About that Wislawa Szymborska line (i.e., 27th birthday)

*November 6, 2020 A few weeks before November 6, the poem Possibilities by Wislawa Szymborska came to me like a directive: “I prefer, where love’s concerned, nonspecific anniversaries/ that can be celebrated every day […] I prefer not to ask how much longer and when./ I prefer keeping in mind even the possibility/ that existence has its …

Book review on March 2020: Women, women, women

Apologies for the two-month delay of this blog post. March had been a terrible month as it was the onset of the community quarantine; April was more terrible with weeks of self-imposed internet disconnection; May is a month when I’m struggling to stabilize everything that had happened to me and to the world, and I’m …

Disposing of/holding on

I was first introduced to Marie Kondo last year when I once received messages of friends asking me to adopt the wacky socks they do not want to use anymore.  Marie Kondo has become a household name, so phenomenal that she has become more of a verb than a figure. To ‘Marie Kondo,’ as how …

Dear diary, and other musings

Dear diary,  I’m not sure when you’d be tired listening to the things I carry and to my intrusive thoughts. A lot of people have quit because I am a liability, and I am glad you are neither a people nor a ghost. Well, you really have no choice. And worry not, you won’t read …

Are the K-12 kids alright? Like really?

Case A: I have a friend in HUMSS or Humanities and Social Sciences, who always whines about her projects in creative writing. The requirements from the course make her both inadequate and worn out. Responding to her complaints, I occasionally pretend to be a heartless clown by saying creative writing at her age – like spelling …

Book Duke appreciation tweets: A book haul

Come to Book Duke’s Facebook page! Also, I wrote an earlier post about my Book Duke book haul. Don’t miss laughing at it! Books I bought: Brief Interviews with Hideous Men – David Foster Wallace Another Country – James Baldwin Tell Me How Long the Train’s Been Gone – James Baldwin Black Orchid – Neil …

Teaching martial law period literature in the era of post-truth

Pressing are the current times when students are led to believe the “convenient truths” on the President Marcos debate. Despite substantial studies proving the oppression during the Martial Law period, the students’ emotions are won over by apologists whose tweaked narratives renounce common sense. In the age of devaluing reason and glorifying propaganda, literature teachers should …

Happy 20th birthday, Interpreter of Maladies!

I encountered Jhumpa Lahiri’s cadence in graduate school when we’re asked to read the beginning short story “A Temporary Matter” in the light of postmodernist criticism. I forgot how I answered that examination on comparative literature. What I remembered was sweat excreting on my palms. I guess reading under pressure is not a wonderful reading …

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