Tuesday, January 26, 2010

A Fiction Story Online

Falling in Love on the Net

By: Rosalinda Flores - Martinez

Also online on LULU EBOOKS.COM

Happy reading!

To All My Beloved

This is falling in love.

Dear Kieth,

I am missing you, please write.



September 4, 2003

My Darling,

I have told you that I miss you

My heart breaks a little more each day



each other.

All I have is yours, my heart and my love

I can have no secrets from the woman

I adore.

All my love,


September 4, 2003

Dear Kieth,

You make me feel important, though I could not give you anything

Your tenderness melts me

Your words suffice me

Thank you for giving your heart to someone you do not even see

I can feel your kindness

My tears are flowing

Thank you

for being nice

to me.



My Dearest Ashra,

We keep missing each other.. .

My heart breaks when I can’t find you.

My earnest dream would be to hold you in my arms when I sleep

And to wake with you.

The way I feel would make it impossible to hold you through the night

without wanting to love and adore you forever.

My heart and soul, as always, are yours to command.

I love you,


My Dearest Kieth,

For bearing with me and my crazy scribbles – my gratitude

Writing you set my words free

I wish I could mean more than my words.

Yes I do,

I treasure that love

I keep it with me to my grave.



September 7, 2003

My Dearest Ashra,

My love, heart and soul are yours to do with what you will

We are not old enough to need love nor too young to waste it

I need to express how I feel for you because

I would surely regret

Never having told you

I am yours to love or discard, but my love

Is my gift to you for an eternity.

My Dearest Kieth,

Forever is a word seldom used, I could not imagine the great

love in

your heart.

Yes, when you are sad – think that sometime I came into your life and



Held you close with an embrace


Kissed you until dawn… never to let you go

I could die in your arms


I love you.


My Dearest Ashra,

Although forever is a word seldom used,

It would be fleeting compared

To how

Long I will cherish you

The love in my heart is for you and you alone

My only wish is to see your beautiful face

Before when I close my

Eyes to

Sleep and wake with you still next to me

To explore our love and passions would be

A dream

All my love,


September 8, 2003


How can dreams come true?

How can it become real?

Then I give you my all, my heart and myself

Do as you wish in your dreams

I am yours

In the pigments of your imagination

I submit to you

With love in my heart

I will cross space and time with you.

From Salem

Why did you dry up writing emails?

I am missing the affection you

Promised me.

Hi Kieth,

My love will break bounds

In the hope that sometime you and I will be together


My Darling,

I am sad

That I could not hold you

I am sad

That I couldn’t give you the

Warm touch of my affection,

To Salem,

YOU come and you go

Leaving me memories


Yet I cherish

Every moment

When you remember me

If I could only make you mine

I long for you as sunlight is to a rose

And if I could I only take you

I would not hesitate to do it




You make my dreams come true


I could rest in your love.

September 8, 2003

Forgive me for intruding

Into your peaceful life

For taking your love

You realize my wishes

Catch my falling tears

I could cry in your arms

I wish that you will never let me go

In this illusion

Because I’d rather be lost

In a dream

With you.

Real love betrays

But dreams pursue the stars

You are my dream.



September 8, 2003

My darling Ashra,

I could not leave you if I tried

You have my heart in an embrace

That I cherish

If I am your dream then you are

The fulfillment of my every wish and hope

I wish, I could give you more

Than just words

Anything at all that you want from me

Is yours, just ask my love

I am yours until the sun fades

From the sky for the very

Last time.

My love always,


My dearest Ashra,

I accept anything of yourself you can give

Your words keep me sane throughout the day

For without your love I would lose

The will to live

I gave you my heart it is yours to play

Just please, please tell me you love

Me if only once in a day

I am yours to do with what you will

My love and heart always,


September 9 2003

To Kieth,

NO I would not play with your heart

For if you lose the will

Then I had lost mine

Please stay. Please take care

I love you.


Kieth, tell me please

How do I go on with my review

I find it difficult for there are many chores and I still need to do a lot of readings..

If I don’t make good in this

Sort of me being hopeless

Also, I don’t chat anymore

Though it’s fun. Tired of the 2 month exploration.

But it’s good then. I

got friends.

I enjoyed it and I have learned a lot…

I live a simple life now but with a broken heart

I would welcome your suggestions


I fear tomorrow

Of sometime losing you

Or of sometime going away

Of sometime without you

How could I live then?

And if so

When I’m gone

My ashes


In the wind -

will still embrace you.

Loneliness creeps

Like shadows in the night

When I think


Our love

That would not be realized

I love you,

To Ashra,

I miss your long emails. I miss our chat

Have you forgotten me now?


Hi Salem,

I could not find you

Yes, my heart breaks a little more each day

I chat a little with someone

But I could not

It was you that I always thought of.

September 10, 2003

Dear Ashra,

You are in my thoughts everyday

No one can replace you

I am dying without you

Dear Kieth,

Please stay

I am missing you so much

Someone told me that you could be my fantasy

I said NO, I don’t fantasize

I have a dream

I don’t want anyone stealing my dreams.

You are my dream

Until the sun fades from the sky for the very last time

I would keep your heart

And give you my love – my all

Please take care darling

My love forever,


Hi Ashra,

As for me – I want

to keep something

That I could not hold and own

Something that only the heart knows

And can understand

That which stays in life

But does not end in death

Someone I could keep

As a friend forever

This is sacred.


TO Salem,

I could not count

The times I think of you


Why you came into my life

Searching for the answers

To my questions

The whys of you

The whys

I could not ask you

Not even beg

Only remain

To be what you like

So I could stay

With you

And be your friend

In the withering corners


My heart.


September 10, 2003

My Dearest Ashra

You are the one reason of my existence

I was put on this earth for just one reason, to love you

My love now and forever,


2.Dearest Ashra,

I am currently working nights so it

Is difficult to get on line for

Any length of time.

3. My dearest Ashra,

My love is yours, my soul is yours

You cannot lose someone who is your soulmate

I am yours forever

My love always,


My Darling Ashra,

My love knows no bounds

Even if we do not talk, my heart is in your hands

My thoughts are full of you

My dreams are of you alone

My love is for you only


Dearest Ashra,

I am yours and you are mine I think

Of you constantly

I yearn for your touch every waking moment

I need your love for without it there

Would be no point in my existance

My heart is yours,


Dearest Darling Ashra,

YOU are my dream, my fantasy and my life

If only we could have met at an earlier time, I would have gladly

Devoted my

Mind body and soul just to

please you

I am here for you whenever

You need me

My heart as always is yours

Together with my love


Dear Kieth,

I feel your warm embrace

I feel your gentleness

I feel your heart missing me

I feel you holding me

I feel your love till the sun fades

But I wont take your soul because it belongs to GOD alone

I’ ll take your love and your heart

Please stay


My Dearest Ashra

I love you more than I could ever

Put in words

You must trust that my

Love is solely for you

I pray that you can feel my love


Please love me for I could not exist without you

GOD, although all seeing and loving

Could not deny that my soul is yours He

Knows that you are the keeper of my hopes and dreams.

