you finally have done it, do not anymore be surprised with what you might see.
The Philippines, while being described figuratively as the Pearl in Orient Seas, prides itself for its long tradition of corruption. And as part of this crocs-inspired culture, let me introduce to you, dear strangers, a city where I first gave something to contribute to Earth — an addition to the exponential growth of world’s population — and also where I currently lay my body to hibernate for years: Makati City.
While Dan Brown through his novel, Inferno, described the country’s political capital, Manila, as gates of hell, I would describe my dear city, the deemed financial capital, as one that is masked in hell. No, I am not describing it as torrid as if you were already experiencing the extreme temperatures inside the future lake of fire and sulfur. I am not also telling you to dislike the historic Pasig River, which streams across its map and of course is now polluted and as dirty as the recent politics.
But beware, you might die since crocodiles are everywhere. Of course, I am not talking about literal death. Just be aware of the current system — bribery plus fake biddings plus ghost employees.
Sometimes, I blame the world for throwing and disposing all the scumbags at my place. Well, I have no choice, but that’s silly. If you want to be rich like the Ayalas and Gokongweis, put your business along the streets of Makati Avenue and Ayala Avenue. Whenever you go out of your office, watch the street children pulling wooden carts, begging for money and inhaling liquids from the inside of a tiny plastic bag. Oh, I forgot the other part of the culture: when the traffic light orders us to stop, we will defy the rule and then rush, crossing the street, aware but never minding the dangers we might face.
The strangest thing for a visitor? Various techniques of snatchers or thieves, such as those being used by dura-dura (saliva) gang and akyat-bahay (climb the house) kids. Try also our local street foods if you want to get any of these three: Hepatitis A, B, or C.
But sometimes, experiencing a bit of hell means tasting a lot of heaven.
Welcome. And enjoy.
Welcome, Stranger. I think I violated the Prompt’s rule. But I don’t mind, anyway.
‘Twas a big, rainy day
Friends come by and say hey
And all my clouds turned to gray
Finals will come by May.
My eyes locks at computer screen
Feeling nerd, I have been
Summer fades, stress release!
Playing games with ease.
At last, the exam was laid
On my chair’s desk, nerves break
I looked into the first query
My nose bled in fury!
I came across a pavement
Full of compulsive buyers and sellers
Of different garments.
Nervous, held my bag,
Fearing snatchers to pass by.
Suddenly I heard someone spoke
Her voice’s enticing, clinging into my ears
Her words: Buy this at low cost.
‘Twas a old woman, with black-grey hair,
Rugged clothes welcomed me.
Oh sure, Madam! said I.
This vial, said she, will let truth speak
Smoking around your victim!
She laughed; I became a crazy madman
Slowly, opened my purse
Gave her more than a grand
Say, thanks! And left.
And came to my bestfriend,
Removing the vial’s cork;
His breath was overpowered.
For a while, he felt dizzy
I said, Have you ever loved me?
I haven’t, his straight reply.
But at least,the truth has been spoken.
And lies no more linger on my veins.
A response to DAILY PROMPT’s Truth Serum
You’ve been given the opportunity to send one message to one person you wouldn’t normally have access to (for example: the President. Kim Kardashian. A coffee grower in Ethiopia). Who’s the person you choose, and what’s the message?
To John Green, from an avid fan of yours even before the dawn of the Fault in our Stars:
“Maybe okay will be our always.”
Probably everyone who gets to read this open letter knows this quote from your famous novel. Probably they, your readers, were also stuck in every scene described by your words, as if your readers were living in a moment where both Augustus Waters and Hazel Grace Lancaster had lived.
Thank you for writing such a masterpiece.
Honestly, I have read the entire book three times already, but my tears never fail to gather in the corners of my eyes. I saw how cancer patients could perceive love despite the fact that they are ailing and are meant to die soon. And for that, I am constantly reminiscing my days with my old pal, especially those days when we began counting stars, perceiving them to be near, starting to dream about the future.
