by Alyza Taguilaso
The truth is all you needed
to do was listen: to the quietest of quarks
I offer nothing but a set of bones
bent in angles foretelling the future.
Maybe furniture — upholstered in the brightest shade
of jaundice the world could procure. Often,
lions would be found lazing
about the city. I know nothing
of what they prefer to do otherwise.
The dodo was last spotted dillydallying
in the afterlife, clueless
as the last of its kind. Water has always had the problem
of where to wash its hair the same way books refuse
to keep silent at night. Always I hear them flapping
their thin wings, flailing and failing to take
flight. They hush the words squirming
inside their bowels. I have seen mud
slowly make its way amidst a hurricane
of monarch butterflies. In my past life I fired a bullet
to the sky. Midway through the stratosphere it decided
to desire an orbit of its own so off it went: spinning
at a speed rivaling stars, all steel and ambition zooming
into that vacuous shell of space beyond. Limbless
and without a mouth, sometimes I wonder
where and what it would be now—
a wavelength, a specter, a muted song sending
pinpricks across a continuum of cones
and planets situated at the center
of solar systems refusing
names, the second coming
of the Big Bang, a god uncreating
its only child. If it had a chance
to speak, would it tell me what it really wanted?
Alyza Taguilaso is in her junior year of medicine at University of the East Ramon Magsaysay Memorial Medical Center, Inc. Her poems have appeared in Paper Monster Press, the Kritika Kultura Anthology of New Philippine Writing in English, and Under The Storm: An Anthology of Contemporary Philippine Poetry. She tends to a hedgehog called Mumu and a fat cat named Serafee. Alyza maintains a writing journal over at Speaking In Hushed Tones.
Photography: adapted from Monarch Butterfly by David Slater.