Two poems by Jeric Tindoy Olay

“Gardenia” by JP Newell (Flickr CC)

Flores de Mayo
Lola would’ve worn her duster and made her
way to the garden. How the cantankerous sun
has rendered the blooms of Rosal
unconstrained! For sure, she would’ve yanked
some and
offered them to her poorly lit altar. Oh, lola, I
would’ve deliberately waited for the petals to turn
yellow. How I’ve missed the Marian smell! I
thought then that when you wear such wonted
scent, the moment you clasp your hands in
prayer, Heaven listens! Lola, I wish you were
here among the flowers of May.

Look at his hands. It seems the ancient earth
has latched its spell on them. But he’s too old to
plant. He’s too old to plant. I couldn’t grasp his
silence, especially at night before he’d close
the jalousies. He’d stare at the stars in the
cloudless sky as if they reminded him of a distant
dream. Maybe in the past, at his hut’s makeshift
bed, he dreamt of these stars during his
afternoon’s doze. And in his dream, the stars
turned into tubers of varied colors: amarilyo,
kahil, ug ubihon. How he assayed to harvest
some in exhange for a gantang of rice!

Jeric Tindoy Olay hails from Macrohon, a small town in the province of Southern Leyte, Philippines. He is a public school teacher. When he does not teach, especially at night and on weekends, he turns his ruminations into poetry. His goal is to publish a collection of poems for his barrio, Ahag (Sto. Niño). His work has appeared and is forthcoming in TLDTD, Philippines Graphic, Mekong Review, Paris Lit Up, The Bayou Review, Nebo Literary Journal, Quadrant Magazine, Acta Victoriana Journal, Poetry Salzburg Review, Ragaire Magazine, and elsewhere. 


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