There are things I’d rather whisper and never quite say out loud. — Virginia Woolf, in a diary entry dated 20 July 1938 (via larmoyante)
he weakens my knees
and cripples my heart
he is the first to catch me
when I am falling apart
In spite of my not so ideal job, I’ve managed to get through the days with a simple goal in mind. And that is to save enough money to secure some financial certainty in the coming years. If anything, I’m not well-versed in personal finance. My goal has always been simple: to be financially independent from my folks. What I know of saving, spending, and investing, I’ve learned from my parents’ experiences - both the good and bad. Other lessons come as success stories from friends, or practical advice from my siblings and their colleagues. Of course, I do my own research. I’ve discovered bearable investment schemes with regards to my income, and I’ve found independent writing opportunities to augment what I earn. Along with it, I’ve managed to live on a budget. Save first, spend later: that’s been a critical financial mantra I keep to heart.
If you asked me for financial advice, you’d most likely go nowhere because my idea of being “financially independent” is questionable. Kidding aside, I’ve never been aggressive when it comes to money, mainly because I like my risks low to medium. I don’t have disposable income, so I prefer to weigh my options. Understanding risks is something I’m slowly developing, and not just with money, mind you. I’m averse to uncertainty, and friends could attest to how uptight and controlling I can be. When it comes to money, I want to make sure I do it right.
If there is one virtue you need however, it is patience. Like what I wrote before, mansions are easy to built, palaces take time. I do believe it applies to any sort of investment: financial, academic, social, or even personal. You reap what you sow, but growth is gradual, and not something that should be hastened. Easy money is good, but based from my experience, it’s also easy to run out. When you invest on something long term, you manage your risks better.
One of the best things about being single is daydreaming. You can imagine a slew of possibilities about your first lover. How will the first kiss be? What kind of electricity will charge your spine as every touch is transformed into loving reassurance? Do you become the practical boyfriend, or the tempestuous, jealousy-driven, clingy partner you’ve always detested? How will you act from knowing you’re no longer single? Will you bloom as they say? God, what are the rules on date nights? Are you supposed to greet your lover every single morning?
And then comes the more nightmarish questions:
How does one continue to please his partner? How does one resolve arguments? What do you say when asking for forgiveness? How long should you stay angry at someone? Do you have sex right at the get-go? Oh God, what if he’s seeing someone else? Am I enough?
Suffice to say, I enjoy playing such scenarios in my head. I’ve always been the dreamy, overthinker. It’s not a compliment, mind you, but my mind if full of synapses I can’t control. Imagining is - horoscope aversion aside - the Piscean nature.
So who would it be? Is he someone I know? God forbid, is she someone I know? When does he come? Does he even come? Who would have the honors - modesty aside - of being the first person I’m in a relationship with?
I never knew love
could be violent, as
to tear the sea
shake the knees
cripple the heart
though men be Greek, of ocean eyes
a dashing prince, a brave new knight
of lands and lords, of halted words
of vein-coiled arms, and lustful swords
though men be vain, of polish shoes
a head’s pomade, and midnight truce
of nude delight and dusty crowns
of fools’ device, to his renown
few can claim this fellow’s heart
of thorns and torn, strong of songs
few can pierce the mellow parts
of boy and girl, in one belong
When you dance to your own rhythm, life taps its toes to your beat. — Terri Guillemets
Next week, Filipinos take to the polls for the midterm elections. Pageantry, popularity, and promise all at stake.
I would like to take this time to remind my Filipino friends and readers to vote according to their conscience. We are at a crossroads once more, and regardless of how effective you think your vote may be, it is your civic and moral duty to exercise the right to suffrage. Our country is beset by a myriad of problems but a vote of conscience is never negligible. Your choice can cause a spirited rally for true change.
It is easy to be persuaded to vote based on emotion, when we are impassioned by great speeches, or moved by the seeming purity of intention by many of those running for public office. But as history has taught us so incessantly, the motives of those who seek a post in government are often cloaked in their grandiose promises of economic empowerment, societal reform, and wide-reaching “change”. Let us take the initiative to investigate the causes of candidates. Let us be more discerning in these times. While the promises may move as, unknown perils may be lurking.
By all means, vote. Vote for those who share your vision of a better Philippine society. Vote for those with a fortified moral conscience, who can weather the temptations of power, and use it instead to transform the lives not just of the elite or the middle class, but those who truly need it. Vote for those who can, and who will, brave the slums, who will dignify the lives of our labourers, who will fight for our women and children. Vote for those who will defend our rights, and allow it to empower us. Vote for those loyal to the cause of the underprivileged and marginalized, not the puppets of their parties. Vote for those who can think independently, yet act with and for others. Vote for those who can lead their own conscience, not those who follow their caprice. Vote for those who value reason more than money. Vote for those who can empathize with the plight of so many. And if you find none among the candidates, do not fear the protest of a blank vote.
Go to the polls knowing the choice is ours no matter the turnout. There is no greater feeling than to know you’ve voted according to your conscience.
hidden, in walls of muscle
and pillars of bone
the secret to any grin
to be unmolested by any sense
rather consumed, devoured
by all flames.
though gaiety be benign
in weepy anguish
lost love never is
I don’t think there is an ecstasy as good as what you get when an idea troubling your mind becomes a written work. When those spurts of words, and arresting seconds of paranoia, finds resolve in something as a finished poem, or a published novel. Nights when you found yourself awake, possessed by a furious need to write, goddamit, write until it bleeds, until it frustrates you. And when it is done? Not relief. Not mere freedom. Joy, close to a woman who has given birth to a first time; closer to the death which approaches us all.