My heart belongs to you alone.


TO Kieth

Our love conquers distance

The souls

Are entwined in the wind

Blown from heaven

Now I’m full of you

I exist

My heart throbs for you each day

Whispering your name, in

The depth of silence

I keep every moment

Thinking of you and pray

Holding your heart

Never to part

Until I die

unto eternity

I shout your love

In the roaring thunder

I cry in the gentleness of your


I bleed in the sweetness of it

Until I sleep in peace

And rest with you,

With you.


More laters after Saturday

Email me more

I would not let you go

After you made me crazy

‘Miss you sweetie.


September 12, 2003

My Darling Ashra

I felt tears as I read your work

Your words touch me as no

Others ever have

I ache for you everyday, my body yearns for you

I exist only for you, if you

Discarded me, I would have

No reason for my being here

My love always and forever


My Dear Kieth,

I’m glad you liked my scribble and that you felt tears because as I was writing, it was

really painful for me to grapple for the right words. You are my inspiration. I could not

have thought of the crying, the embrace, and my bleeding had I not thought of your

gentleness with me. The soul can never lie. I could not lie in what I said

Please write and tell me again

You love me

Thank you for yourself

Now I believe in soulmates

I love you,


ALL THE WAY, my poems are for you:

In the darkness of the night I feel you

Illuminating my heart

Your hands gently wipe away

The tears on my face

Like soft clouds touching


I feel you holding me

Keeping a rose on the altar offering a prayer

I feel you

Kissing me, my soul

Weaving remnants


My last breath is sealed with your gentle kiss.

Time and time

I look for a friend

Breaking in the warm

Joy gushing

Skipping waves

To the silent shores

I drown in the tranquility of your heart

In the silent throbs of your breath


Dearest Ashra,

My love is yours until time ends the sun rises no more and man has vanished from the earth.

I will always love you,

Dearest Kieth,

I could not attain peace

If I could not write you

Everyday I am missing you

And would like to embrace you

Rest in your arms.

I would like to kiss you

Feel your breath

In mine

My every heartbeat

Would not let you go

Death is the only reason

That would stop me from writing you

But my love stays with you until eternity

I could be anything for you

Because I love you so much

Please don’t stop loving me

Keep me until time ends

The sun rises no more

And man has vanished from the earth.


The friend I’ve always wanted?

No one equals the great you

I would not lose you

I’m ready to stand by you

And pick the stars for you.

Happy birthday Salem!


September 15, 2003

I have been wondering why you don’t write me

Are you sick?

Are you busy?

Is there something wrong?

Did you receive my emails?

I am so lonely thinking you might have forgotten me


September 17, 2003

My Dear Ashra,

I could never forget you

You keep my heart beating, my very existence depends on you

You are the air I breathe

My love cannot fade

I love and adore you

My heart is always yours.

My Darling Ashra,

I miss you more than I could ever express in words

My love is yours.

I could never be angry with you

I write trying to answer each mailing I get from you

You are not disturbing me,

How could the woman I adore be troublesome

I too would like to meet again on line

To talk, exchange our deepest thoughts


The picture I sent was the only one I have in my PC… my webcam is playing up.

I will

have to get another or borrow one for now.

I would love to see your pretty face because it breaks my heart – when

We keep missing



You are my reason for living,

Take care and kisses for you



Be safe.



My Dearest Ashra,

I received your picture this morning

I thought I had seen an angel

You are beautiful than I could ever hope to deserve

My heart, soul, and body are yours

My love always


My Dear Ashra,

I do not know what you like me for so much.

You have humbled me.

All my life no one has expressed to me the way you have.

You are a very nice person, a very nice looking gal.

Reading your messages and watching you look two different things, you look so

quiet and there is so much inside you to be explored.

I don’t know where to begin from.

I am glad to have you a s great friend.

It was pleasant reading all about yourself.

Trust me what you disclose to me is not going to go

anywhere and its going to remain just with me.

I have never eloped with any girl outside of my

married life and now I am here with you

talking everything. Lol. This is crazy but at the same time

I have a feeling of teen...

I shall never call on your landline phone but

I shall try to call you on your mobile.

I am not sure but I shall call you, that’s a promise.

I am at work now and I will be here

even tomorrow. If I am online I shall leave a message for you.

Take care, luv yah,


You paint my fairest imagination

Of love in autumn

September 22, 2003

For Salem,

You are in my thoughts everyday

I could not deny the feeling

Of missing you always

Thinking about our exchange of ideas

Is far beyond any other conversation

And though we are oceans apart

The separation from one another further extends the

Possession of life,

The distance of place renders the conjunction

Of our wills

Life is a process of continuous desires

The agony of struggles break the heart

Yet each and everyday that we triumph

Is an increase in virtue

And love

I could not question my existence for you

About yesterday, nor about tomorrow

I love you so much today and promise

To keep it until the end of time.

Yes, I thought about most of the things we talked about and how much I love and yearn

for you of making you happy

But I’m sorry

I think I could not be like the others

Because love is being content of the things that are not only seen

But unseen

I think that I am not that sexy, otherwise I might have no reservations

Also, respect for myself is all I got

Perhaps if you are here maybe, or perhaps only in words

because words seep in the


If you still like me as I am, continue to write me

If you don’t, I shall presume you discarded me

I thank you for all your goodness

And the moments of inspiration

I am keeping you in my heart

If you stay, then I got a man

If you don’t, I’ve lost a friend that I’ve loved so much



To Kieth,

The best and the worst come to people

The fear of losing is a nightmare

Questions replies to quest for truth and lies

Breaking walls of sanity

I could not understand life sometimes

I could not unearth what it means

What remains vivid to me now is you

To cast away dark memories

And unkind shadows of life

Please tell me how do I get to know my cause

I am so troubled

I hope you are not playing games

Because it is in you that I find my peace

Yes I give you my heart, my life, and my soul

Cover me with your warmth

Kiss me with your breath

Embrace me in your arms

And let me sleep

Keep me

In your most gentle embrace

And kiss me like no other

Had kissed me

Melt my heart in your passion

And make me cry to flood the earth

Let me bleed in your tenderness

The hymn of the gentle breeze

I gasp for your every breath

So I could live

I am the other half of you

We breathe life together

All of me is yours

All of you is mine

We breathe life together

The throbbing heart its every breath

The flooding blood its every drop

We breathe life together

In GODs sanctuary of love.

