poison in my glass

Recently, the word “Flint” has been grabbing my eye. One picture I came across was this grand, white water tower with the word FLINT spelled in black bold letters across it. It is a city in Michigan whose primary water source was switched over to the Flint River, which is more of a toxic dump than river. People persistently complained about the water, its uncanny color, its awful taste, but to no avail… no one believed. And it would be many months down the road when officials will finally listen because experts have found lead in Flint’s water, which courses through the veins of children. And this made me furious and sad at the same time so I chose to reflect on this tragic incident through various poems written in poeticalsounds.com

poetical sounds

investigate into these waters…
it is blue, red and clear on good
days; but good days run low like
toilet paper on the market shelves
and all i’m asking is you take a look
because the water seems not from any
spring or lake i know whose color
sometimes mime faint Tang or Jaritos.
no, this liquid mimics sangria i don’t
want to imbibe for the first time.
the tint arouses suspicion and still
insist it is all fresh from tap.
when yesterday’s pipes have been
gurgling blood and each sanguine drop
fills my mouth… the pain is worth a
scream, but you refuse to hear and i’ve
gone for days without a drink; by now,
thirst taunts me, but what can i do
when there is no alternative but
the orange poison in my glass

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i don’t know how to mourn you.
your sudden departure finds me,
at this moment, indecisive; my
rationale scattered like random
playthings spilled from a bin
while i cannot even begin to
fathom what clarity i might
reach in this state of finality…
how can i even conceive a place
without your large eyes that looked
upon me with compassion, so full of
kindness that for one moment i
forget the flaws this world reminds
me constantly i have. i no longer
have you and i don’t know whether
i should hold it in or come apart

© mr gahon 8/28/15

for Ninang Lilay… rest well with God. Thank you for your incredible kindness. I never forgot. And I will never forget.


I am remembering a boy who needed help dying. So much so that he caused such a commotion, brought out cops and their helicopters from their stationary positions to hover over this same boy who just held up one of the local fast food establishment not far from where I live. In the city where I live, this boy no longer lives. Because he taunted and threatened the public with his gun, he no longer lives… shot and killed amidst a confrontation. He leaves behind a suicide note and cash that he gave away willingly after his robbery. He was only seventeen and he just wanted out.

if only i can come in and
take away your pain… did
we not come across each
other at the grocery store,
walked through sliding doors
to purchase a Snickers and a
Pepsi on the same express line?
did i not smile, admire the
skateboard with the skull you
held beside, did not the
similarity of our afternoon
snack stump you for a moment
that there is one just like…
you who are brilliant burried
under all that sand, i’m sorry i
could not extend my empty hand
to reach you from the heft of
your already cumbersome life…
i’m sorry i could not meet you
in time to uplift you, pull you
out of your irrecoverable chasm

-mr gahon 8/21/15

courage… bravery… perseverance

I’m remembering a boy who fought through nine surgeries and survived. On the tenth one, it seemed his body couldn’t take anymore complications. He was only eight months old. He departed from this world just yesternight.

I thought the Pacquiao – Mayweather match would be a great fight, but this boy showed us a greater, incredible fight without any training; he was equipped only with the courage already inside him. I remember him this evening and I am in awe at the gift he left behind. What courage, what bravery, what perseverance… if ever I wondered what these words really meant, with his will, this baby boy has defined it for me.

this almost lifeless body still fights…
don’t give up on me! though destiny is
not far from here, my journey only begins:
in dying, i revive you… courage, bravery,
all. what face i cannot push forth, i must
show through my will… please don’t
underestimate me, i am finishing something
incomplete— i may leave before my time, but
in the time you loved… i loved you more

© mr gahon 6/1/15

risen well

Some days are definitely more difficult than others. Challenges abound; the smallest issues can easily turn into something bigger if we don’t curtail it near its beginning.

because you’re not grander
than my thoughts, I confess—
if only I can, these sinful
thoughts where I don’t want
to hail from, yet so easily
gravity pulls me back that
even as I surface to the top…
I hope I’ve risen well
from the dead

-mr gahon 3/16/15

Beauty Hath Compassion

Everything collapses into one. When someone passes, I can’t help fuse my thoughts about God, beauty and my grandmother and how all seems to be unified. There’s joy and then there’s sadness, though I don’t think the latter is rooted in God. But everything seems to be same somehow, each one intricately put together as though there aren’t any dimensions at all, only one smooth plane.

beauty hath compassion
upon the dead and saddened
eye; these daffodils stare
blankly into the sky and
when sullen, ornery rain
comes down… where it leaks,
my tongue shall catch
every last drop of mercy
to pardon this stench and
solid mess; cleanse me
from the stains that derail
my faith upon the grandeur
of this earth underneath
careless feet racing with
laughter— I behold this
world in a tight embrace,
I won’t let you go

-mr gahon 1/20/15

Lola, a Grandmother

How we remember anyone really is momentary. They travel in and out of our minds like weary sojourners of this world. It is an unexpected thought, their face across the vast screen in our heads, as perfect as any. An ideal pictorial even if we know what age and time has done to their bodies.

Briefly, I remember everything even from a distance. The influence of a loved one who is part of my memory forever. Her unrelenting devotion to God was admirable and this was her legacy. A grandmother who took to the rosary as though the beads were extensions of her fingers, reciting them day and night until she could no longer; she attended church until she could no longer and then, finally, in the confines of her home, in a rocking chair, she seemed forever in meditation. Not once did she allow that hold on God to loosen. And in the end, God would have her be taken care of with dignity, love and respect… how we all ideally would like to be taken care of. My grandmother lived in a humble home, but spiritually she was so wealthy that she didn’t need much of anything. Love, fundamentally, filled her up. She emitted this and I shall, for the remaining days of my life, miss her. I love you, Lola. God Bless! Until our spirits meet again… love, light and peace be with you.

the flood is mercy upon
this drought. she does
not understand death
is relief from pain—
the million ways we
suffer to earn one minute
of bliss with Him. oneness
is earned, not bought
and she won’t grasp it
until she escapes into
the next; how much of her
soul will be renewed,
how much power her life’s
devotion to God would
reverberate and exude

-mr gahon 1/12/15

Master of my Fate

“The master of my fate, the captain of my soul.” These words haunt me for though these should move me towards change for the better, I forget my spiritual purpose and find myself regressing just a little to catch myself at this point; that I am neither the master or captain. That I am still marred and influenced by many things, I react when I shouldn’t… I should be zen and at peace, but I am not. For these, I lag behind. I have to scrap most of it and start from the beginning.

Maybe that’s all we really need. A new beginning. For us to become the persons we need to be, perhaps a clean slate is mandated. Only then can we learn to rectify ourselves, our behavior. To be at peace internally in order to be able to project it toward our exterior environment. To stand firm like Neo, from the Matrix, and have the bullets come at us as though they are nothing at all.

a master at any–
i am none.
tricks of the cards,
deck upon deck,
I have learned
nothing but exceptions
to the rule– and
there are none.
i shall not rise
above this estranged
mind who turns my
spirit off, blowing
this flicker of light
I struggle to ignite;
if ever a blessing comes,
I pray it comes
to revive the death
wreaked havoc
inside me

© mr gahon 11/24/14

Uncle D.

Because I wasn’t brave enough to sum up my own pain in lieu of all…

Tomorrow wakes and

you are not, how much

more can I cry, fill

today with sorrow?

pining for the loss

underneath this flesh

where once this lamp

was lit with your light;

and to have you

not here with where

I am still… it is as

though the world

has gone dim, sans

sun, sans electricity,

sans energy finally

without, I am

without you

-mr gahon 7/24/12