Saturday, September 26, 2009

Chanted Poem/Song by Mila Anguluan-Coger

YA PALLABBET | ANG PAGBABALIK LOOB | THE JOURNEY HOME
By Mila Anguluan-Coger, 09.18.09

Chanted Poem/Song at the Ritual Gathering of Sacred Music, Dance & Poetry
Saturday, September 19, 2009. Berkeley, CA

Intan intan… labbet tan intan
Intan intan… labbet tan intan
Halika na uwi na… halika na uwi na…

Kaam ta kunukunnay ya kwammu?
Bakit nyo po ginagawa ito?
Why do you do this, Lola? As a child I’d wonder
Why grandmother chanted to call me, even while beside her
After visiting strange places and it was time to go home
Why do you do this, I would repeat
And slowly, she’d look at me, and say gently
Whispering a secret known only to both of us
So that you won’t get lost, my child
So that you won’t go wandering too far
Too far that you’d never return again.


And then she’d chant and do it all over
Intan intan… labbet tan intan… Intan intan…. labbet tan intan
Imploring with her voice, singing softly with the wind, distinctly
Calling… for my fragmented selves in fragmented places
Come home… come home… time to come home…
Come to this body again… come to this mind…
Come to this heart… come back into this inner space
Come… all you wandering selves together
Come home… and be whole again.

And she’d take hold of my hand
Wrapping my tiny hand, enclosing it in hers
In her strong hand, her nurturing hand and
All at once I’d feel like it was the safest place to be
Despite the creeping darkness, despite the chilling night.

Other nights have come: nights of doom, nights of sorrow.
Many other places: places of torment, places of pain
Many lands traversed, many more to be traveled
Lands that are jagged, cruel, leering, eerie
Oceans that are frothing, seething, smearing
Places where our many selves go
Wandering into…peering into… swallowed into.



Lola, like other ancestors, was babaylan
She whose voice kept calling with the wind, dispelling despair
She whose pungent herbs curling in burning coals would flow into dreams
And deep sleep where soft smoke soothed the unseen pain
Healed the open wounds, brought together flesh and soul torn apart
So that healed, daughters, granddaughters and great granddaughters
Sons and grandsons, sondaughters and daughtersons
Heir to her power of peace, silence, resilience, song, dance, touch
Animate once more the babaylan legacy of dispelling darkness
Healing pain, praying peace, chanting to all our little selves

Intan intan… labbet tan intan… intan intan… labbet tan intan
Come home… come home… time to come back home…
Come to this body again… come to this mind…
Come to this heart… come back into this inner space
Come… all you wandering selves together
Come home… and be whole again.


YA PALLABBET
ANG PAGBABALIK LOOB
THE JOURNEY HOME
By Mila Anguluan-Coger 091809

Intan intan… labbet tan intan
Intan intan… labbet tan intan
Halika na uwi na… halika na uwi na…

Kaam ta kunukunnay ya kwammu?
Bakit nyo po ginagawa ito?
Why do you do this, Lola? As a child I’d wonder
Why grandmother chanted to call me, even while beside her
After visiting strange places and it was time to go home
Why do you do this, I would repeat
And slowly, she’d look at me, and say gently
Whispering a secret known only to both of us
So that you won’t get lost, my child
So that you won’t go wandering too far
Too far that you’d never return again.

And then she’d chant and do it all over
Intan intan… labbet tan intan… Intan intan…. labbet tan intan
Imploring with her voice, singing softly with the wind, distinctly
Calling… for my fragmented selves in fragmented places
Come home… come home… time to come home…
Come to this body again… come to this mind…
Come to this heart… come back into this inner space
Come… all you wandering selves together
Come home… and be whole again.

And she’d take hold of my hand
Wrapping my tiny hand, enclosing it in hers
In her strong hand, her nurturing hand and
All at once I’d feel like it was the safest place to be
Despite the creeping darkness, despite the chilling night.

Other nights have come: nights of doom, nights of sorrow.
Many other places: places of torment, places of pain
Many lands traversed, many more to be traveled
Lands that are jagged, cruel, leering, eerie
Oceans that are frothing, seething, smearing
Places where our many selves go
Wandering into…peering into… swallowed into.



Lola, like other ancestors, was babaylan
She whose voice kept calling with the wind, dispelling despair
She whose pungent herbs curling in burning coals would flow into dreams
And deep sleep where soft smoke soothed the unseen pain
Healed the open wounds, brought together flesh and soul torn apart
So that healed, daughters, granddaughters and great granddaughters
Sons and grandsons, sondaughters and daughtersons
Heir to her power of peace, silence, resilience, song, dance, touch
Animate once more the babaylan legacy of dispelling darkness
Healing pain, praying peace, chanting to all our little selves

Intan intan… labbet tan intan… intan intan… labbet tan intan
Come home… come home… time to come back home…
Come to this body again… come to this mind…
Come to this heart… come back into this inner space
Come… all you wandering selves together
Come home… and be whole again.

1 comment:

  1. i feel, in this powerful poem, to be beckoned home by a beloved's voice---a mother's, a grandmothers, The Great Mother, Inang Bayan... there She is in our hearts, inviting us to come home, to journey the Pagbabalikloob, Return to deepest most innermost self. I am deeply, moved, Mila. Thank you. thank you. madamo gid nga pagpasalamat.

    ReplyDelete