Nanunubig ang aking mga mata habang pinagmamasdan ang aking kaharap.


Ilang taon na ang nagdaan ngunit sariwa pa rin ang kagulumihanan sa aking isip. Subalit sa pagkakataong ito, batid ko na.

“Ang ganda at guwapo naman ng dalawa mong kasama. Mukhang mahal na mahal ka nila.”

Dahan-dahan kong niyakap ang litratong natagpuan ko sa likod ng teleponong hiniram ko kay mama— ang matandang babae na umampon sa akin.

Isinulat ni:
Dandave Gonzales

Ang Gurong Manlalakbay

Siya si Binibining Doray. Isa siya sa paborito kong guro sa Mababang Paaralan ng Apolinario Mabini. Mahusay siyang magturo, sumayaw at higit sa lahat magaling magkwento tungkol sa mga lugar na kanyang napuntahan.

Isa siyang gurong manlalakbay. Kung walang pasok o bakante ang kanyang oras nakahanda na siya at ang kanyang paboritong dilaw na bag na may disenyong pusa upang maglakbay.

Nariyang ikwento niya sa amin ang pinakamaliit na libro na nakita niya, ang pinakamalaking sapatos na halos kasya ang tatlumpong tao, ang mga magagandang tanawin na kaakit-akit sa mata at mga masasarap na pagkain sa bawat lugar na narating niya.

Naalala ko ang kwento niya sa aralin namin tungkol sa mga yamang lupa, ipinakita niya sa klase ang iba’t ibang uri ng anyong lupa na kanyang napuntahan, manghang-mangha kaming lahat sa mga larawang ipinakita niya.

Nariyan ang mga bundok na makikita sa Benguet, ang Bundok Pulag ang pangalawang pinakamataas na bundok sa Pilipinas, ang Bundok Ulap na gustong gustong akyatin ng mga turista dahil abot kamay nila ang mga ulap kapag sila ay nasa tuktok at ang Bundok Kalugong na may korteng sombrero na kung aakyatin ay makikita ang buong lambak ng La Trinidad na tinaguriang Salad Bowl ng Pilipinas.

Bilib din kami sa lakas niya nang akyatin niya ang Bundok Pinatubo sa Zambales at ang pinakamaliit na bulkan sa Pilipinas, ang Bulkang Taal sa Batangas. Hindi nakaramdam ng takot si Binibining Doray ng pasukin nila ng mga kaibigan niya ang kuweba ng Capisaan, ang pinakamahabang kuweba sa Pilipinas na matatagpuan sa lalawigan ng Nueva Viscaya. Mahirap daw ang pagpasok doon dahil madulas, maputik at maraming mga maliliit na butas na kailangang gumapang para daanan ang mga ito, pero para sa kanya ay balewala ang mga iyon dahil sa ganda ng mga hugis ng mga bato sa loob ng kuweba.

Marami pang kwento sa amin si Binibining Doray tungkol sa mga lugar na kanyang napuntahan. Lagi niyang ipinapaalala sa amin na sa bawat lugar na pupuntahan ay kailangang igalang ito at ang mga taong nakapaligid dito.

Sa tuwing aking naririnig ang mga kwento ng paglalakbay ni Binibining Doray ay ginagawa ko itong inspirasyon upang sa paglaki ko ay aking tatahakin at mapuntahan ang mga lugar na kanyang ikwinento sa amin.

Dasal ko sa Panginoon na bigyan siya ng lakas upang mapuntahan niya ang mga iba pang tanawin na kanyang ibabahagi sa amin. Iyan si Binibining Doray, ang guro kong manlalakbay.

Isinulat ni:
Jaquiline N. Chomawin

Just Like Mom – The Last Fight

Trigger warning: Death

The door creaked as I entered our home, or it’s better to say our house. House is very different from home, we all know that. I only knew home before. Not now.

“I’m home.”

I announced even though I know that no one will care. I went directly to the kitchen. Nothing was prepared for dinner. It’s 9:00. I shrugged and opened the refrigerator. I scanned the content and get strawberry jam and some of the loaf bread. I didn’t bother to get a plate. I ate in front of the refrigerator. Letting my body feel the coldness coming from the ref.

Something like a broken glass came to my ear. And then a loud thud on the door, when I peaked, I saw my father walking fast, taking the steps of the stairs two at a time.

“You bastard! Go to hell! Burn in hell with her!!!”

My mother’s hysterical at the same time angry words followed my father.

“It’s none of your business you rotten pig!”