All my love,

September 22, 2003

Dearest Ashra

I could never chain you to my heart

That would mean that you would


Be a prisoner to my love

I want willingly, you give your love to me

Your embrace is my wish

Your touch is my dream

Your love my salvation

All my love,


Dear Kieth

Just to let you know that I miss you so much

How could I ever forget the other half of my soul

I send you messages every now and then

Try to keep it in my memory

I love you more than I could love

The thought of you makes me feel so special

My Ashra,

I would willingly take you as my wife

You are my dream, my life

My heart is yours to have forever

My very existence is solely to serve you

And give you love


My Darling

You are constantly in my thoughts and dreams

If you want me to want you then want you I do

If you are mine then that is enough for me

Yes, I love you. Yes, you are my life

Yes I would have you forever in my arms

I could not break your marriage vows

They are sacred

I love you

You are in my heart always



Dear Kieth

I could not hide my awe in your poetry

I adore you

I seldom meet the words adore, devotion, salvation,

only, all, you alone, very last time,

among others.

The breathing pattern of your rhythm

Is so sweet and in synchronicity with the beating of every heartbeat

It is so real

May I know your birthday?



My Darling Ashra,

My thoughts hold nothing but you

My heart is filled with nothing but you

If we can be wed even if only in our

Thoughts then my darling we can be


Than lovers

My heart and my soul are yours,


My Kieth,

Wowwww….your scribble is great!

Yes, I love and adore you too

Tell me I’m the other half of your soul


If I’m not, I would have not known my purpose for living

If I’m not, I’d rather wither and die

If I’m not, my soul would be incomplete

I love and adore you,



My scribble is just drivel compared to your words

I both love and



You are my soulmate, my half without

Which I could not exist

I love you,


September 23, 2003


I have never been loved as much as you love me,

Never been loved

I have never been adored as much as you adore me,

Never been adored

I have never got a love so devoted

No love for me ;

You are my dream

You are my life

It is you that I live for.


My Gorgeous Ashra,

If we are to be wed, even in our thoughts,

We must decide where to live

My wish is only to be with you.

My love,


My sweetest of all loves

Your words are so sweet

You move me to the very depths of my soul

I do not deserve such love

Yet I gladly accept you as my wife,

If only in my dreams, for had


Met at

An earlier time I would surely have found

You and made you my own

I long for your touch

I yearn for you kisses

I ache for you each and everyday

You are my life and love

My bday is on the 30th of April

I am a hospital staff in UK


I love you so much

In life and death

Promise me your love is only for me

I would do anything as you please to make you happy

You take care and stay handsome for me darling

I love you alone


My Wonderful Ashra

We must live somewhere that means

An equidistant place between our

Present lands

Where we can live in the shelter of our love

Where we can make love as the sun

Slides slowly out of the sky

Sleep while the stars watch over us

And wake to make love with the

Rising sun

(my dream and my fantasy)


Get a house now where we could live


So we could be together even in thoughts

Your decision is my decision

I am excited where you will take me

I am not afraid

Because you are one with me

I give you my heart, my life, my all.

Can we have a house in America?

So it could be more realistic for you and me – where

Perhaps sometime we could really be together

Where we can never part

And together often, we’ll always be.

Where I could not function without you

And you without me

The two of us bonded together

Me only for you

And you only for me.


September 26, 2003

1. Now I have to think

2. My Husband

Fill in please

3.what would be my name

Dear Kieth

It makes me so sad, that you

Who are far away

Can make me happy even in thoughts

Yes, GOD has his reasons


To balance life with joy and sorrow

You who are the keeper of my soul


Me understand about life

You make my dreams come true

This is a miracle of love.

My Ashra

My writing talents pale beside your words

I have no great talent, but you are a wordsmith

Forging your thoughts into words, hammering

The words with your feelings

Like a blacksmith would produce

A sword or plough

A work of art which is produced only

By those with a gift

My words are yours, my heart is yours and

My thoughts are only of you

Maybe we are a little Romeo and Juliet,

I hope without the tragedy

If in any way I inspire you

Then my heart is gladdened

You my loved one are my reason for being

I am and always will be yours, if

You would have me.


I dream about the galaxy

And about the mountains

I dream of all the things that could be

As long as I am with you

I dream of not leaving your side

Not a blink of my eye will lose sight of you

I would not want anything more

but you

We would live in a shelter of our love

And make love

As the sun slides slowly out of the sky

In your cherished embrace

While the stars watch over us

Then, we would make love again

With the rising sun

Your embrace is my wish

Your embrace is my peace

In your arms I could die

I love you forever,


September 25, 2003

My writing talents pale beside your words

I have no great talent, but you are a wordsmith

Forging your thoughts into words, hammering

The words with your feelings

Like a blacksmith would produce

A sword or plough

A work of art which is produced only

By those with a gift

My words are yours, my heart is yours and

My thoughts are only of you

Maybe we are a little Romeo and Juliet,

I hope without the tragedy

If in any way I inspire you

Then my heart is gladdened

You my loved one are my reason for being

I am and always will be yours, if

You would have me.


I dream about the galaxy

And about the mountains

I dream of all the things that could be

As long as I am with you

I dream of not leaving your side

Not a blink of my eye

I would not want anything more

Nothing but you

We would live in a shelter of our love

And make love

As the sun slides slowly out of the sky

In your cherished embrace

While the stars watch over us

Then, peacefully we would make love again

With the rising sun

Your embrace is my wish

Your embrace is my peace

In your arms I could die

I love you forever,

September 25, 2003

My Beautiful Ashra,

I want you so much, may I ask to address you as my wife

You are everything to me, my love is for you and you alone

I wish that someday I would be allowed

To touch your flawless skin

And hold you in my arms

All my love always

My whole life would be devoted to your pleasure

I would never make you cry

You will only ever see and hear smiles and laughter

And only ever experience joy

These are my wishes for you my love

I love you and you alone,


My Husband Kieth,

Yes, you could touch me now

Touch my skin and feel every breath of my pore

See the marks of time

The beauty of my youth

The creases of my wisdom

Feel the fragrance and sweat of who I am

Kiss me with your breath

I want your every breath

Every beating of your heart

The gentleness of your love

Which had been a dream to me

A gift of your love

Touch me, yes touch me now

I am adored by your touch

Like a goddess

Who becomes a mortal in the name of love

To kneel to you

And become your slave

I kiss your feet.

