Christian Rodil

Manila Never Sleeps


“You can’t bring an unwritten place to life without losing something substantial.

Manila is the cradle, the graveyard, the memory. The Mecca, the Cathedral, the bordello.

The shopping mall, the urinal, the discotheque. I’m hardly speaking in metaphor.

It’s the most impermeable of cities. How does one convey all that?”

                                                      ― Miguel Syjuco, Ilustrado


I remember the loud collision of a deranged bullet.

Frantic was the sound. It enthralled the night’s wings

And vividly strangled the moon’s refracted glare into ashes.


No witnesses were enshrined. Why would I tinge the clock?

Reversed it to the quarter. Dividends of these fiascos, oh

I stitched my lips equally with my own hands.


My dreams are surreal. Intricate for sure— Caricature

Of the polemic reality: Dinnerless nights smoked into

‘Hit and Breathe’ parabolas of Meth and Gin pomelo.


Pungent roars massacred the peaceful façade.

Cold creeps into my skin. Whoever that was, I fear

For my uncle.  Sacred delegates of imminent demise.


The dive of death with Eurydice at the stoic chasm

Of Moriones in Tondo. The panacea for the unending

Convulsions! Deep snort to the navel of the gun.


Martyrs of war. March to the long unushered alley.

Gripped by the sides. Weaned from these as we cheers!

I have in my head everything that is religious and secular;


Acceptable and taboo. Permissible and forbidden.

The idea of a perfect synergy

Between the dichotomy of faith and perfidy.


A fraying cyclone will explode chewing the memories

That were scattered in the street. We will go on.

Another long night for a month-long wake for Juan Dela Cruz—



- rodil


  • Dear--JaneDoe

    Wooooow so amazing, love this style!

To be able to comment and rate this poem, you must be registered. Register here or if you are already registered, login here.