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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, May 3, 2011



If it had rained right then/I might have gone out under the trees to be/like the lover and his lover, awash in that murmur/passing like a single flower between them.---Luisa A. Igloria

Beware what you see beyond sheer Roman shades
pulled halfway down. The rain shower you saw
yourself drenched in scurrying toward the trees
for shelter from the sudden downpour? It did not,
could not dampen the heat that sullen afternoon
in the coffeeshop. But the murmur awash between
those lovers passing like a single flower between
them linger. And I, too, find myself under this tree
shorn still of its leaves but budding (a late spring).

I stayed under that tree, looking in, hoping you
had rushed out and found me there, waiting
with a coat and a misplaced parasol, to catch
you in a thunderstorm that would simply rend
those petals. But I would keep you prim-dry
while you laughed out a soulful surprise: Fancy
seeing us laughing in the rain, hallooing, too,
like lads and lasses running defiantly through
the rain, and not scared to steal a kiss or two.

Two graying heads under a sheer parasol
laughing but afraid the torrent will not stop.
It was good then, when we did not fear the rain.

—Albert B. Casuga

Collaborative Poem Prompt: "Interior Landscape, with Roman Shades and Lovers" by Luisa A. Igloria, Via Negativa,

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