My love forever,

September 26, 2003

Wished you were here

In the lament of my writing process

Together we could

Make up a fantasy

You who are my inspiration

Offer me every word to write

A bliss in my life

To cover my strife

I am nothing without you

My wish other than our writing

Would be to see each other sometime

As husband and wife

And while we go on

Our souls could never be parted

By distance. Together we are

Keeping promises

Keeping thoughts

Keeping each others breath

2. I am your wife

My thoughts are only of you

Naïve, fresh from the falls of Eden, this is my resurrection

I pray that you would love only me

Because you are mine now

If by chance there is another love

Then I would go, or perhaps stay again if you asked

To keep our covenant

If I get jealous my heart would sink

Into the deep

Form a boulder

Standing on seas

I could never be moved then

My grief would turn the sea red.

I am your wife

Love me as no one had ever loved me

Wind my heart

It is beating your name

Thanking GOD time you came

I am tired

Let me lie beside you now, my husband

Press your lips unto mine

Let me sleep in your most cherished embrace

Let me touch you

I desire you.

There is only one Salem,

I love you

September 23 2003

My Darling Wife

I am currently working three night shifts

So we might miss each other

For a

Short while

I will try and get on line to answer

Your mails but if I don’t please

Do not

Get angry or sad

I both love and adore you

My Darling Wife,

My love one, I adore you and hope that

Any union between us can be a


My love heart and soul are yours to do with

As you please

I ache for you each day

I am your devoted husband

Your words move me as no others have

I want to desire you even from afar

My love does not diminish

Even though it is just in dreams

I need you more each day

My love as always is yours

My wife whom I adore

My wish is to be one with you

Your are to me is one of the most beautiful woman on earth

I ask nothing more than to be loved by you

I am your servant and your lover to do with as you will

My love grows stronger everyday

September 27, 2003

My work as hospital officer is always hectic… always needed by people

People never

Stop being sick or injured

I have a Bachelor of Science degree which I obtained whilst working

I have never been polygamous, I am yours as long as you want me


My Dearest Ashra,

What wonderful words, they seem to fall

From your pen

You have a talent which I could never equal

I carry your words in my heart



September 29, 2003

I tried to check my emails tonight. I was so surprised that I got mails from you so soon. I was trying to catch you if you were online. But maybe you just did the mails. I am missing you my darling. Il will be waiting and sending you mail while you're away.

I know you are not polygamous…LOL. You make me believe that. LOL. Just be safe .

Thank you for your care. I could go nutsss, feeling you really are my husband. Maybe I’m crazy --- to die for you.


I am happy that you worked your way towards your dreams and goals in life
And study whilst you work….wow that’s great of you. You must be a real genius!

My Ashra

I have one wife …. You

My love always,

My Darling Ashra

I both want and need you

I ache for you touch, your words

And your love

I am yours forever

My love as always,


Dear Kieth

My body yearns for you

I am missing you so much

I love you


My Wife,

Please, please do not cry

I could not bear it if I was the cause of

Your tears

My heart and soul belongs to you

September 29, 2003


You could never be forgotten

You were always there for me

Your Bestfriend,

September 29 Monday

My Dear Wife

When I heard your voice it was as if angels were talking to me

I thought nothing could compare to your picture, your beauty is breathtaking

But your voice so pure and full of life moved me

I love you so much.

My Husband

I got so excited to hear your voice

I missed you, too

Yes you are my life and my reason for living

My heart is yours

My thoughts are yours

My soul is for you to keep

I could cry in happiness

I yearn for your embrace

I love you, my husband.

My Darling Ashra,

When I heard your voice I was lost for words

I have never been so happy

Please be mine and think my name

Let your love be for me

You are my sole thought through night and day

I would love to see you, I know in real life it would be impossible


I love you so much and I need you

More than ever.

My Love,

If I could turn back time to a day before

I would take you to be mine alone

My Darling Kieth,

May I ask for your address/location in UK if possible?

I am trying to review my geography. Wished it were me, so I could see the castles and get to go where you are –

Sometime maybe if there will be a miracle

I am praying sometime we could be in one place and be together for real

I am serious

Take care,

My Darling,

I live near to a place called Middlesbrough.

Or should I say halfway between Middlesbrough and Whitby

Whitby is the initial setting for the story by Bram Stoker, “Dracula.”

We have castles, ancient priories and scenery to die for…

the weather on the

North Yorkshire Moors this time of year

Has the most wonderful shade



If we could be in the same place for real at some point, I am sure

That I would get us arrested

I would not be able to keep myself in control, I

Would be unable to stop myself making love to you where we were.

I love you my darling.

My Husband,

Please think of me when you are in bed and asleep

Please think of me when you are awake

I want you and need you so badly

My heart aches

My love one, please take care.

Thank you for making me your own

Find union with your thoughts

I want to grow old with you

Take care of you

Age gracefully in your love

You are the other half of my soul.
On November 26, that same year Kieth and Ashra got wed in Sacred Heart Parish, Scotland. The honeymoon was spent in the Philippines. And then, they traveled to different parts of the world. Ashra died of heart failure and left Kieth with no son or daughter. After Ashra’s death, Kieth had his acres of farm planted with beautiful flowers and named the farm Lady Ashra Fields.

The End

Also published online by: LULU EBOOKS.com/ Falling In Love
Author: Rosalinda Flores – Martinez

http://Lulu Publishing, Ebooks.com

Monday, January 25, 2010

Desire by Paz Latorena; Pagnanasa salin ni Rose F. Martinez

Posted: January 24, 2010


Salin ni Rose Flores - Martinez
Propesor: Dr. Zeus Salazar
DLSU: MFACREA:Lit680 (Pagsasalin Pampanitikan)
April 7, 2001

Pantahanan siya. Ang labis na malapad na noo ay nagbigay sa kanyang mukha ng pangit, at panlalaking hitsura. Ang kanyang mga mata, na maliliit, hilis sa mga gilid, ay nagpapataka sa kanyang mga kakilala ng maaring siya ay may ga-patak na makalangit na dugo sa kanyang mga ugat. Ang kanyang ilong ay malapad at sarat, at ang mga butas ay bukang-buka , na para bagang nagsusumakit sa paghinga. Ang mga labi ay makapal, ay isang mahaba, matuwid na hiwa sa kanyang mukha, na ginawang parisukat ang anyo dulot ng di-pangkaraniwang laki ng kanyang mga panga.

Ngunit ang kalikasan, para bagang napahiya sa paghamak sa pagkagawa ng kanyang katawan ng may kakaibang ganda. Ganap ang kanyang hugis. Busog ang kanyang dibdib, at ang mga ito’y nakatayo na parang kambal na rosas na namumukadkad.
Balingkitan ang kanyang baywang tulad ng sa isang bata, tila nagnakaw ng gasuklay na hubog ng buwan ang kanyang mga balakang. Maganda ang hugis ng kanyang mga braso na nagtatapos sa mailiit na maga kamay na may pino at ga-kandilang mga daliri ay kina-iingitan ng kanayang mga kaibigan. Mga binting makikinis na bukongbukong ay nagpapaalala ng manekin sa bintanang salamin sa mga shop na suot ang usong medias na yari sa seda.

