Propaganda Disguised as a Love Poem Disguised as a Dictionary Entry ~ a poem by Arthur Altarejos

IPA: /ˈtajo/
1. We; us
sample sentence:
Kamay mo sa kamay ko habang naglalakad tayo.
Your hand entwined in mine as we tread on.
IPA: /taˈjoʔ/
Affixes: /pag-, mag-, -uma-, -an/
1. To stand; to rise
sample sentence:
Kahit minsan parang wala namang nagagawa ang pagtayô.
Though sometimes it feels like standing up does nothing.
Tayô tayo
1. Stand with me
sample sentence:
Patuloy na tumatayô tayo sa ilalim ng mga maunos na bituin.
Still you stand with me beneath the stormy stars.
1. (Colloquial) Just us (inclusive only of the speaker, the person spoken to,
and any others who may be specified)
sample sentence:
At sumasayaw, tayo-tayo lang, kasabay ang pagikot ng mundo.
And dance, just us, in step with the lilt of the world.


Arthur Altarejos is a Filipino community organizer, community worker, and poet based in New York City. He was born in Bacolod but claims Manila. He writes about what is lost and gained in translation between Hiligaynon, Tagalog, and English, the languages of his homes. His poetry has been published or will soon be published in Sky Island Journal, Writers Resist, and elsewhere.


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