POETRY: Reading Poets

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At a poetry reading

(my first time attending),

I sat listening…

And, oh boy, was it interesting!


Wordsmiths amateur and senior,

one or two an award winner,

gave a sampling of their ware

and bits of their soul laid bare.


On trivia so personal, some emoted,

leaving me largely mystified…

One had me bemused and baffled

with semantic gymnastics that bedazzled.


There were those that had me smiling

with their take so entertaining

on events simple and mundane

such as a power outage and coffee drinking.


There likewise was touching lamentation

on some aspect of the social condition

and the reality of human misfortune

that somehow triggered a sense of frustration.


And then there was this long-haired bearded firebrand

who discoursed of Red fighters and of mujahideen in Basilan

and exhorted to turn ink drops into liberating ammunition,

almost moving me to raise a clenched fist, angry and defiant.


But there also was this lady with her hair grayed

simply saying a gentle goodbye to a departed comrade

and appreciating the leisure of reading a book by the poolside,

reminding me of how our generation’s rage has mellowed.


Eric S.B. Libre was among the audience at the poetry reading event on 5 February 2014 during the 1st Mindanao Book Festival at the Ateneo de Davao University. A Mindanawon freelance consultant, he occasionally  dabbles in creative writing, and his short story “Karaang Damang” won the 3rd prize in the 2013 Second Satur Apuyon Tigi sa Mubong Sugilanong Binisaya sponsored by the Davao Writers Guild. He lives in Digos City.  

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