Ang katawan niya, ay kinauuhawan ng mga ambisyong iskultor, na nangarap at nakahubog sa mainit at masiklab na paglikha, na may mga kamay na nagigninig at may pangitain ng pagsikat para sa sarili. Ang katawan, na maaring kagalakan o kawalan ng pag-asa ng isang pintor na may gumigiray na brush sa bigong pagususmikap na mailarawan sa canvas ang napakagandang pagkakaisa ng mga hubog at guhit. Ang katawan, na maaaring kahibangan ng mga makata at mapanatiling- buhay sa makahulugang mga tula. Katawan niya na magpapasiya, para sa mga kalalakihan kahit papuntang impiyerno.

At ginawa nga nila. Ang mga kalalakihan na tumingin sa kanyang mukha ay inilayo ang kanilang mga mata; ay pinagmasdan ang kanyang katawan at sila ay nagpa-alipin. Nakalimutan nila ang malapad at panlalaking noo, ang mga matang malilit na nakahilis sa gilid, ng nakasusuyang bunganga, ang mabalasik na mga panga. Lahat na minatyagan ng kanilang mga mata ay ang katawan, ang mga balakang na nagnakaw ng gasuklay na hubog ng bagong buwan.

Ngunit kinasusuklaman niya ng kanyang katawan – kinsusuklaman ang alay ng Kalikasan ng bagay upang magsisi sa pagkagawa sa kanyang mukha. Kinasususlaman niya ang kanyang katawan sapagkat ginagawa nitong ang mga lalaki ay mapatingin sa kanya na may makulimlim na ilaw sa kanilang mga mata - mata man ng mga may asawa, mata ng mga kabinataan.

Pag-ibig ang gusto niya, gutom siya sa pagmamahal. Ngunit ayaw niya ng pag ibig na pinupukaw ng kanyang katawan. Hangad niya ang anuman na dalisay, malinis.

Nasusuya siya. At nasasaktan. Dahil sinabi ng kalalakihan na minamahal nila ang kababaihan, tiningnang malalim ng kanilang mga mata ang mga kaluluwa, ang mga boses mababa at marahan, ang mga kamay nanginginig sa timbang ng pagkagiliw. Ngunit sinabi ng kalalakihan na mahal nila ang kanyang katawan na may mga matang nagsasabing para bagang siya ay hubad, hinuhubarang walang takip ng kanilang makasalanan ang mga mata para titigan. Sinabi nila ang mga boses na tigib ng pagnanasa, hinawakan ng mga kamay na nag-aapoy, na pumapaso sa kanyang laman, pinupuno siya ng paghamak at pagkasuklam.

Gusto niyang siya ay mahalin katulad ng ibang mga babaeng minamahal. Mabuti siya, dalisay din na tulad nila. At sila ay pantahanan ding tulad niya. Ngunit wala silang magagandang katawan. Kaya nga minahal sila dahil sila ay sila.

Sadya, itinago niya sa mga mata ng mga kalalakihan ang magandang katawan na para sa kanya ay sumpa higit sa biyaya. Nagsimula siyang gumamit ng mahaba, malapad na panamit na lubos na magpapapangit sa kanya. Hindi na siya nagsuot ng ksuotang Filipino na gumuguhit sa kanyang katawan ng ganap na kawastuhan.

Hindi kaagad nalimutan ng mga kalalakihan ang kanyang katawan na kinaluguran nila. Ngunit sa pagdaan ng panahon nakagawian nila ang pagpapapangit ng mga damit at ipinalagay na siya ay naging mataba at walang pigura. Natamo niya ang gustong mangyari.

At marami. Dahil dumating ang pagkakataon ng mga kalalakihan ay tumitig sa kanya at inilayo ang mga mata, hindi dahil sa pangit nakaraan kundi dahil sa pagka-awa na sumasalamin doon. – pagkaawa para sa pantahanang mukha at walang pigurang bukol na mga laman.

Sa una siya ay masaya. Masaya siya dahil siya ay nagtagumpay sa pagpatay ng pangit na ilaw sa mga mata ng mga kalalakihan kapag sila ay tumitingin sa kanya.

Pagkalipas ng ilang panahon, mapanghimagsik siya. Dahil siya ay isang babae at gusto niya ang mahalin at magmahal. Ngunit wari ayaw ng mga kalalakihan ang mga babaeng may pambahay na mukha at walang piguranng bukol na laman.

Ngunit nakipagsundo siya sa kanyang pananampalataya. At lalo pa upang huwag maibalik ang pangit na ilaw sa mga mata ng mga kalalakihan, pinili niya ang makipaglaro … sa komedya.

Pinili niyang sumulat upang palipasin ang mahahabang mga gabi na ginugol niya sa malungkot na mga isipin ng pag-iisa.

Maliliit na bagay. Maiikli na tulang liriko. Maliliit na dibuho. Minsan, ang mga bagay nito ang tibok ng puso ng mga babae na gusto ng pagmamahal at matatamis na mga bulong sa kanya sa dilim. Minsan, iyon ang mga panunuya ng mga makakakita sa mga kahinaan at mga kahangalan ng mga lalaki at ng mundo sa pamamagitan ng mga matang pinapait ng kalungkutan.

Ipinadala niya ito sa mga diyaryo, na nakitang ang maliit ng mga bagay na ito ay maaaring tanggapin at ilathala. “Para punuan ang mga puwang,” sinabi niya sa sarili. Ngunit patuloy siyang sumulat dahil ginawa nitong makalimutan niya kahit paminsan-minsan ang kanyang buhay ng mapanglaw.

At siya at dumating nga sa buhay niya – ang lalaking may maputing dugo sa kanyang mga ugat. Isa siya sa mga nanininwala sa kababaan mg mga de-kulay na lahi. Ngunit may nakita siyang kakaiba at magaan at mapanuyang mga batikos mula sa panulat ng di kilalang may akda. Hindi sa maiikling tula . Hindi, sa palagay niya iyon ay kalabisan ng pagkamaramdamin ng isang babaing nasa lahi, ng mga taong walang ibang maisip na isulat kindi ang tungkol sa pag-ibig. Ngunit gusto niya ang mababaw at mahangin na mga panulain. Iyon ay katulad ng mga tao sa kanyang lahi.

Isang araw, noong wala siyang magawa, nagpadala siya, upang siya ay pasiglahin, ng isang sulat ng pagpapahalaga. Ito ay maiksi. Ngunit sa unang sulyap ay ipinakita sa kanya na ito ay galing sa isang lalaking may pinag-aralan.

