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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.

Thursday, October 24, 2013



 (For Felix and Joanna, Engaged)

It is the way of beauty and of virtue you require,

the canon forgotten in our striving for the wind.

Come hither, anyway, hide your pain in the cup
of my hands, find that reprieve from a judgment

of endlessly inchoate loving, and let your heart
rest from its ceaseless running. Escape stops here.

Should I then pledge fealty to being your gaoler?
Should I find you an open cage to freely return to?

But these will only be tethers that must bind you
when all you pray for is to be loved and unafraid.

Now, therefore, with all my courage, and all
that I can grant, I absolve you from this price

of laying your life down for the countless kisses
you have given and not taken any in return.

---Albert B. Casuga

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