I pass through charity wards everyday, and whenever I tell the story of Augustus and Hazel, the patients, especially the teens, were amused. I can see their eyes blinking in amazement as they say, “What happened next?”
And for that, thank you for being an inspiration to other cancer patients around the globe — and this fact indeed makes me happy.
Maybe okay will be our always?
Yes. I’m willing my okay to be my always.
In response to Daily Prompt‘s Ready, Set, Done
Our free-write is back by popular demand: today, write about anything — but you must write for exactly ten minutes, no more, no less.
The professor said,
Pass your papers!
In a count of three
One … two.
But sir, I haven’t finished
You’re about to enter a room full of strangers, where you will have exactly four minutes to tell a story that would convey who you really are. What’s your story?
I sat down
For an interview
The breeze, so cold
Touches my hair
I looked around
The panel head
Speaks up, saying
I opened my mouth;
But when word’s uttered,
He speaks again,
I asked, Sir?
Four minutes only. he replied.
Gone into my head.
As I go ahead.
I didn’t hear myself,
Nor the sound of my breath.
I am … I remember.
And finally, they smiled
I now see those teeth
Flourishing white as pearls
Saying, Come back next week.
I said, Sirs?
Welcome to my home
Red carpet’s placed by the door
Welcome to my home
Little do I know
That you’re my brother
And you already have your own daughter
Let her sit on the couch
But let her pee there … never
We knew that you are clever
But you won’t be prevailing ever
This is my home
My house, my whole lot
Welcome to my home
Be now ready to suffer.
I am a Windsor.
Born with great fame and jewels,
Never wished for royalty
But since you desire for it,
Here, the crown is fully yours.
You’re sitting at a café when a stranger approaches you. This person asks what your name is, and, for some reason, you reply. The stranger nods, “I’ve been looking for you.” What happens next?
A day in the year 2030 was full of hectic schedules for my international graduate studies, and once in a while I sit at Café des 2 Moulins in Paris to write my latest untitled novel about somehow a peculiar magical world and the essence of true friendship. When I was at the middle of my writing, the waiter arrived at my table and asked for order. I ordered a cup of espresso coffee and two French breads. The waiter came again, carrying a tray containing my order.
I stayed for two more hours (since I do not have anymore things to do that time). Suddenly, a strange man, came rushing in to the direction of my table.
He began speaking in French quickly that I couldn’t grasp his words. “What’s your name, Mr?” he asked.
“Josue. Josue Mapagdalita.” I replied.
“Your pen name?”
He looked so relieved. “Ugh. I’ve been looking for you.”
I was scared, thinking that this guy was a member of kidnapping syndicate. “Why? What’s the matter?”
“Sorry for scaring you. I just want you to know that our publication company wants your novel be published.”
I was screaming in extreme joy; everyone in the cafeteria heard me and congratulated me afterwards. In excitement, I fainted and was brought back to my dormitory.
I woke up. It’s still 2014. Stranger, I’m much more excited now to meeting you. ‘Till we meet again — but not in just a dream.
Locked and Sealed
Can you keep a secret? Have you ever — intentionally or not — spilled the beans (when you should’ve stayed quiet)?
One day, when I and my friend were walking down a lengthy pavement leading to their house, we talked about several stuff, which include romantic relationships. A question and an answer led from one thing to another, until he accidentally said that he loves someone.
“Who is she?” I said.
“None of your business.” He replied.
“Oh, come on dude. Trust me.” I ended.
Trust me. The imperative was probably convincing enough for him to open up about his “someone’s” name.
“But don’t tell her that there’s an “us” between me and her or that we have a relationship. This is a top secret bro. Or else, if she knows about this soon, we will break up.”
I laughed terribly. But due to his mischief and threats, I swore not to reveal his secret anytime soon. “All right. I promise.”
Two weeks later from his awesome, breath-taking revelation, I met that “someone” who makes his heart flutter. It was lunch time, and I sat beside her, not planning to reveal his secret.
Let’s name the girl as Anna. She is not your typical beautiful campus crush, but she is somehow cute. But at least I am (and was) cuter than her.