Sinagot niya ito, isang magaan, malokong sagot na nasalat ang pagkamapatawa ng lalaking puti. Ito ang naging umpisa ng pagsusulatan. Sa pagdaraan ng panahon, lagi niyang binabantayan ang kartero para sa kulay-abong papel ng galing sa lalaking puti.

Tinanong niya ito upang makipagkita- para makiklala siya sa personal. Ang mga sulat ay tunay na nakasasabik. Ang unang bugso para sa kanya ay tumanggi. Isang mapait na ngiti ang pumaikot sa kanyang mga labi samantalang pinagmamasdan niyang mabuti ang kanyang mukha sa harap ng salamin. Ang lalaking puti ay mabibigo, sabi niya sa kanyang sarili.

Subalit siya ay sumang-ayon. Magkikita din sila sa malaon ma’t madaling panahon. Ang unang pagkikita ay tiyak na pagsubok at kapagdaka, ito’y matapos, mas mabuti.

Siya ang lalaking puti, galing sa lupa ng magaganda, bughaw-na matang mga babae, ay nagulat. Marahil, nakita niyang mahirap na iugnay ang pangit na babae sa isang nakasusulat ng kalugod-lugod na mga dibuho, mga nakasisiyang sulat.

Ngunit siya ay nakapag-sasalita ng mahusay. Mayroon konting ugat ng katatawanan, medyo nakatutuya kung minsan, sa lahat ng kanyang mga sinasabi. At ito ang nakaakit sa kanya.
Tinanong ng lalaking puti siya, at lumabas silang muli. Sa may dalampasigan ng Manila Bay, noong isang gabi, nang ang kanyang pantahanang mukha ay pinakislap ng liwanag sa paligid nila, nakalimutan niyang siya ay dalagang kayumanggi – pantahanan at sa buong hitsura, walang tabas na nilalang. Ang kanyang katahimikan, sa bahagyang nakapikit na mga mata ay nakatitig sa malayo, maamo at nasa ilalim ng kanyang nakauunawang pagdamay, natanto ng lalaking puti na siya ay nagkukuwento sa kanya ng tungkol sa tahanan sa ibang bansa, kung gaano niya kamahal ang pagka-bughaw na mga mata ng mga kababaihan sa kanyang sariling lupa. Sinabi ng lalaking puti ang kanyang pagmamahal sa dagat, at sana gugulin na lamang niya ang buhay sa dagat, palutang-lutang, patungo kung saan.

Nakinig siyang mabuti ng tahimik. Pagkatapos nagising ang puting lalaki sa balani, parang napahiya sa pagbulalas ng kompiyansam at idinagdag ng walang pitagang:

“Ngunit ikaw ay kakaiba sa ibang babae ng iyong lahi,” tinitingnang malalim ang kanyang mga matang hilis sa gilid.

Ngumiti siya. Natural siya nga ang pangit at walang-pigurang laman kung paano siya nakikita.

“Hindi, hindi ‘yan ang aking ibig sabihin,” ang kanyang pagtutol, pagdadakila sa kanayng mga isipan, “wala kang masyadong pakialam sa mga kaugalian. Walang Pilipina ang makikipag-kita sa isang lalaking puti na walang kasama simula pa lamang.”

“Ang isang pangit na dalaga ay maaaring suwayin ang mga kaugalian. Walang makikialam sa kanya kung gagawin niya ito. Iyan ang isang konsolasyon ng pagiging pangit,” ang kanyang marahang sagot.

Tumawa siya.

Marami kang kakatwang palagay,” ang kanyang puna.

“Dapat mayroon ako,” ang kanyang hagkis na sagot. “Kung wala ako, walang makakapansin sa akin, sa aking mukha at sa aking … aking katawan,” namumuhi siya sa kanayang sarili sa pagbigkas sa mga huling salita.

Tiningnan siya ng lalaking puti na walang pagtukoy, para bagang naghahanap ng kagandahan sa kanya.

Ngunit gusto kita,” ang paghatol ng lalaking puti, sinabi ng walang pakundangang pagtatapat.” Hindi pa ako nakababayakid ng kawili-wiling babae sa matagal na panahon.”

Nagkita silang muli. At muli, mga ideya. Masasayang mga paglingap ang kabuuan ng kanyang isipan. Nakakita na kaya siya ng isang kaluluwa na magugustuhan siya ng tapat? Dahil ang lalaking puti ay may pagtingin sa kanya, at handing maniwala. Bilang kaibigan, isang kasama na naiintindihan siya. At ang kaisipan ay binigyan siya – sa ganang hindi pa niya naranasan kahit noon.

Isanng araw, isang ideya ang kanyang naisipan – sadyang laging alaala niya. Ang lalaking puti ay nagmamahal ng magagandang bagay – ng kagandahan sa kahit na anong anyo. Napansin siya ito sa lahat ng kanyang mga pagkukuwento, sa bawat tingin, sa kanyang bawat galaw. Upang maipakita sa kanya na siya ay di-tunay na hubad sa kagandahan na kanyang sinasamba, ay may pumasok sa kanyang isipan.

Hindi ito makagagawa ng pinsala, sinabi niya sa kanyang sarili. Natutuhan ng lalaking ito na siya ay magustuhan dahil siya ay siya. Natutunan niya ring pahalagahan ang kanilang pagkakaibigan, pantahanan man siya at walang pigura sa kanyang buong akala. Walang tunay na halaga ang kanyang katawan ngayon. Ikalulugod marahil ng lalaking puti ang kanyang kagandahan ngunit hindi ito magiging kapansin-pansin para sa kanya.

Sa kailaliman ng napakalumang baul, ay binungkal niya ang isa sa mga manipis at makorteng mga bagay na nakatago doon sa maraming taon. Habang tinitingnan niya ang kanyang sarili sa salamin bago sila magpakita, ay masama ang loob na tinanggap niyang ang kanyang katawan ay walang kupas sa kinapootan niya ganda nito.

Namangha ang lalaking puti.

Totoong naigaya.

Sanay siya sa magandang mga katawan ng mga babae sa kanilang lipi, ikinumpisal niya na ang dalaga ay may di-pangkaraniwang ganda.

“Bakit mo itinago ang napakagandang hugis sa tagal ng panahon? Sinabi niya sa mapangutyang galit.

Hini ko alam na ito ay maganda,” nagsinulngaling siya.

“Pouff! Alam kong hindi akma na sabihin sa isang dalaga na siya ay sinungaling, kaya hindi ko gagawin. Ngunit… ngunit…”

“Ngunit…” ang takot ay simulang gumapang sa kanyang boses

“Mabuti pa… Mag-usap na lamang tayo ng ibang bagay.”

Bumuntong – hininga siya. Siya ay tama. Natagpuan niya ang isang lalaking walang pakialam sa kanyang katawan. Hindi niya kailangan ang babala. Natutuhan ng lalaking puti na siya ay magustuhan dahil siya ay siya.

