Cecilio Apostol

(22 November 1877 - 8 September 1938 / Santa Cruz, Manila / Philippines)

To The Yankee


As long as greed
Tears a gash in foreign hands

Poets, avengers
Of the universal conscience,
Can you be silent,
Drowning the honorable voice of
Protest?

Never, when might,
Joined with treason and injustice
To crush the laws and rights
The sacred rights of a race,

When the sons of the infamous Judas
Fell the faith that has been sworn,
When the whimper of weak peoples
They answer with animal laughter;

When the holy right is bartered
In the banquet of human ambition,
As when the Yankees
Toast a nation to the sound of a cannon;

Silence is impossible: the oppressed nation
Shall protest indignantly
And bury the dagger of vengeance
In the enemy's breast.

This unredeemed people
May perhaps succumb in the struggle,
But only its corpse
Can be yoked by alien tyranny.

Yankee! If u defeat us
With the powerful weight of weapons,
You will not live happily, because you are hated
Even by the air of my native land.

Yankee! If my verses
Survive me, their words
Will echo in the centuries to come
The eternal hate of the eternal outcast.

Submitted: Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Edited: Saturday, June 09, 2012

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