Wartime Ghazal By Angela Gabrielle Fabunan

Wartime Ghazal

Illusion, the thought that you could go on
as you did in peacetime—in your house
watching the news without notice
complacently not knowing that
this is a time of war.

Who knows what war is
when you’re not affected, yet
at your doorstep, on your streets,
in your homes and in your cities,
it comes knocking: this is a time of war.

Who could care about new shoes, now
that lives are at stake, never forget,
know your enemy, know who you are
in this time of war.

What brought us here, where we stand
in a nationhood that was never solidified
into what could have been, what is a
Filipino in a time of war?

A fighting spirit that believes in principle,
in the dignity of human lives,
in reclaiming what’s been lost to us
because of this time of war.

By the window, the artists look
at the situation and gage:
yes, this is a time of war.

Pity the illustrado that cannot look
at his own shadow. A poem will never
start a war, but the ultimate farewell
of words do not bring about peace, either:
This is a time of war.

By Angela Gabrielle Fabunan

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