At sa susunod nilang pagkikita, isinuot niya ang isang pusyawing rosas na kasuotang Filipino, na pinalambot ng kaymaggi sa kanyang balat. Kumislap ang kanyang mga mata sa pagtingin sa kanya, ngunit kung ito man ay ang pangit na ilaw na kanyang kinatatakutan, ay hindi niya napansin sapagkat ang tingin ay biglang nawala. Hindi, hindi ang madilim na ilaw. Ginusto niya ang dalaga dahil siya ay siya. Ang paniniwalang ito ang kanyang kinipkip.

Namasyal silang sakay sa labas ng lunsod, kung saan ang hangin ay banayad at presko at ang mga bambu ay nanabik sa pagmamahal sa simoy ng hangin. Binisita nila ang isang nipang tsapel sa tabi ng daan kung saan ang isang hubad na lalaki, nakapako sa krus, ay tumitingin sa kanila nga mga matang dala ang laha ng kalungkutan at pighati sa mundo – para sa mga kasalaanan ng mga lalaking naliligaw ng landas.

Tumingin siya sa imaheng nakadarama ng pagkalito at di-maipaliwanag na damdaming nagyayari sa kanya. Bumaling siya sa lalaking puti nang may pagkaawa at nalamang siya ay nakatitig sa kanya … sa kanyang katawan.

Bahagyang namula ang lalaking puti. Sa katahimikan iniwan nila ang maliit na tsapel. Tinulungan niya ang dalaga sa pagpasok sa oto ngunit hindi kaagad nitong pinaandar.

“Ma…Ma…Mahal kita…” sinabi niyang pautal matapos ang ilang sandali na itinulak ng malakas na puwersa. Pagkatapos ang lalaking puti ay tumigil.

Ang mga matang maliliit na hilis ay tunay na maganda, may ilaw at banayad habang tumingin sa kanya. Kaya mahal siya ng lalaking puti. Natutunana din kaya niya siyang mahalin hindi lamang magustuhan? Para sa dalaga. At ang kalahati ng kumpisal ay umaalingawngaw sa puso ng dalang gutom sa pag-ibig.

“Oo…” mayroong pagmamakaawa sa kanyang tinig.

Lumunok siya ng mabuti. Mahal… ko ang iyong katawan,” tinapos niya sa mababang boses. At ang bughaw na mga mata ay sumiklab kasama ng nakatakot, nakamumuhing ilaw.

Bumigkas ang dalaga ng hindi sinasadyang sigaw na pagtutol, ng sakit, ng maling akala. At pumakawala sa kanya ang paghikbi.

At natanto ng lalaking puti na nagkasala siya sa maliit na kayumangging babae na may pantahanang mukha at magandang katawan, at iyon ang pinakamassakit para sa kanya. At ang lalaking puti ay nagisisi, walang tigil sa pagsisisi.

Nang tumigil sila sa pinto ng bahay ng dalaga, lumabas ang lalaking puti para buksan ang pintuan ng kotse.

“Patawarin mo ako,” ang tanging nasabi ng lalaking puti.

May daigdig ng pagsisisi sa mga matang tumingin sa kanya.

“Para saan? Tinanong ng pagod na pahayag. “Naging tunay ka lamang na ikaw…katulad ng bang lalaki.” Napangiwi ang lalaking puti.

At sa pagtawang nakababagot, ang dalaga ay dumaan sa gitna.


Monday, January 18, 2010

Desire by Paz Latorena

January 11, 2010

by Paz Latorena

She was homely. A very broad forehead gave her face an unpleasant, masculine look. Her eyes, which were small, slanted at the corners and made many of her acquaintances wonder if perchance she had a few drops of celestial blood in her veins. Her nose was broad and flat, and its nostrils were always dilated, as if breathing were an effort. Her mouth, with thick lips, was a long, straight; gash across her face made angular by her unusually big jaws.

But nature, as if ashamed of her meanness in fashioning the face, moulded a body of unusual beauty. From her neck to her small feet, she was perfect. Her bust was full, and her breast rose up like twin roses in full bloom. Her waist was slim as a young girl’s her hips seemed to have stolen the curve of the crescent moon. Her arms were shapely ending in small hands with fine tapering fingers that were the envy of her friends. Her legs with their trim ankles reminded one of those lifeless things seen in shop windows displaying the latest silk stockings.

Hers was a body of a sculptor, athirst for glory, might have dreamt of and moulded in a feverish frenzy of creation, with hand atremble with a vision of the fame in store for him. Hers was a body that might have been the delight and despair of a painter whose feelings faltering brush tried in vain to depict on the canvass such a beautiful harmony of curves and lines. Hers was a body a poet might have raved over and immortalized in musical, fanciful verses. Hers was a body men would gladly have gone to hell for.

And they did. Men looked at her face and turned their eyes away; they looked at her body and were enslaved. They forget the broad masculine forehead, the small eyes that slanted at the corners, the unpleasant mouth, the aggressive jaws. All they had eyes for was that body, those hips that has stolen the curve of the crescent moon.

But she hated her body – hated that gift which Nature, in a fit of remorse for the wrong done to her face, had given her. She hated her body because it made men look at her with an unbeautiful light in their eyes – married eyes, single eyes.

She wanted love, was starved for it. But she did not want that love that her body inspired in men. She wanted something purer, cleaner.

She was disgusted. And hurt. For men told other women that they loved them looking deep into their eyes to the soul beneath their voices low and soft, their hands quivering with the weight of their tenderness. But men told her that they loved her body with eyes that made her feel as if she were naked, stripped bare of their simple eyes to gaze upon. They told her that with voices made thick with desire, touched her with hand afire, that scared her flesh, filling her with scorn and loathing.

She wanted to be loved as other women were loved. She was as good as pure as they. And some of them were as homely as she was. But they did not have beautiful bodies. And so they were loved for themselves.

Deliberately she set out to hide from the eyes of men the beautiful body that to her was a curse rather than a blessing. She started wearing long, wide dresses that completely disfigured her. She gave up wearing the Filipino costume which outlined her body with startling accuracy.

It took quite a time to make men forget that body that had once been their delight. But after a time they became accustomed to the disfiguring dresses and concluded she had become fate and shapeless. She accomplished the desired result.

And more.. For there came a time when men look at her and turned their eyes away, not with the unbeautiful light of former days but with something akin to pity mirrored there –pity for a homely face and a shapeless mass of flesh.

At first she was glad. Glad that she had succeeded in extinguishing that unbeautiful light in the eyes of men when they looked at her.

After some time, she became rebellious. For she was a woman and she wanted to be loved and to love. But it seemed that men would not have anything to do with a woman with a homely face and an apparently shapeless mass of flesh.

