Lunes, Oktubre 17, 2011



Reya Bato

Obscurity veils over the vast land

hiding the tangible before the eyes

it is an illusion, a master of disguise

confounding the mind into discordance.

17th October 2011

A lesson from the fog today:

When our vision is clouded and our mind is in a fog, do not make a move, bide the time, wait until the sun breaks through to see everything clearly and that will be the best time to act.

Sabado, Oktubre 15, 2011



Reya Bato

Lurking in the shadows

you are unaware of my chase

I trail your course

then watch you move

I stick around and wait

upon the moment you are


I will invade.#

15th October 2011

Linggo, Setyembre 11, 2011

Tanka - Pour Honey

Pour Honey

by Reya Bato

Old pages reviewed --

bygone days had been exposed

-- two crushed hearts found out.

Bitterness shrugged off anew,

it’s a forgotten old wound.


Linggo, Agosto 28, 2011

Babala – Magsusuot Ako ng Lila Kung Ako Ay Lipas Na

ni Reya Bato

(Salin sa Warning - When I Am an Old Woman I Shall Wear Purple ni Jenny Joseph)

Magsusuot ako ng lila
kung ako ay lipas na
may ternong sumbrerong
pula na baduy sa panlasa.

Sustento ay sa kandila,
guwantes at serbesa
mapupunta, at sasabihing,
wala ng pera para sa mantikilya.

Uupo sa aspalto kung hapo,
sasabsabin ang mga patikim,
at ang mga alarma ay pipindutin,
ang baston ay sa barindilya
padadaanin , at aking babawiin
ang mga ginawang pagtitimpi
sa nakalipas na sandali.

Sa ulan ay lalabas nang walang
tsinelas, pipitas ng mga bulaklak
sa hardin ng may hardin
at ang pagdura ay papraktisin.

Maari na ring kalimutan ang diyeta
at lumulon ng tatlong librang
longganisa o buong linggong
kumain ng tinapay at atsara.
May rason na rin para mangolekta
ng bolpen, lapis, mani,
at anik-anik sa kahita.

Ngunit sa ngayon, kailangan
munang maging huwaran
sa mga kabataan, manamit
ng kapita-pitagan, at magbasa
ng pahayagan, magbayad ng renta
at hindi magmura at maghanda
ng salo-salo sa mga kakilala.

Ngunit nararapat yatang
ako ay magsanay na
nang hindi na magtaka ang iba
kapag ako ay lipas na at suot ay lila.

28th August 2011

Original Text:

Warning - When I Am an Old Woman I Shall Wear Purple
By Jenny Joseph

When I am an old woman, I shall wear purple
with a red hat that doesn't go, and doesn't suit me.
And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves
and satin candles, and say we've no money for butter.
I shall sit down on the pavement when I am tired
and gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells
and run my stick along the public railings
and make up for the sobriety of my youth.
I shall go out in my slippers in the rain
and pick the flowers in other people's gardens
and learn to spit.

You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat
and eat three pounds of sausages at a go
or only bread and pickles for a week
and hoard pens and pencils and beer nuts and things in boxes.

But now we must have clothes that keep us dry
and pay our rent and not swear in the street
and set a good example for the children.
We must have friends to dinner and read the papers.
But maybe I ought to practice a little now?
So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.

Huwebes, Agosto 25, 2011

On Silence: Stop Overtalking and Underthinking

On Silence: Stop Overtalking and Underthinking
Reya Bato

One of my favorite fictitious characters in the world of novels is Clara del Valle Trueba, the clairvoyant daughter of Severo and Nivea. It is not her paranormal powers which roused my interest in her character but the idea that at the age of ten, she stopped speaking for nine years. How did she do that when in this noisy world, talking becomes one of the ways to acknowledge that a person really exists? There is a fear of silence in today’s generation. It seems that being silent is being oppressed. Everyone wants to be heard. Just look at the social networking sites, all are talking, worrying, giving their opinion, saying what they have done, what they own, what they are feeling, thinking or doing at the moment. Do they still have time to absorb what they had said?