Anna and I were close friends too. We had a conversation about my first love and my academic standing, my current write-ups and other sorts of things I did the day before.
Unfortunately and annoyingly, my tongue slipped, and said that my friend (the guy) was in love with her and that they were “in a relationship.”
At first, Anna thought that I was just kidding. I said that no, I am not. Finally, she was convinced.
She stared at me in my eyes and sipped from her orange juice. “Well, I like him too. If he’s willing to work it out, we’ll make it happen.”
And when she said that, I felt somehow a sense of redemption.
Three months after, my friend courted Anna. They officially, at last, became in a relationship.
They broke up during their first anniversary. Yeah, that’s sad.
But it’s funny to remember how awkward it was to feel the anxiety resulted from accidentally spilling the beans. Yet, after that big revelation, I never told anybody about someone’s secrets again, making the phrase Trust Me as a central imperative principle in my life. And to whoever who gets to read this, you can always trust me. Your secrets will be safe in my cabin.
You’ve been granted the power to predict the future! The catch — each time you use your power, it costs you one day (as in, you’ll live one day less). How would you use this power, it at all?
I will try not to be hypocrite. No. I won’t be.
I will use the power for only 365 days. And that is to figure out when will be my death. For example, if my vision says that I will die at exactly 70 years old, then by subtracting 1 year due to the power, I will have 69 years left. God, 69 is definitely a HOLY number!
Wait, why am I so witty at this late hour?
I’ll try to be serious now.
Given the power, I will figure out if my country, the Philippines, has already been part of the first world countries. Yeah, I know I’ll face death first before that happens — but who knows what will happen after five centuries? Or probably to know if China has already transferred to Mars, creating their own civilization (no pun intended).
Probably, I can use my power to know if I will graduate from the university on time or not.
Or if my worst enemy has finally been mummified in the Egyptian pyramids.
Daily Prompt: If money were out of the equation, would you still work? If yes, why, and how much? If not, what would you do with your free time?
But true happiness revolves.
And everyone loves working
For the sake of a few pennies.
Yet several realize
Their sweat weren’t paid off
Then releasing stress
From gnawing pain.
My blood pours
With hours of lecture
With eating numbers
And leaving to school.
Now I sweep frustrations
Through writing prose
Or essential blogging.
If I earn while I learn
without thinking of work,
I’ll share my talent first
So that the world may know.
We sharpshoot and zoom. We capture light through either the standard or the long lens and process it to be a beautiful, visually appealing creation. We urge danger to chase us as we proudly wear a weapon of great value anywhere or around the campus, facing trails, looking for adventures.
Honey May is one of my best of friends. She was once a typical high school girl who was hideously being courted and admired by a variety of boys. (If she knows that by herself, I do not know.) She is undoubtedly computer literate, knowing a lot of stuff other than Microsoft applications, while I, until now, am still stuck with silly, time-consuming computer games and endless basics. She belonged to a cream section just as me, but of course, without any pretense, I am in a way smarter than her.
We are exact opposites, and we share something in common — talents.
She sings; so do I, but my voice has a perfect echoing only inside our bathroom. She writes; so do I: she writes fiction, while I enjoy non-fiction much more. She captures photographs, so do I; but in this case I can say I am her master, and she is my sidekick. Ah! Wait, we were both bullies, as far as I remember.
If we share things other than the aforementioned, I do not know. If she dislikes me featuring her with this article, I do not care. We treat each other harshly so to speak, because in a contrasting fact we are silent plastics in the presence of our beloved enemies.
It was her whom I learned how to cut classes. I remember it was during the Filipino time in our last year in high school when we did that. We escaped when we got bored and made a journalism activity as a pretext to our teacher. If the guidance counselors of our school will get to read this, please do not hold our certificate of good moral character. I am truly begging you; we are still good kids, simply enticed with the very idea of eradicating boredom.
