The Poor Man And His Son

by Mahal Ko Kuya Ko   Jun 11, 2018

It feels as if I’m walking
on a pathway full of wilted azaleas,
and the northern mountains
look like the darkest landforms
I’ve ever seen…
This place looks
like the local market I’ve known,
it’s just that this used
to be where your footsteps camp,
where your stories linger –
the footsteps and stories
of a poor boy who picks up
thrown balls for a living.
You dyed your hair last night,
and I don’t know
how hard everything is for you,
I can’t be good enough
for anything and everything
even after getting
a bachelor’s degree,
even after turning 21.
I am still that kid you yelled at
and beat up for unknown reasons,
and I’ve been living my life
finding the courage
to pursue my earthly desires,
and yet…
I can’t be capable enough…

because my heart’s not strong enough
to build your empire,
to build my capital city,
all I know is to write
something only I will consider poetry,

because my mind’s not strong enough
to memorize the entire Pi chart
and the atomic mass of every element,
I am not genius enough to be a scientist,
not talented enough to be a superstar,
not good enough for a writer
or a human resource officer…

I, too, want to help this family,
pay for utility bills and other expenses,
I, too, am tired of unemployment.

At the end of the day,
all these times,

I just want to be the best son

a poor man who used to pick up
thrown balls
and now drives a garbage truck
for a living

can ever have.


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Latest Comments

  • 5 years ago

    by Tanya Southey

    Beautiful, we all feel like imposters at some point in our lives. Well deserved win.

  • 6 years ago

    by alka mendiratta

    Congratulations!!!! Well deserved Mahal .
    All the best !!!!

  • 6 years ago

    by Mr. Darcy

    Congratulations, a well deserved win.

  • 6 years ago

    by Mark

    Congrats on the win!

  • 6 years ago

    by Dagmar Wilson

    Congrats on your win

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