I like to talk. I, too, am guilty of overtalking and underthinking. There are many situations when someone told me to stop talking and listen first. Many people have been hurt by my spontaneous talking and I experienced being in a soup because of my carelessness.

The Bible has a lot to say about keeping the mouth shut. One of them is Proverbs 21:23 - ‘Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble’. It is likely impossible to speak a lot and not to hurt others, intentionally and unintentionally. The longer we talk, the more insensitive response, unkind word, and gossips we are having. Keeping our mouth and tongue can be used to lessen our vulnerability. The more we become silent, the less impulsive we become. Through silence, we can slow down, genuinely listen, and think. We can have a full awareness of the situation and handle it considerately.


There are many things to say but the best way to summarize them is to remain silent, methinks. #

25th August 2010

Linggo, Agosto 14, 2011

On Yielding – Bend But Do Not Break

On Yielding – Bend But Do Not Break

When I was I child, every time there was a storm in our province, I would always think of the story of the bamboo and the mango tree. There was a part in the story when there came a storm and the haughty mango tree stood proudly against the wind while the bamboo just bent his head and bowed to the wind. When the storm stopped, the mango tree was uprooted but the bamboo was still standing.

Circumstances really always reveal one’s spirit. How you respond to the circumstances that come to your life can either break you or make you strong.

Cliché but true, “the only permanent thing in life is change” ...which means that we have to change as well or we would be like the uprooted mango tree if we go against the wind of change. Be like the bamboo: bend but do not break. Sway harmoniously with the wind of change, do not fight against it. Be deeply rooted (to the will of God) yet flexible and yielding (to obey His will). #

(*Just a thought while walking in office corridor.*)

Reya Bato
14th August 2011
2:55 pm

Lunes, Hunyo 13, 2011

The Rain

The Rain
by Reya Bato

Huffs and puffs, puffs and huffs
the blowing is enough
gray clouds are nigh
darkening the sky.

Spatter, splatter of the rain
on my windowpane.
Slosh, splash, swash
the earth is washed.

Rumble, grumble,
the thunders growl
bar the windows
close the door.

Drops, drops, drops
the rain suddenly stops.
It's misty, it's foggy
outside it's soggy.

At last, the sun peeps
and timidly creeps
breaking through the gray sky
the earth is clear and dry.

© 13th June 2011

Miyerkules, Hunyo 8, 2011

On Waiting

08th June 2011


Waiting is a lifelong career.

As a child, most of us had waited to grow old and enter school then waited to graduate and have a good job. Older, most waited to be married and once married, waited for a birth of a child, and so on and so forth. No one likes to wait but all life is a waiting.

In this busy world, life has taught us that to wait is to be powerless, to be controlled, immobile and helpless. People wait when they have no choice but to... wait. I, who am imprisoned in the miseries of waiting, also believe that waiting is a passive activity -- just watching around and accomplishing nothing.

Last week I was reading the Gospel of Luke which changed the way on how I looked at waiting:

Luke 25-26: Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah.

There was a man who spent his whole life waiting for his foresight to come true. Did he not get tired and become hopeless?

I think he did not. He patiently waited and devoted his life waiting wherefore he knew the day and the time when his dream would come true -- when Christ would arrive in the temple court. Certainly, he waited because there was no other choice but to wait. He wanted to see the Messiah before he died as revealed by the Holy Spirit so he held on to that promise. However, he never waited passively; he spent his days waiting striving to be righteous and devout. It was a pleasant, tingling wait -- his wait was as great as the actualization of his foresight.

Methinks, waiting can have an appetizing quality if one devotes those loathing time of waiting in a yielding and upright way. #


Miyerkules, Mayo 18, 2011

Curiosity of A Child

Curiosity of A Child

Reya Bato

I thank God every time I rise
and get to open my eyes --
A day to discover new surprise
and chance to answer all my whys.

