Cheryl L. DaytecYañgot

Rookie (Baguio City, Philippines)

Salt On Wound - Poem by Cheryl L. DaytecYañgot

When nature liberated its anger
its air stream unbridled its muscle
scattering leaves to all directions
deracinating life-giving verdure
Some plants were robbed of life on
the soil of their birth and youth
Others were swept to faraway
shores where they withered away
or struggled to reclaim animation.

Such is the blight of poverty you
nurture like a favorite pet in this
land you call your principality
It flings your people to the globe’s far
corners ramming them out of their homes,
away from their spouses’ embrace
You have orphaned the children
while their parents are still alive
Babies who yearn for a mother’s touch
grow up suddenly in the night; in the
morrow, they are acquainted with life’s
harshness forbidden in an infant’s world
The cradle has abruptly shrank for them.
Homes have been shattered into minute
slivers they could not be pieced together.

There you are- counting the gold
wired to your kingdom’s coffers and
your elation reverberates throughout
the archipelago taunting loneliness and despair.
You ridicule the tears of the mothers as
they slave on foreign shores for the stomach
ignoring the yearnings of the heart.
You jeer at the anguish of the father
who has not witnessed the birth of his daughter
and her metamorphosis into womanhood.

Why do you call them heroes
when they are your victims?

12 June 1996

Background: During the administration of Fidel V. Ramos as President of the Philippines, he hailed the Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) as New Heroes. Their dollar remittances were significantly helping keep the Philippine economy afloat.

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Poem Submitted: Friday, October 10, 2008

Poem Edited: Friday, October 10, 2008

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