By: April Mae M. Berza
I could have read “The Fault in our Stars” but
I chose to hear your laments about your
ex who chose his ex over you.
The pain in my chest is like
an inactive volcano ready to burst
into tears, my jealousy is a magma
and all I can do is to keep quiet,
to stay still for a moment
until I could do no more.
Listening to the same stories,
same characters, same settings is more tolerable
if you would only try to include me
as one of the who in the where, when,
why and how.
Last night, I traveled a mile, walked for a while
just to commiserate with you, to be with
someone like you whose stories I dare not
dream of having for I know that tragedies
are better only for people who
can smile and laugh despite the challenges
life has to offer.
Oftentimes, we would share tears and smiles
over the phone for an hour or two and all
I could say is Yes or No.
There are days I would spend with you
than have a day-off and rest with my cat
whose stories are happier, my cat
whose paws could wipe the tears of the stars.
I could only feast with memories
but you could never be one of those memories
for your memories I was never a knight-in-the-shining-armor.
April Mae M. Berza is a member of Poetic Genius Society. She is a Kilapsaw fellow of Linangan sa Imahen, Retorika at Anyo. Her poems and short stories appeared in numerous publications in the US, Canada, UK, Romania, India, Japan and the Philippines. Some of her poems are published in Poetica, The Manila Times and Contemporary Verse 2, to name a few. Her poem “E-Martial Law” was broadcast on IndoPacific Radio on KPFA 94.1FM/kpfa.org. She lives in Taguig, Philippines. Para kay Xi Zuq.