Treasure Island

Cynthia Aluning

(08-30-60 / Metro Manila, Philippines)

With A Dollar (A Message To Convey)

How do I spend thee?
How do americans spend this bill?
Even too cheap for a delivery tip
But can be a poem contest fee

54 pesos to a dollar sometimes 53
it fluctuates, its oil dependent
as per economy's situation
and peace and order too

With a dollar...

2 packs of cigarettes in 20's
a pirated CD or VCD
a cheap shirt for home use
unbranded bra or lipstick

your Chocolate Hershey bar
can buy us 2 kilos of rice
good enough for the day
plus a dollar or two for the viand

Your $600-$800 apartment rent
already a budget I keep for 30days
inclussive of bills, education fees
foods and kids' allowances

But come to think of it
In every hard-earned dollar bill
A poor family's day's meal
Not only in the Philippines
Elsewhere in poor countries

With a dollar I keep in my pocket
There's a message I can't forget
I think of my brother in LA
My relatives in Texas, USA
And the impoverished in whole Africa

*just the bare truth...

Submitted: Tuesday, March 14, 2006

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Comments about this poem (With A Dollar (A Message To Convey) by Cynthia Aluning )

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  • Joseph Daly (4/11/2006 1:05:00 PM)

    I like the way that you have begun this work: Almost love; but not quite, . There is a dissappoijntment in the rlationship but a recognition that it would never exist and things would not be the same. That you chose to paraphrase one of America's most famous is brilliant. (Report) Reply

  • merc gabriell (3/15/2006 1:29:00 PM)

    cynthia, long time no post. then here you are with this from-the-gut poem. i've been hearing about the situation in the philippines-the planned coup and the mounting disorder, and the government's lack of reforms to alleviate the plight of the poor. i like the nationalistic tinge of this poem. sincerely, merc (Report) Reply

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