The Home Coming

In the sterile hallways of a public hospital. The fluorescent lights buzz above, giving off a dim white light—never bright enough. Just like that,...

A Visit from a Ghost Father

You came to me in a dream, But I failed to remember Your gaunt face, half-hidden in the moonlight, Dappled by the shadows of Gnarled trees, their dark...

Where Are You, God?

Here’s a thought, what if God is dead? That our creator has ceased to be, and there is no power overseeing the universe anymore....

The Sun Spoke

In the garden Cradling tea Quiet morning When suddenly I saw, without warning: The Sun. As one often does when the day is begun. Absorbed By this orb, unusually soft, aloft I was beholding deeply golden , gently...

Requiem for Pasig River

“Leave it to the authorities,” says a lady, stepping out of a jeepney. “It’s too much for a high school kid.” REY SQUINTS AS he...

Wandering Sestina

Here is my baggage, passport and boarding pass. And yes, I’m fit to travel, sit in the plane’s emergency exit row. Almost nothing is left to...

Love Is Never Far from You

Love is not far from you. She is not clear as dew Not born in the wet lands Not on the lush of leaves.   Love is not far...

Peninsula

And the dusk finally dusts to the south of the slope. Leaving gritting teeth and a rusted well On the edge of a 4 PM conversation. Meanwhile...

The Roller-Coaster

My breathing is irregular. I press down my hand against my ribcage… I can’t feel anything. I ram my glottis with two fingers and...

Salvation by the Numbers

Ten commandments, an eightfold path, I just can’t live up to all that math. Just twenty-four hours in one day, I don’t have the time to fully...

The Uber Driver

Shenton Way. The financial district of Singapore where the most savvy of the population congregate. Along this expensive stretch of commercial real estate and...

Mechanics for the Nick Joaquin Literary Awards Asia-Pacific

We at the Philippines Graphic and our sister-broadsheet, the BusinessMirror, are very pleased to announce the expansion of the Nick Joaquin Literary Awards to...

In the Name of the Daughter

Marya Ignacio weaves her hair with her fingers watching as the curls separate adhesively from her sweat-dripped forehead. They have been on the hillside...

Admit One

I have never been to a general hospital alone before: sitting on one of the plastic benches shoulder to shoulder with faces stuck on the Now Serving...

Nature

At first, her family thought I was the wind who came to take her away from them. Especially when I accidentally slammed the door...

The other side

Perhaps it was the way of the city for things to disappear quickly and without warning. Rust spread across the metal shutters of the...

Dried Fish

Here goes the Australian lady from the second floor again, standing at the door, towering over Mama and looking mad. “It bloody stinks in...

The Final Bullet

Her father called it a six-gun. A revolver. It no longer boasted any paint or markings from its original make. Instead, the weapon bore...

Dominus

Don Isidro sat on his chair at his home office, and in front of him where three bottles of single-malt whiskeys of different brands:...

Lights of different colours

Christy dabs her eyes to dry her tears with the flannelette sheet as she pulls it up to her neck, tucking herself in tightly...