My father barked back at her. I’m kinda starting to get used to it they are always having fight for almost a year now I heard my mother talking about mistress and then AIDS. And other stuff that I don’t understand much. I am to graduate from high school this coming April and I have so many assignments.

Before, I do cry when they are fighting like this. But they don’t seem to care if I’m afraid or what so I started not to care about their fights too.

“Damn you! How dare you call me a rotten pig now! Get out of this house!”

My mother shouted again.

“This is my house! You cannot send me out! You get out of this house, NOW!!”

My father angrily shouted too as he stopped in the middle of the stair. A flower vase almost hit him, next is a picture frame, box… all from my mother. I closed the kitchen door and locked it. I went back to refrigerator and get more edible stuff and paraded them on the table.

My backpack which I’m still carrying landed on the floor. I opened it and fished my pen, book and notebook. Maybe tonight, kitchen is my bedroom. It’s better on with my assignment. I can still hear the shouts and crushing of things, but muffled his time.

My instinct woke me up at six am. I was able to fix my things and keep it in my bag again. I ran to open the kitchen door. Mess is everywhere but I didn’t mind. I headed to my room to take a quick bath. No sign of my mother and father. Maybe they stopped fighting, for now.

I brushed my hair, wear my clean uniform and was ready to go. I knocked at my parent’s door to tell mom or dad that I am off to school.

“Mom, I’ve got to go, I need extra money for the field trip that I am talking about last time. Mom? Dad? I’ll open the–”

It was not locked. I opened it and enter. Mess. Broken glasses. It was one of their worst fights. The bed is empty.

“Mom? Dad?”

Maybe my dad went away but my mother will surely be here. I checked the veranda and headed for the comfort room. The shower is on. Probably she’s not taking a bath. I saw her many times sitting under the shower and just cry. She loves dad so much, I can say. Maybe, she’s crying under the shower again.

“Mom, I need some–”

I froze as I entered the comfort room. My mother is under the shower; yes she is, with her night gown on. Except that I have the feeling that she is not ok. She is not sitting; she is lying on the tiled floor. And the water raining from the shower is trying to wash the blood that is continuously flowing from her…hand?

Blood, everywhere. My scream filled the room. I shouted and called my mom again and again and again. The sight of blood is turning my stomach upside down, and her eyes are horribly looking at me my father came and was horrified too, he put me out of his way and called for the ambulance. He went beside mom.

“Jesus! She’s not breathing!”

He said and looked at me. He probably read something in my eyes that held his stare with mine. My mouth opened but there were no words. I want to tell him that he killed mom! I know he did! And Stella too, the girl they are fighting about over and over again. I felt my tears flowing before I lost my consciousness.

I did not attend our graduation day. I just stayed in my room.

Since she died. I told my father that I don’t want to study college. I didn’t enroll. Just stay in my room. He is trying to convince me but since the day that mom died, or commit suicide or murdered, I avoided him. Mom loves him so much. I know. But he just didn’t love her back. I know.

I spent most of my time alone in my room. Stella moved in to our house right after my mother’s death anniversary.

This is one of the night that I am just staring at the ceiling and feeling the thin blade in my hand. The police said that this is the one that mom used to cut her wrist. I hide it and have been talking to it ever since.

My father will come home late tonight. I heard him telling Stella that he will attend some meeting while they are kissing over breakfast. My father doesn’t care about me anymore. He finally listened to Stella’s “don’t mind your hard-headed daughter”.

I want to hate him for that. But I can’t coz mom love him, I know. He just didn’t love her back. I slipped the blade in my pocket and walked to dad and Stella’s room. I entered quietly.

“Jesus! You scared me!”

Stella gasped as she saw me sitting in their bed. She just got out from the bathroom. Her eyes squinted at me. She’s always afraid in the way that I look at her.

“What are you doing here??”

“You’re beautiful Stella.” I said to her. “Do you want me to comb your hair?”

I asked her, sounding jolly for the first time since mother died.

“No. Get out.” She answered and sat in front of the mirror.

“C’mon Stella, I want us to be friends. And I want you to be just like mom.”

I said sounding more serious and sweet. She started putting lotion in her skin.

“I have a gift for you Stella.”

“My birthday was last week.” She snob me.

“Belated, mommy… I want you to be like my mom.” She stared at me through my reflection in the mirror and took a sigh.

“Ok. What is it?” I smiled at her, wide, very wide that if only she paid a little more attention, she can see it as diabolically wide.

“Close our eyes please.”

“If this is nothing good, I will tell this to your father and I’ll make sure that he will punish you, ok?”