It was her who struggled with me when I was suffering from heartache. That moment in Speech Laboratory when I cried so hard after being ‘friend-zoned’ and when she was comforting me in her arms, I laughed terribly and crazily like a mad man. It was her who patiently became my sidekick in stalking a guy in high school. (Yes, I am gay; she must be a lesbian. No, she as a lesbian is a big joke.) She once knew the “Ten Thousand Bitchy-Foul Words” and she had recited it with all her heart. However, this personality had changed since we both entered different universities: she is now attending church services regularly and promises to refrain from saying bad language. If she will be a nun or be called as “Sister/Mother Honey May” someday, I won’t anymore wonder.
Honestly, I do not like the idea of her being my sidekick. We are both differently stupid in several ways. I’ll call her a comrade instead.
Daily Prompt: Take a look at your bookcase. If you had enough free time, which book would be the first one you’d like to reread? Why?
“I’ve always loved you, and when you love someone, you love the whole person, just as he or she is, and not as you would like them to be.” — Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina
I am busy with schoolworks these past few days, and reading thick, hardbound books seems to be difficult. When I’m bored, i sneak a book at the back of our designated classroom and simply read a literary piece while listening to the professor’s lecture. To make it short, I multi-task and begin rereading Anna Karenina, a classic masterpiece written by Leo Tolstoy. I was only able to read it once and the reason why I want to reread it is that I wish to create a book review of this. I was also amazed of how Tolstoy described aristocrat women during his time and of how he laid his own foundations of morality, emphasizing also on every individual’s faith, therefore making me check this book over and over again. The very sight of the cover of the book tempts me to read the entire thing over and over again!
Daily Prompt: A literary-minded witch gives you a choice: with a flick of the wand, you can become either an obscure novelist whose work will be admired and studied by a select few for decades, or a popular paperback author whose books give pleasure to millions. Which do you choose?
Yes, you read it right — a witch. Not a typical one who had once poisoned Snow White with an apple. And of course, not your filthy stepmother or your strict, toxic professor.
Then, in a flick of her glittery wand, she turned me from a frustrated novelist to a successful one. She gave me two choices; the first is to make me an obscure novelist whose works are being studied in Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and the second one is to instill in me a writer of books that will inspire thousands of wizards, including Harry Potter.
Which one will I choose? The second one, of course.
Honestly, if I pick the first option, there’s a little chance to earn money … and I never wanted to be studied by scholars. Meanwhile, I always wished to be an inspiring young novelist to millions of readers, and I wish to earn profit from my writing as well.
Thank you, bookish witch then. I hope you won’t send me a curse for this great favor.
Daily Prompt: You wake up one day and realize you’re ten years older than you were the previous night. Beyond the initial shock, how does this development change your life plans?
Wrinkles and other signs of aging: You could be a sweet dream or a beautiful nightmare.
Well, the statement above in italics is in the tune of Beyonce’s Sweet Dreams. Right now, I am only seventeen — an age signifying my innocence. No, not innocence really since I’ve been submerged into different kinds of experiences, which I guess made me more mature than who I am before.
Being ten years older than you are the day before may sound favorable to everyone. Well, I guess it may sound the same for me. If it will turn out nicely, of course, my dreams would definitely come true, like pursuing a graduate school or being a published writer. I could be more responsible in handling duties. My parents probably would have already established a business, profiting from our success. And perhaps finding true love?
Guess what, how could a nightmare be beautiful? Isn’t it ironic?
For a nightmare, or certainly a curse, let’s add to the list: slow metabolism that makes us grow fat. I don’t want yet to be an official contestant of the Biggest Loser reality show or something or to be a powerful contender of Sumo wrestling in Japan. Another thing is that when you get rich and famous, strangers in your life will suddenly become your immediate family members. Oh, how dare you.
Either way I don’t wanna wake up from you
Yes, I don’t want to wake up that way: it doesn’t matter to me if it’s a miracle or a curse. Big changes never arrive in our lives just in a snap of a finger. Life is full of uncertainties; unexpected things may happen in a span of a decade. For now, I am contented with my pimples and I definitely won’t let them grow into large tomatoes.
Daily Prompt: When was the last time you experienced writer’s block? What do you think brought it about — and how did you dig your way out of it?
