Thursday, July 30, 2009

Wet Market

Staggering, a rubber slipper missing,
another morning lost to search
among frequent goers. A long passage

to hunger eased with days spent lifting freight
through paths narrow and drenched.

The sweet stench of blood-stained tiles
reeking of various meat and gutted fish
stink clinging to skin and hair.

In the afternoon pools of gray water stir
on grumbling asphalt cracks.

Come and smell of man’s rubbish,
everything left is considered a waste

before retiring the makeshift stalls
over damp, cold floor.

Sunday, July 19, 2009


See this open darkly
recent in the air

a chilling taste of rust
an urge to hold breaths

and hear the roll
of a tongue against
skin eluding mine.

I do not mean hunger
I do not mean to lament
I do not mean complacence

I do not mean to speak
I do not mean reliance
I do not mean to forget

much to last and that is all
there is for the frail.

Thursday, July 16, 2009


“That bitch is insane! I’m damn sure it was him!”

She called me right out of bed that morning. At this day and age, picking up a ringing gadget is now a reflex action. I wasn’t so sure what the hell the other person on the line was talking about until around a minute or so. If you’re like me, you’d be busy making sure it wasn’t one of those dreaming inside a dream states. It’s a streak of odd occurrences, but that’s just how I start my days. I make sure everything is real.

“It was an email with all sorts of made-up shit about me! He’s trying to ruin my career…”

I glanced at the cellphone screen: a quarter past ten, Jenny Francisco. I heard people and a train howl when I put it back against my ear. She must have been calling from the station. That’s when the right side of my head started to ache, like I got run over by a speeding truck along EDSA. I think that was my dream, only I tend to forget.

“Hello, Amber? Are you there?”

“Yeah, yeah. Listen, the line was breaking. You were saying?”

“I said our bitch boss is trying to ruin my career!

“You mean, former boss…”

“He was spreading rumors about me.”

“Oh yeah? Like what?”

“After I resigned, I didn’t realize he was on to me. He told the company I was applying for that I was a lazy-ass manager, always late and wasted at work. Fuckin’ a--”

“Hmm… somehow not surprised he’s doing that.”

“He made-up stuff that I sleep around with clients and had affairs with married men…”

Jen wasn’t always as intense. She would cuss on rare occasions, and this is the third time I’ve heard her say words like that. At the office, if she wasn’t handling calls, sorting magazine hits or making reports, you’d just find her planted in her chair watching videos or chatting online. Walk in to that studio and you’ll see a petite, fair skinned girl in high heels with long wavy hair. She’s hard to miss.

If I were a guy, I’d say it’s quite rare to meet a girl who greets you with a disarming smile. She reminds me of a song I heard somewhere, it went something like ‘everyone harbors a secret hatred for the prettiest girl in the room.’ So, pretty is the keyword. After all, her bitch boss, rather, our former bitch boss wouldn’t have hired her if she wasn’t. That was the god damned job description. I bet you can tell it wasn’t such a great job, certainly not something everyone would enjoy. She says it’s a career she wasn’t meant to live.

After a year of putting up with that superficial, god-forsaken industry, she finally got her act together and decided to leave the company. This is actually her second attempt to resign, and the first one probably made her think twice. Of course, the bitch boss wouldn’t let her go. But this time, it’s a different case. Jen has left the building. And I guess I had everything to do with it.

“So can you help me? I’ll send your email to the company.”

“What? They’re going to ask questions?”

“Just stuff about your experience with me in the company, at least you’ll give real answers.”

“Ok, don’t worry. I’ll help you.”

“Thanks, I owe you big time.”

“Yeah, just take it easy. You’ll find a job, better than the last.”

“Before I forget, don’t tell anyone about this. Don’t give them the impression I know about the rumors.”


“Good. Hey, how are you? Are you working yet?”

“No. Just having the time of my life.”