Quick Fix 3: Walls

And every year, I feel the walls of this room getting smaller and smaller.

I run my hands along the concrete, hoping

to find a crack

To finally break through

To finally breathe fresh air.

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Undertow

The placid waters

Reflect every inch of my being

My surface, my depths.

The light scatters across

The shimmering mirror, inviting to touch.

The water calls out,

Testing my resolve

A Siren song.

I step in the water.

Waist-deep, the cold silk envelopes my legs,

Caressing everything it comes into contact with.

Its frigid presence

Reinvigorates my tired soul.

I wade further, I must

have more.

Chest-deep, deeper in its embrace

The eddies and ripples form around me

A blanket, nuzzling my breast with its frost.

Nothing else is present

but me and the watery chill

and the song of Sirens reaching out

enchantment.

I want to go deeper

have this blanket smother me.

But I know that

any further in

Too deep

Water well over my head

Dragged into the freezing abyss

Never to surface again.

 

 

 

Oddities of History: The Golden Goose

1470 A.D., in what is now the province of Tuscany, Italy: 

An artist’s apprentice explores the mountains of the locale. During his expedition, he encounters a cave. The young man ventures into the cavern, armed with nothing but a morbid sense of curiosity and adventure. In his diary, he recounts this encounter:

As I walked along the mountain trail outside of town, I happened to spy a cavern of modest size. Under normal circumstances, I would not have paid much attention to this cave, but on that fateful day, it would seem that the Lord had graced me with exceptional courage, and an insatiable curiosity to seek what this cavern holds. I made my way into the cave, careful not to lose my footing on the uneven ground. Not even twenty paces into the cave, I was already wrapped in darkness. Without a flame to help keep my composure, the courage I had was quickly replaced with the stories of bloodthirsty beasts my mother told me as a child. It was in caves like these where they would make their lair, waiting and preying on whoever would intrude on their territory. Not keen on becoming the lunch of a rabid creature, I turned towards the light and made my way out of the cave.

It was on my way out of the cave when a glimmering object caught my eye. In a niche on the cave wall sat a golden sculpture of a bird. It was about the size of my outstretched hand, and seemed to resemble the Aquila of the Roman Empire of old. Captivated by the unique craftsmanship, I took it upon myself to bring this exceptional find to my mentor in his workshop.

Reading through his later diary entries, it would seem that this ancient Roman artifact brought him good luck, as soon after, he gained a reputation for his artistry and craftsmanship. It is said that throughout his life, he always had the curious artifact in his possession, believing it to be the source of his fortune and inspiration. Whether by the work of the curious artifact or not, the man went on to have a prolific career. When he passed in his chateau in the French countryside, many were surprised to find that this already accomplished artist, craftsman, and inventor had hundreds of unpublished, and unfinished works, ranging from rough sketches, to blueprints for devices much too advanced for his time. Oddly enough, the lucky charm he so highly regarded throughout his life was nowhere to be found among the clutter of genius he had left behind.

1940, New York City, New York:

There had been reports of a curious old man who would commute to Central Park every day to feed pigeons. Not much was known about the old man, except for the fact that he used to work for the Westinghouse Electric Company and that he was an immigrant from the country then known as Yugoslavia. It was rumored that the old man, whose mind was clearly in the death throes of sanity, was a genius poised to become a rich man through his inventions. In an unfortunate turn of events, however, his work was falsely discredited by a more business-savvy rival. It was said that he never recovered from this fiasco; mentally, and financially. The old man was mostly harmless, talking mostly to the pigeons he fed, and barely anyone else. Although on the rare occasions he would open up to a curious passerby, the man would rant and rave about a pigeon he loved, saying that the pigeon had been with him since his youth, and that he owed it all his good fortune in life. The man would talk about his loved one as if it was one of the pigeons strutting around in the park, but when asked to point out the special bird, he would simply pull out a small plush bird from one of his coat pockets.

When the man died at the age of 86, his property was seized by the government. Among the items taken into inventory was his prized plush bird, but later recounting of the inventory would show that it went missing somewhere along the way.

