Personal · Prose Poetry

Who Needs a Birthday Wish?

Last year, it was “A Thank You Note on My Birthday”. This year, it’s a pledge.

Free Pretty Princess Pink Happy Birthday Cake Colors Creative Commons
Photo by Pink Sherbet Photography

Who Needs a Birthday Wish?
(a birthday poem by RJ, April 8, 2010)

When 230,000 people died in Haiti
And when hundreds more died in Chile?

When the world is slowly dying
And all of us with it?
When the truth’s become inconvenient
And the earth’s poles are shifted?

When NoKor trained its nukes
On all the world but itself?
Who, dear Lord would listen
To our desperate cries for help?

When a trainer gets killed
By her very own whale?
When secrets are peddled,
And lies are for sale?

When 57 people died
In a pre-elections convoy?
Because someone pulls the trigger
All too often like to a toy?

When a hundred mothers die
Everyday while giving birth?
When even more babies
Are thrown in the cold, damp dirt?

When 24% of the population
Consider themselves poor?
Yet the truth is more than that,
Yes more than that, I’m sure!

Is there a reason to ask
For a wish so unfeeling and cold,
When some people
Don’t even live to be a year old?

When people just “vanish”
Into thin air unexplained?
Just because they’re brave enough
To emancipate us, the enslaved!

When others spend their birthdays
Unconscious on a hospital bed?
When some are blind, some are dying
Or would never hear what I said?

Do I have one good reason
To ask for a birthday wish?
I want so much to ask for one,
Give me a reason, if you please?

Because today is my birthday,
My 31st.
And if there’s anything I want
The world to know, it is this:

The world doesn’t need
Another selfish birthday wish.
Too much has been requested,
Yet too few pledges have been made.

So today I make this pledge before you
And hope that you do the same
Long after my last birthday
May you remember why I came

To seek reconciliation and not enmity
To foster friendship and not animosity

To stop being selfish
And start being selfless

To count my blessings
And never the cost
To give what I can now
And forget what is lost.

To choose to see the good
But not to look away from the bad
To bring people together
And not separate them — that’s sad.

To heal past wounds
And not rub them again.
To be more forgiving, understanding
And not dwell on the pain.

To think less of me and more of you
To be more than a friend,
But a sister to you.

Because I have enough
And probably even more,
But like most people,
They wouldn’t admit to it, for sure.

We don’t need more diseases
What we need is a cure
We don’t need more pundits
With their thoughts so obscure

All we need is a little tolerance
Consideration and acceptance
A little more patience
A shot at deliverance.

This isn’t rocket science,
Not geekery-inspired.
Just a glimpse of the thoughts
I have here inside.

The flowers you give,
Soon enough may wilt.
And the words that you utter
Won’t wash away the guilt.

So make my day special
But don’t bother spending much
Diamonds and pearls,
I’m not a sucker for such.

If you’re thankful I’m alive,
If I bring you such pride,
It’s enough that you assure me
You’ll always be by my side.

Yes, remember this day
This day I was born.
But forget not, my brother
That this day isn’t mine alone.

So treat me no better today
Like you would tomorrow
Or like you did yesterday.


Though there’s nothing I stole
My life is but a borrowed role
And I am no more important
Than another human soul.

Happy birthday dear April 8 celebrants! May you find meaning in your life by living for others. And may you never have to celebrate your birthday alone.

Personal · Prose Poetry

Woe to the Writer

I was set to ‘kill time’ in school today. Made sure my journal was packed neatly in my bag. But lo and behold, as I was set to write, my lovely pen was nowhere in sight, thus the silly prose poetry. Tsk.

Woe to the Writer
by: RJ

Woe to the writer who is caught without a pen,
When the train of thought starts flowing
He’s but a helpless, crying baby in a hungry lion’s den.

How else will he appease upset dragons breathing fire?
How can his words satisfy this insatiable desire?

How else will he rationalize, hypothesize or theorize
Streams of musings that go swiftly in between blinks of his eyes?

In earnest ramblings of metaphors? Pitiful twists, ironies in disarray?
In incomprehensible assertions — all that cause the reader sure dismay.

The writer caught without a pen,
like a naked soldier amidst a fierce battle
Is left to either run, hide or foolishly surrender.

What to do then, pray tell, when all you have is the ‘here and now’
And when neither yesterday nor tomorrow will ever soothe you somehow?

When there is no time to waste searching for an elusive pen
Lest the ideas before you fly in haste like silly men.

How does a writer write when mere fingers can barely make a line?
When what’s in your head is sure to leave you in no time.

Woe indeed to the writer caught without his trusty pal,
When words come raining on a summer day’s lull.

If he misses this chance, this one perfect trine,
Tomorrow might pass him without passion or rhyme.

How will he pocket letters, mix and match, confound and clarify?
When nothing seems a blessing but these words from on high?

Such waste of time, such waste of thought,
Such moving tragedy for a struggling, stupid moth.

A loss indeed, a loss in need.
For what glory does a knight have
apart from his noble steed?

