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ALBERT B. CASUGA, a Philippine-born writer, lives in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, where he continues to write poetry, fiction, and criticism after his retirement from teaching and serving as an elected member of his region's school board. He was nominated to the Mississauga Arts Council Literary Awards in 2007. A graduate of the Royal and Pontifical University of St. Thomas (now University of Santo Tomas, Manila. Literature and English, magna cum laude), he taught English and Literature (Criticism, Theory, and Creative Writing) at the Philippines' De La Salle University and San Beda College. He has authored books of poetry, short stories, literary theory and criticism. He has won awards for his works in Canada, the U.S.A., and the Philippines. His latest work, A Theory of Echoes and Other Poems was published February 2009 by the University of Santo Tomas Publishing House. His fiction and poetry were published by online literary journals Asia Writes and Coastal Poems recently. He was a Fellow at the 1972 Silliman University Writers Workshop, Philippines. As a journalist, he worked with the United Press International and wrote an art column for the defunct Philippines Herald.

Sunday, April 3, 2011



Where blends the cane leaves with mist and rain/ Blends the shadow and the movement/ Each defining courage from fear, fear from pain.—Bivouac, 1990 From “A Theory of Echoes.”

(For Beau at 44)

I call it my hammock hour: time for stillness
to descend with sundown, shadows grown long
among the cane leaves, and I hum your lullaby.

“You were a break of laughter firmly cut
on father’s chin before your birth, your life
was a smile in the mischief of cigars.
You have been born before in a shock of memory
when all mother could remember were nights
father was the agile dancer dancing dense
the deep dark duty that you were. O my son.”

I cherish the stillness that makes sounds crisp
even as I talk to the shadows on my porch walls:

“When did you come home? I must have dozed off.
Have I ever thanked you for naming your firstborn
after my father, and your second after me? Is it true?
Mother said not after me, really. After you. No matter.
I named you after me. And they shall have longer shadows.”

But the sounds and the shadows move as movements move
and disappear with the night. I, too, turn down my hammock.

—Albert B. Casuga
Mississauga, Ont., 04-03-11

Prompted by a Morning Porch post of Dave Bonta, April 3, 2011

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