As I watch the bees and butterflies
suck nectar in the flowerbed nearby,
I spread my arms and try to fly.
Why can’t I reach the sky?

As I climb the tree
to look for a nest of little birdies,
I wish I can swing like monkeys
but with tail I will look so silly.

When night comes, I leap home like frog
or roll with my dog like log
then I crawl to my bed like a slug
it’s time to rest with the bed bugs

While lulling myself to sleep
I look at my window to have my last peep
I try to count all the dancing fireflies
then I kiss the moon goodnight.

© 18-May-2011

Linggo, Abril 3, 2011

Tea Bag

Tea Bag

by Reya Bato

I shall remember you

every time I put tea bag

in a hot-water-filled cup.

The rusty brown color

spreads quietly

like the passion

which consumes us.

Its aroma

awakens my senses

bringing me back

in that October night.

And as I sip its warmth,

its bitter-sweetness


the yearning

I have inside

to drink tea again

by your side.

04th April 2011

Lunes, Pebrero 14, 2011

Kung Ako ay Lilimutin Mo

Kung Ako ay Lilimutin Mo

ni Reya Bato

(salin sa 'If You Forget Me' ni Pablo Neruda)

Para kay R...

Hayaan mong ulitin ko

ang bagay na

malaon mo nang alam:

ang aninang ng abuhing buwan,

ang makupad na pag-usad

ng dilim sa labas,

ang pagkatibag ng abo

sa tuwi kong paghipo

o ang gaspang ng kahoy

na nakagatong sa apoy,

lahat ng iyon ay tinatangay

ako sa iyo, animong ang lahat:

ang samyo, ang liwanag,

ang mga metal, ay maliliit

na bangkang naglalayag

patungo sa iyong malilit

na pulo. Ngunit kung

unti-unti ang pag-ibig

mo sa akin ay mapawi,

sa puso ko ay hindi

ka na rin lalagi.

Kung sa isang iglap

ako ay iyong malimot,

huwag mo na akong hanapin pa

sapagkat limot na rin kita.

Kung iyong biglang maisip

na sadyang nakakainip

at nakakasira ng bait

ang paghihintay sa pag-ikit

ng aking buhay papalapit

sa iyo at magpas’ya ka

na ako ay iwan mo

sa pampang na aking pinagmulan,

iyong tandaan, sa oras na iyon

ay dahan-dahan kong ibibitaw

ang aking mga kamay

at lalayo sa iyo. Ngunit kung

sa bawat sandali ay walang

alinlangan mong maramdaman

na ikaw ay sa akin laan,

kung sa bawat araw

ako ang sanhi ng ngiti sa

iyong mga labi, ah aking mahal,

walang mawawala ni mapapawi,

ang pag-ibig ko ay muli’t muling

magniningas, sa mga bisig mo ako

ay hindi aalpas hanggang ang

pagmamahal mo ay hindi kumukupas.

14th February 2011

Original Text:

I want you to know

one thing.

You know how this is:

if I look

at the crystal moon, at the red branch

of the slow autumn at my window,

if I touch

near the fire

the impalpable ash

or the wrinkled body of the log,

everything carries me to you,

as if everything that exists,

aromas, light, metals,

were little boats

that sail

toward those isles of yours that wait for me.

Well, now,

if little by little you stop loving me

I shall stop loving you little by little.

If suddenly

you forget me

do not look for me,

for I shall already have forgotten you.

If you think it long and mad,

the wind of banners

that passes through my life,

and you decide

to leave me at the shore

of the heart where I have roots,


that on that day,

at that hour,

I shall lift my arms

and my roots will set off

to seek another land.


if each day,

each hour,

you feel that you are destined for me

with implacable sweetness,

if each day a flower

climbs up to your lips to seek me,

ah my love, ah my own,

in me all that fire is repeated,

in me nothing is extinguished or forgotten,

my love feeds on your love, beloved,

and as long as you live it will be in your arms

without leaving mine.