These are just two famous instances of the numerous historical accounts of the cryptid known as The Golden Goose. While not necessarily a goose, it is agreed upon by most scholars that this magical being comes in the form of a bird, often golden, and that this bird grants good fortune, and wealth to those it appears to. Aside from good fortune, this bird has been associated by many cultures with creation.

In Aztec culture, the feathered serpent known as Quetzalcoatl is the deity associated with wind and learning in the Aztec pantheon. It is said that this being created books and the calendar, and that he crafted the humans of the fifth world* from the bones of the previous races.

In ancient Egypt, the major deity, Ra, is said to have made the sky, the earth, and the underworld. Those who worshiped him were often compelled to create great monuments such as the iconic pyramids in his honor. It is believed by the ancient Egyptians that Ra had such immense power to create, that he created himself from the primordial waters of the universe.

On Easter Island, in the middle of the Pacific, lived the Rapa Nui people, who crafted the great stone heads littered around the island. These people worshiped Makemake, the birdman, known for fertility and creation. Every year, they would decide on a leader to serve as Makemake’s spokesperson. This was decided by a contest, that had participants swim through shark-infested waters to a distant island, scale dangerous cliffs, and retrieve a certain egg from this island. With nothing but basic provisions, ingenuity, and determination, many would die from this contest, and only the strongest, and most resourceful of contestants would become the spokesperson of Makemake, and lead the Rapa Nui people.

In recent years, belief in The Golden Goose had fallen out of public eye. During the ’90s, however, a team of researchers ventured into the jungles of Lanao del Sur in the Philippines in search of the magical bird of the Maranao people known as the Sarimanok. It is believed that this expedition was a success. Tape recordings and notes found in their office in Metropolitan Manila indicates that the team managed to capture the Sarimanok, and smuggled it back to their office. It was in these six months after the expedition where the bulk of the theories and researches on The Golden Goose were written and conducted by this team. The research logs and recordings abruptly stop after this period, however. The team’s office was found abandoned, with research papers left unfinished, and the research team nowhere to be found.

The office sat untouched for many years, until a group of students decided to use it as their headquarters. It was found that these students use the former office as some sort of workshop. Oddly enough, these students have a mascot in the form of a yellow plush duck who sits atop one of their desks.

*In most Mesoamerican beliefs, we currently live in the fifth world. The previous four had been destroyed by flood, fire, and similar disasters. The destruction of the fifth world was believed by the Mayas to happen on December 21, 2012

Unfinished Project 1 – A Proposal On How To Fix National Apathy

A rising problem in today’s Filipino society is the apparent apathy of the masses towards the issues concerning our nation and its governance. Although there have been plenty of attempts at rejuvenating the interest of the masses, especially the youth, these programs have often been met with sub-par results. Let’s face it: government action such as the NSTP act is too ineffective and too slow-acting to give a substantial solution to the rising public apathy. Our rate of educating the youth is simply outpaced by the rate in which we produce the youth. What we need is a method to increase awareness that is more widespread, more effective, faster acting, and easier to implement than our quality education.

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Setting Up For Failure

Three years back, I started this blog. Three years back, I made it three posts deep before fizzling out. I knew all along I wouldn’t be able to keep up with this blog, but I made some posts anyway as a time-capsule of sorts, just to see where I was back then when I revisit this site.

Which is weird because I hate reading the stuff I write.

So, just as any self-conscious creator would do, those creations were nuked without deliberation. I didn’t even read the posts I deleted. Thinking about it, my aversion to read my previous works probably stems from a fear of failure. So much for a time capsule if it’s just gonna end up thrown away without being looked at. Chances are, this post, too, will be destroyed without much thought in the future.

Yet here I am, making another post, continuing this cycle of creation and destruction. I can only hope that one day, I will be able to break this cycle, and that I will not be afraid to face my failures. And if that happens, I’ll know for sure that I’ve made progress.

After all, you have to start out creating failures before you get to the masterpieces.*


*This may or may not apply to having children. I’ll get back to you on that.