Personal · Prose Poetry

Thoughts that keep me awake at night

Photo by BrittneyBush

No Escape

by: RJ

There are thoughts that keep me awake at night

And keep me absent-minded in the day —

Gliding on a golden field, endless heaps of hay

Thoughts about what is and what was,

But never of what could be.

They haunt me of a past long gone and never will be,

They nag me of a present so persistent, a routine that I always see.

They remind me of a palpable sign,

Of shackles that bind me here,

In a place where wishes are bane and hopes are nil.

I climb so high, I fly, I sigh

I stumble yet again in this effervescent sky

I lift my arms and reach as high as I can

But I hear weeping and wailing from where I began

This dream I write, forget this I might

These thoughts I hold, it numbs my soul,

It’s so cold, I feel old

In May whisperings, “strengthen thy heart”, I was told

So I flutter, I mutter..

But when I utter, I stutter

Hard as I grasp every word, every syllable and letter

I am left without tomorrow, the future no brighter

Be banished you drifter! Rot away you squanderer!

Know that time is no kinder to neither miser nor spender

So I slouch, pretend to nap

Barely a moment’s passed

I snicker, I snap!

Not a pen was moved, not a firefly in sight

As I hold on tearfully and oh so fearfully tight

To these thoughts that keep me awake…

And kept me awake tonight.

Blogging · Personal · Prose Poetry

I am a Purist Blogger

Wordpress, Technorati, GBC stickers
Photo by Titanas

I am a Purist Blogger

(a blogger’s creed, by: RJ Marmol)

I am a purist blogger, I write original content.

I do not scrape from people’s blogs.

I give credit where it is due, I link back “no unfollow”.

I generally don’t get paid to blog.

But when I do, I disclose, always.

I am a purist blogger, I do not spam.

I do not send readers to unsafe links.

I do not cram my pages with ads, but with quality content.

I am a purist blogger.

I am not after your hits, I am after your hearts.

I am not after your traffic, I am after your respect.

I do not criticize just for the heck of it.

I do not blog anonymously just so I can malign people.

When I criticize, I sign my name — the real one.

I have accountability and responsibility for what I write.

What I write, I own.

What I own, I protect.

I am a purist blogger.

I do not deceive my readers.

When I’m selling something, I tell them.

When it’s an opinion I write, I warn them.

I am a purist blogger.

I intend to contribute to the discussion, not confound it.

I intend to build  communities, not destroy them.

I write for my readers, I write for myself.

Some will read me, some won’t.

Some will love me, some won’t.

Some will praise me, some will attack me.

But because I’m a purist blogger, I will keep on blogging.

I will write, and blog, and write.

I am a purist blogger.

And to all the world, let it be  known,

In this vast cyberspace that is my home.

I blog assured that I am not alone.

Personal · Prose Poetry

There Is Love: A Father’s Day Post

I Know There Is Love - Chris Stain & Armsrock at Ad Hoc
Photo by p0ps Harlow
This is an ode to the complexities and contradictions that make up the lives of fathers and husbands and the enduring love for them of their daughters and wives.

To all the Fathers and Husbands out there, Happy Father’s Day!

There Is Love
by: RJ

In that stern look,
Reciting countless threats of what not to touch,
Of what not to do, of what not to say.
No matter how sharp those eyes seem to be,
Even those windows to your soul betray you.
It shows me something else.
It shows me there is love.

In that heartbreaking comment,
That I look too thin now or too fat then,
That I look awful in my make-up,
That my perfume leaves a mind-numbing scent,
Even those words in your mouth betray you.
It tells me something else.
It tells me there is love.

In that fiery attack at my opinions
That I sound so stupid, so childish, so naive,
That I do not think as well as you
Or that I never will be as good as you..

Even those sentiments you keep hid in your heart betray you.
Because I feel something else.
I feel there is love.

For beyond your look are the eyes that I miss
Beyond your words are the lips I long to kiss,
Beyond your thoughts are the plans that I ardently wish,
And beyond this life is a love I can call my bliss.

So go ahead and give me that look
Pierce through my soul, cut within,
And while you’re at it, Why not burn it, peel this skin?
Grip my heart so tight, crush it with all your strength
Take its life in the very palm of your unforgiving hand
Say the meanest words you can ever come up with
Make up stories, mock me with your melodies
Do your best. And hey, do your worst.

For there is nothing I fear now.
There is nothing I feel,
There is nothing I see,
And there is nothing I long for
But to take this love of yours, catch it and bottle it up
Chain it, bury it and keep it for all its worth,

Because no matter what you do
And no matter how I think
It hits me with something else
It hits me with such powerful contradiction.
It hits me with sorrowful happiness,
With an unmistakable mix of inexplicable emotions
That proves to me — time and again
That you are, after all — all love.

You may be the puzzle I can never put together,
The equation I will never figure out,
The song I can never sing in perfect tune,
Yet one touch is all it takes,
I die in ecstasy in your warm embrace,
And I know in an instant, oh I know it too well
There is great love deep within you
There is love where you are
And I resolve to live and die perplexed
Under its irresistible spell.