Ang Libro ni Maria

Niadto mi ni Maria sa isa niya ka kwarto nga puno ug libro, kada estante nga nagtindog kay puno gyod morag posporo sa usa ka sudlanan nga bag-ong palit. Grabe akong kalipay labi na pareha miganahan mobasa. 

 “Neng, pangita na ug libro nga gusto nimo basahon,” ingon niya ug ningisi. Naa siyay gikuha nga libro sa kilid ug nilingkod sa dako nga lingkuranan. Mitutok rako niya samtang hinay-hinay niya giabrihan ang libro sa tunga niini ug gisimhot.

“Ahh. Humota, uy! Ganahan sad ka musimhot ug libro, Neng?”

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báyot n. 1 sissy¹. 2 male homosexual².

source: A Dictionary of Cebuano Visayan, by John U. Wolff

¹ Gisumbag ko ni Papa kay hinhin daw ko molihok. Ana siya di daw kini angayan para nako nga iyang bugtong anak nga lalaki. Unsa na lang daw ingnon sa iyang mga kompare (nga mga palahubog ug bahog ilok)? Maayo na lang dawat ko ni Mama. Unsaon ba uroy pagpagahi og nilihokan oy? Wala man nako na tuyo-a kon ganahan ko molakaw pina-Pia Alonzo Wurztbach ba. Ay, Catriona Gray diay.

Idol jod nako na sila ay. Kabalo ko sa akong kaugalingon, nga pareho nila, aduna koy kapadulngan sa akong kinabuhi. Silver lining ba, matod pang Catriona. Nga dili lang matanggong akong kinabuhi isip mamaligya-ay og bulad sa Cogon. Not that I’m complaining, apan naa pay mas dakong mahitabo angay para nako. I could feel it! Nga akong pangandoy nga mahimong English teacher mas mohatag og kahulogan sa akong kinabuhi. Dili lang para nako, para pod sa akong matudloan puhon. Pak! “Beauty with a purpose” ba! Ganern!

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A Boy, Inarticulate

When Jeremy’s godmother and god brother arrived at the Rosaleses’ house on an unbearable summer afternoon in April, it was not only to say hi.

It was summer break, and Jeremy was up on a high branch of the mango tree in their backyard. He liked climbing there because of the cooler, fresher air. When the tricycle stopped in front of his house, he watched as a middle-aged woman stepped out of the sidecar, followed by a tall young man. He heard the guy’s voice first before seeing his face, which was partially hidden by a cap. “It’s hot here, Ma,” he complained, then unfastened the top two buttons of his polo. His mother nodded in agreement and asked him to take the valise down from the tricycle’s burning roof.

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Taglunod, Tagsunog

The First Arcology

When they had begun building the arcology it didn’t have a name. Many had not heard the word before, did not know the origins, and their minds fashioned an Ark of incredible size. It was beyond language and therefore beyond imagination. 

They were the dreamers with means. They wanted to dream their way out of the impending doom that came with the floods that always every year seemed to grow higher and higher, scorning every tired, inadequate effort to tame them. They had cast their dreaming eye upon the dark, clogged rivers and the worn cement of sinking cities, saw the cobbled houses on stilts with their patchwork roofs that lined the waterways and sewers and said We will make for them a new kind of city to unburden the old. When they closed their dreaming eyes they saw the arcology, able to feed itself and power itself, an organism not unlike a tree, needing nothing else but good land and the cooperation of all its parts, ready to survive into the new age. 

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The Ticket

Boys grow up to be men. And it’s men who cause all the trouble. They’re the ones who shed the blood and poison the earth.” – Stephen King, Sleeping Beauties

ONE SUNDAY MORNING, the world woke up without women. No man really knew what happened. Were they abducted by aliens? Were they all kidnapped by a mogul? A male news anchor on TV screamed, “We’re happy the transgenders and intersex who are biological glitches are gone but where the hell did our wives go?” News on the Internet kept announcing reward money from Caucasian men for any one with leads as to where their wives and children have gone. Even the male presidents and prime ministers did not know where their wives went or where they have taken their children. One Sunday morning, the world woke up without women. Of course, wherever the women go, the children go with them. 

As to Rolando Magsaysay, a Filipino with a sound mind and body at age of 35 years old, his world suddenly become at a standstill. He woke up expecting her wife and children at the dining table waiting for him to join their breakfast. Instead, he found the house empty. There was no laughter and heavy steps from their seven-year old daughter Charo and his three- year old son Gabrielle. There was no kitchen smelling like pancakes and coffee. There was no one but him. 

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