Ang Bagong Colosus

Translated into Filipino by Luisa A. Igloria

Two earthquakes all but demolished my home and nearly the entire city of Baguio in the Philippines in 1990; then my father died two weeks after. In fall 1992, I entrusted my young daughters to the care of family when I went to Chicago to start my Ph.D. in English/Creative Writing. So it was that coming to America was fraught with a sense of great loss, even devastation. Eventually, two daughters were able to join me in the US. The diasporic: all of us— including my eldest who remains in Baguio, and my youngest, born in Virginia— continue to work on a tenable idea of love and family and sustenance across distance. How does one even begin to describe how to live in the in-between, to have your heart in more than one place?      

Luisa A. Igloria is a co-winner of the 2019 Crab Orchard Poetry Open competition for Maps for Migrants and Ghosts (Southern Illinois University Press, 2020). She is the author of The Buddha Wonders if She is Having a Mid-Life Crisis (2018) and Ode to the Heart Smaller than a Pencil Eraser (2014 May Swenson Prize). She teaches in the MFA Creative Writing Program at Old Dominion University. www.luisaigloria.com

Di tulad ng tanyag na higanteng Griyego,
Braso at paa nito'y sakop ang maraming lupain;
Sa daanang hinugasan ng dagat at paglubog ng araw,
Isang makapangyarihang babae ay nakatayo at may dalang tanglaw  
Na gawa sa ibinilanggong kidlat, at ang kanyang pangalan
Ay Ina ng Mga Patapón. Ang nagliliwanag niyang kamay
Ay sagisag ng malugod na pagtanggap; banayad ang tingin
Na naghahari sa tulay at sadsaran sa pagitan ng dalawang lungsod.
“Mga lumang kaharian, itago ang ariin at karangyaan!” tahimik na
Anya. “Dalhin sa akin ang mga pagód, mga nasadsád sa kahirapan,
Mga nagsisiksikan at sabik na huminga ng malaya,
Mga kawawa’t ibinasura sa pampang. 
Ihatid sa akin ang lahat na walang tirahan, mga nilusob ng bagyo,
Itataas ko ang aking tanglaw sa tabi ng gintong pintuan!”

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