But she became reconciled to her fate. And rather than bring back that unbeautiful light in men’s eyes, she chose to go … with the farce.

She turned to writing to while away the long nights spent brooding all alone.

Little things. Little lyrics. Little sketches. Sometimes they were the heart throbs of a woman who wanted love and sweet things whispered to her in the dark.. Sometimes, they were the ironies of one who sees all the weaknesses and stupidities of men and the world through eye made bitter by loneliness.

She sent them to papers which found the little things acceptable and published them, “To fill space,” she told herself. But she continued to write because it made her forget once in a while how drab her life was.

And then came into her life – a man with white blood in his veins. He was one of those who believed in the inferiority of colored races. But he found something unusual in the light, ironic tirades from the pen of the unknown writer. Not in the little lyrics. No, he thought that those were superfluous effusions of a woman belonging to a race of people who could not think of writing about anything except love. But he liked the light airy sketches. They were like those of the people of his race.

One day, when he had nothing to do, he sent her, to encourage her, a note of appreciation. It was brief, but the first glance showed her that it came from cultured man.

She answered it, a light, nonsensical answer that touched the sense of humor of the white man. That started a correspondence. In the course of time, she came to watch for the mail carrier for the gray tinted stationery that was his.

He asked to see her – to know her personally. Letters were so tantalizing. Her first impulse was to say no. A bitter smile hovered about her lips as she surveyed her face before the mirror. He would be disappointed, she told herself.

But she consented. They would have to meet sooner or later. The first meeting would surely be trial and the sooner it was over, the better.

He, the white man, coming from a land of fair, blue-eyed women, was shocked. Perhaps, he found it a bit difficult to associate this homely woman with one who could write such delightful sketches, such delightful letters.

But she could talk rather well. There was a light vein of humor, faintly ironical at times, in everything she said. And that delighted him.

He asked her to come out with him again. By the shore of Manila Bay one early evening, when her homely face was softened by the darkness around them, he forgot that he was a white man, that she was a brown maiden – a homely and to all appearances, shapeless creature at that. Her silence, as with half closed eyes she gazed at the distance, was very soothing and under the spell of her understanding sympathy, he found himself telling her of his home way over the seas, how he loved the blue of the sea on early morning because it reminded of the blue of the eyes of the women of his native land. He told her of his love of the sea, for the waves that dashed against the rocks in impotent fury, how he could spend his life on the water, sailing on and on, to unknown and uncharted seas.

She listened to him silently. Then he woke up from the spell and, as if ashamed of the outburst of confidence, added irrelevantly:

“But you are different from the other women of your race,” looking deep into her small eyes that slanted at the corners.

She smiled. Of course she was, the homely and shapeless mass of flesh that he saw her to be.

No, I do not mean that, “he protested, divining her thoughts, “you do not seem to care much for convention. No Filipino girl would go out unchaperoned with a man, a white mad at that.”

“A homely woman can very well afford to break conventions. Nobody minds her if she does. That is one consolation of being homely,” was her calmly reply.

He laughed.

“You have some very queer ideas,” he observed.

“I should have,” she retorted. “If I didn’t nobody would notice me with my face and my … my figure,” she hated herself for stammering the last words.

He looked at her impersonally, as if trying to find some beauty in her.

“But I like you,” was his verdict, uttered with the almost brutal frankness in his race. “I have not come across a more interesting girl for a long time.”

They met, again. And again. Thoughts, pleasant thoughts, began to fill her mind. Had she at last found one who liked her sincerely? For he liked her, that she was ready to believe. As a friend, a pal who understood him. And the though gave her happiness – a friend, a pal who understood him – such as she had never experienced before.

One day, an idea took hold of her – simply obsesses her. He was such a lover of beautiful things – of beauty in any form. She noticed that in all his conversations, in very look, every gesture of his. A desire to show him that she was not entirely devoid of beauty which he worshipped came over her.

It would not do any harm, she told herself. He had learned to like her for herself. He had leaned to value their friendship, homely as she was shapeless as he thought her to be. Her body would matter not at all now. It would please the aesthete in him perhaps, but it certainly would not matter much to the man.

From the bottom of a very old truck, she unearthed one of those flimsy, shapedly things tha had lain there unused for many years. As she looked at herself in the mirror before the appointment, she grudgingly admitted that her body had lost nothing of its hated beauty.

He was surprised. Pleasantly so.

Accustomed as he was to the beautiful bodies of the women of his race, he had to confess that there was something of unusual beauty.

“Why have you been hiding such a beautiful figure all this time,” he demanded in mock anger.

“I did not know it was beautiful,” she lied.

“Pouff! I know it is not polite to tell a young lady she is a liar so I won’t do it. But… but…”

“But…” fear was beginning to creep into her voice.

“Well… Let us talk of something else.”

She heaved in a deep sigh. She was right. She had found a man to whom her body mattered little if anything at all. She need not take warning. He had learned to like her for herself.

At their next meeting she wore a pale rose Filipino dress that softened the brown of her skin. His eyes lighted up when they rested on her, but whether it was the unbeautiful light that she dreaded so much, she could not determine for it quickly disappeared. No, it could not be the unbeautiful light. He liked her for herself. This belief she treasured fondly.

They had a nice long ride out in the country, where the winds were soft and faintly scented and the bamboo tress sighed love to the breeze. They visited a little our of the way nipa chapel by the roadside where a naked Man, nailed to the Cross, looked at them with eyes which held all the tragedy and sorrow of the world – for the sins of sinning men.

She gazed at the figure feeling something vague and incomprehensible stirring within her. She turned to him for sympathy and found him staring at her… at her body.

He turned slightly red. In silence they left the little chapel. He helped her inside the car but did not start it at once.

“I… I… love…” he stammered after some moment, as if impelled by an irresistible force. Then he stopped.

The small eyes that slanted at the corners were almost beautiful with a tender, soft light as she turned them on hi. So he loved her. Had he learned not only to like her but to love her? For herself. And the half finished confession found an echo in the heart of the woman who was starved for love.

“Yes…” there was a pleading note in her voice.

He swallowed hard. “I love…. Your body.” He finished with a thick voice: And the blue eyes flared with the dreaded, hateful light.

She uttered an involuntary cry of protest, of pain of disillusion. And then a sob escaped her.

And dimly the man from the West realized that he had wronged this little brown maiden with a homely face and the beautiful body as she never had been wronged before. And he felt sorry, infinitely so.

When they stopped before the door of her house, he got out to open the door for her.

“I am sorry,” was all he said.

There was a world of regret in the eyes she turned on him.

“For what?” she asked in a tired voice. “You have just been yourself… like other men.” He winced.

And with a weary smile she passed within.


compiled by: Rose Flores - Martinez

Hansel and Gretel9