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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.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014


 A Poem for Mikey, Grandchild #6,

Michael Albert O. Casuga, in red shirt, shy and reserved, stares at something while older brother, Matthew Francis eggs on his Dad, Albert Beau Casuga, with a banshee the pater did not react to kindly. (Eyes closed, or was that a grimace, Beau?)


(For Mikey, Grandchild #6)

Mikey (Michael Albert Casuga who turned 13 last May 7) bested his cousins in the game of balancing on the lily pads (mock pontoons) while crossing the pool without falling into the water before he gets to the last pontoon. This ancient mariner, bedazzled by his grandchildren’s confidence and derring-do, failed to even get past the first pontoon despite their egging him on: Come on, ‘lolo! You can do it! Just do it! --- Writer's Notebook on a Family Break at Great Wolf Lodge, Niagara

He leap-frogged lithely with tentative grace
from one drifting lily pad to the other,

an uncertain smile creased on his elfin face:
quite like relishing the exquisite danger
of leaping from one life moment to another
shorn of anxiety or fear a fall could end it all.

Would the pontoons hold
while he teeters on them
grasping for absent branches?

His final leap was also this old heart’s leap

of faith that this lad’s leap-frogging
will end in a crash of pool where ripples

are his balm and sinking is his baptism
of fire in a game called living where bridges

crumble with the tottering pontoons.


My only son, Albert Beau, (extreme left) with his wife, Sophia Ocampo-Casuga, a registered nurse at the Credit Valley Hospital in Mississauga, and their children: (L-R) Michael Albert, 13, Megan Sarah, 15, and Matthew Francis (with glasses), 17, Grandkids #6, 5, 3 respectively.

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