First, we forget our names

Poetry by Reil Benedict Obinque |

for m

How can a four-letter name be so long? Like learning for the first time the sound of m. Pressed lips. Air out nasal passageway. I have to forget it now, for what once sliced the earlobes with feathers now tickles it with glass shards. Already, as I read your name in a sentence of this week’s novel, M looks like a devil’s horn – the same horn which once were flaps of a heart. A tender turn now a stabbing thorn. I will erase with the cheapest pen I can find the set of your names I scribbled on my journal. Or I will altogether burn it. And as fire engulfs it, I will refuse to trace your name on the swirling smoke. First, we forget our names, and when the stinging stops as we spit the letters, we will forgive, we will forgive, we will forgive them.


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Topics: Contemporary Literatures from Davao Region, Poetry from Davao, Reil Benedict Obinque

Published by

Reil Benedict Obinque

Reil Benedict Obinque was a writing fellow at the 2014 Davao Writers Workshop, the 57th Silliman University National Writers Workshop, and the 25th Iligan National Writers Workshop. His works appeared in Dagmay Literary Journal, Philippines Graphic, and The Manila Times. He currently teaches Calculus at the Ateneo de Davao University Senior High School.

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