My photo
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 6, 2014



“Call on the Skype. You will see her and she you. She won’t know you’re away.”

She toddled to her piggy bank,
Calling out to us on a Skype,
Promised by the techno-gods
As the ultimate hugger-video
Calls and “you will never miss
Each other, however far you
Travel, wherever on this planet
You go.” Hugging the porcine
Money keeper, she cried quietly:
“I got money for ticket, Yo-ya,*
I ride on airplane. I come see you
In Vegaaas. Come, Tati, come,
let’s go to my Yo-ya on airplane
in ehport. Come.” (to her aunt,
Our first born, and a soltera).

Pleading, the Skype-Granny,
Helpless, hapless on one end
Of the visual enabler, magic
Wand of lonely absentee lovers,
Quietly said, between sniffles:
“I will see you soon, darling,
Babalik na si Lola. Uuwi na ako.”*

The wee lass, yesterday’s infant
Still in their eyes, showed paper
Bills and coins: “look, Yo-ya,
I have money, and, and, I come
See you in Vegaaas.” Old folks,
On holidays, are never too far
To brush those little tears
Rolling off her reddened cheeks,
But they, too, cry who miss one
Precious wee lass grown feisty
Brandishing measly paper bills
To fly to filthy-rich Las Vegas
Bulging with gold on the Sierras.

---Albert B. Casuga
04-05-14, Las Vegas, Nevada

*Yo-ya (‘lola, endearment for abuela, grandmother in Spanish)
*Babalik na si Lola. Uuwi na ako. (Lola is coming back. I am coming home.)
Marie Clementine, is our 2-1/2 year old youngest granddaughter. Like her mother, she talks now in a rapid fire manner.


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