I ran beside the bed, and looked at her, she closed her eyes. I carefully get the baseball bat that my mom bought me before.

“It is something you will love Stella. And dad too, so close your eyes still and no peaking. In count of five.”

I walked behind her, she’s sitting. As I said the word ‘one’ I gave her head a killing blow. ‘two’ and again.

She landed screaming on the floor but I continue on counting, hitting her with my baseball bat every after my count. I reached thirty. She’s bloody and semi-unconscious. My bat is bloody too. I started to feel nausea again. Just like when I saw mom. She’s saying something, trying to stop me, begging me.

I drag her to the bathroom. Hitting her whenever I want to. I started loving the sight of flowing blood from her head. I put her under the shower and turned it on. It took all of my strength but I was able to do it. My mouth muscles voluntary smiled and I found myself laughing hard while looking at her.

She’s not moving now. The tiled floor is bloody. She’s lying on the floor. Just like mom! I laughed even harder and took the blade from my pocket, the water raining from the shower is starting to wash her blood now.

I held her wrist and cut it with the blade, very deep. A cut to kill. More blood flowed out of her.

And there she is, just like my mom

Stella used to open the door for dad. Three knocks. I opened the door. Father almost jumped.

“Angel!! Why do you have blood on your shirt??! Where is Stella.”

I looked at him the way I looked into his eyes when she found mom dead.

“She is in the bathroom. She’s not breathing now. Just like mom.”

I answered. My father’s eyes widened with horror. He ran past through me and entered the bathroom.

Too late she’s bleeding for three hours now, with her two wrists cut deep, under the shower. Just like mom. And everything went black.

Written by:
Regine Aguilar
Sta. Maria Integrated High School

Excerpts and Unshed Love

“He’s starting to care for her as a pen to its paper. But the pen is always afraid to commit mistakes. So he instead chose not to write even a single to the paper in order to preserve its purity.”

He liked her from the very start they met. He’s holding a camera that time while she is modeling in the stage with the crowd cheering. After that, he asked her for a picture in the backstage. And then everything started.

They started changing thoughts and sharing perspectives in life. They started jiving with the same principle. He also started helping her with her minor problems in school.

It’s happy and sad as they get more time for each other. He also started feeling the particular fear inside him. She is a good driven person when it comes to her studies and telling her that he’s starting to care and love her more than he’s allowed to could be destruction. And end of their good times together.

He tried to look as if everything is normal between them every day. He tried to avoid things that will bring up what he truly feels for her. He prepared his self for consequences.

And then the time when they have to part their ways came. He graduated first, went away and tried to carve his real life, without fairy tales.

That was eight years ago. Now, he’s stable and everything about his dreams turned into reality. Part of it is seeing her in a beautiful wedding gown. But the sad part is that he’s not the one waiting at the altar.

He is standing outside the church and savoring his cigarette. He’s not supposed to be here but he wanted to see her even if it will sting like hell. And he deserves it. He never told her.

It’s not that she’s been his inspiration in making his goals turn into reality, but still, she is the missing part. And she will always be his missing part as he heard the exchange of “I dos.”

He blew the smoke in the air and went into his car. Maybe, just maybe, he will be able to write “Hey Rich” again, someday.

Written by:
Regine Aguilar
Sta. Maria Integrated High School

Sabi ni Mama

Noong bata pa ako, lagi kong naaabutang nag-aaway sina mama at papa pero maya-maya nama’y nagbabati rin. Minsan pa nga’y, nagsasalita sila ng mga hindi ko maintindihan. Kaya naman, hindi ko mapigilang magtanong nang maabutan si Mama, isang araw, habang nagluluto.

“Mama, anong ibig sabihin ng yawa?” kunot noo siyang tumingin sa’kin.

“Saan mo naman narinig ‘yan?” tanong niya.

“Sabi mo kay papa ‘yawa ka!’? sabi ko.

Umiling siya saba’y sabing “Wala ‘yon! Huwag ka ngang nakikinig sa usapan namin! Maglaro ka na lang doon sa labas!”

Hindi na ako nakaangal pa. Mabilis lumipas ang panahon.

Ngayong malaki na ‘ko, alam ko na ang ibig sabihin nun.

Lagi ko ngang sinasabi iyon sa mga ex-girlfriend ko tuwing nag-aaway kami para sana magkabati, pero bigla na lang silang hindi na nagpaparamdam o ang iba naman ay minumura pa ako.

Haaaays, ang gulo talaga ng mga babae!

Isinulat ni:
Lyn Lois Ong
Maximo L. Gatlabayan Memorial National High School