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Wednesday, July 28, 2021


by Jonel Abellanosa

How much more weight
should you lift off our poverty
of belief, how much more heavy lifting
before we know ours is the golden
heart we lost before birth?
We pine, nostalgic for the home
we never knew, strangers to our own
archipelago. The beauty we see hidden
in plain sight, stolen long before
we’re old enough to question.
Long our memory of plunder,
recall homeless when the monsoon
season rages. We’re too preoccupied
to remember. How much the dearest
question we learn to ask, dear
as restless days at a high cost, heaven-high
anxiety we can’t wrap to give our children.
How much, how much more? Enslaved
to more, we open our chests, shocked
our hearts have been stolen.
Nor do we have the chest to live by
during months when rain drains all warmth.
How many of us don’t know you emerged
victorious against the heavy burden?
How many of us are still searching
for the heart that elsewhere beats
the way living in comfort beats and makes us
hear music, the pursuit of happiness
a birthright equal not just for the few?
For the shortlasting you found our hearts.
For a moment
wear it
like a medal
for us

Jonel Abellanosa lives in Cebu City, The Philippines. His poetry and fiction are forthcoming in The Cape Rock and Poetry Salzburg Review and have appeared in hundreds of magazines including The New Verse News, Thin Air, Chiron Review, The Lyric, Poetry Kanto, and The Anglican Theological Review and have been nominated for the Pushcart, Best of the Net and Dwarf Stars prizes. His poetry collections include Songs from My Mind’s Tree and Multiverse (Clare Songbirds Publishing House, New York), 50 Acrostic Poems (Cyberwit, India), In the Donald’s Time (Poetic Justice Books and Art, Florida), and Pan’s Saxophone (Weasel Press, Texas). He is a nature lover, with three companion dogs, and three other beloved dogs who have passed on beyond the rainbow bridge. He loves all animals.