When a person is writing something and eventually has been stuck in some point, making him or her stop putting more and more words in a piece he or she has started, this is commonly known as a Writer’s Block.
I’m stuck or I’m running out of words. Honestly yes, I’ve been there and said these for not only once or twice, but also for a hundred times, I suppose. This is one of the big circumstances wherein a writer will be given a chance to grow; hence he or she will need an ice pick to deliberately chop down or remove the ice that blocks the ideas in every neuron of his or her brain.
Unfortunately, after writing the previous paragraph, I am now experiencing this gruesome scenario. Well, I’m just kidding.
I remember back then when it was my fourth year in high school, also the same time when I became the sports editor and photojournalist of our school organ, I had always a hard time writing articles because of the following:
I believe that the ideas in our head are like water … and once they froze, they block the other arriving essential ideas. We all have an ice pick — different ways to destroy the ice — for example, getting inspiration from other writers or from your loved ones in order to continue writing. Or we may have the choice to let the ice melt, such as listening to our preferred music or simply, by sleeping and finding relief from stress.
I remember you. I remember every time you put your feet on the wheels of your bicycle while I was at your back, scared that I might fall and meet an accident down the road. I remember the popular songs we sing together, how you tried to teach me to dance along with the tune. I remember that night when you helped me climb my way to your house’s roof, and as we count all the stars, you told me your dream to be a pilot and your first flight, and though things are uncertain, I started dreaming about mine too. I was ten years old back then, and you were two years older than me. You were the first one to know my deepest, unearthed secrets. Until now, you are like a big bro to me, and that fact resonates in my heart and my mind everyday.
But sadly and unfortunately, you laid your own body inside a coffin and gave up your own flight.
At first, remembering you was indeed uneasy, and I found myself agitated as your face flashes into my vision. I felt anger and kept my silence about your very existence, about our friendship.
But now, my friend, I’m deliberately understanding the words you instilled in me. Now, whenever I remember you, whenever I cherish those moments, I feel sudden joy, even for just a few seconds, each time I feel down. I had promised to you before that when I fall in love for the first time and if that person reciprocates my love, we will scatter your ashes along the seashore, which is the fulfillment of your dream. I am truly sorry for not being able to fulfill such solely because the second requirement of my promise wasn’t even attained.
I will not be a pilot, just like you wanted to be for yourself. Like what I said to you before: we have our own paths to follow. I’ll be making my own flight towards my dream — a dangerous yet an adventurous one. Just like pilots, before commanding an airplane, who undergo training, a person who wants to be someone else in the future needs exposure and experience.
And that is what I’m doing. I wanted to be a writer, a medical doctor, a mathematician or a scientist, and I don’t care where these paths will lead me. But even though your breath don’t anymore contribute to the endless cycle of nature, I swear that I will continue your flight by directing mine.
I remember you. I feel your presence as I see a bike going down the dirty streets and as I get scratches and wounds whenever I try to learn how to run its pedals. I still sing those songs we sing in the kitchen or on the rooftop, and it was like I am traveling back in time, singing high notes of our favorite Boyband’s songs and even that of Michael Jackson’s. Warmth embraces me whenever I watch stars twinkle during a long night, remembering your dream, your first flight, and different possibilities.
Thanks for being my bestfriend. Thanks for letting me take over your plane. Enjoy the ride and be my passenger for a while.
Daily Prompt: Remember the seven cardinal sins? You’re given the serious task of adding a new one to the list — another trait or behavior you find particularly unacceptable, for whatever reason. What’s sin #8 for you? Why?
Deception (The Eighth Sin): A Haiku
A man seeds deceit
Grows as he is not to be
The meaning of my haiku is that deception has been a rampant sin among us humans, though we sometimes fail to notice it. Some of us have duplicate versions of ourselves, which then made us harvest unripe fruits, such as fake friendships and broken homes. The more we commit deceit, the more we show others the less of our positive personality and more of our negative character. Thus, we all should unmask deception so that people would know who and what we really are in order to establish good relationship with others.