Travails

IN THE THROES OF ONDOY

(Tropical Storm ONDOY devastated
Metro Manila in September 2009)

One month of rain poured in six hours –
Metro-Manila folks thought Ondoy was just
One of those tropical storms that normally
Pass the country during this time of the year

Between tropic chores and arctic complacency
The sober rich and the somber poor went about
Their usual routine, heedless, moreso amidst the
So-called economic crunch besetting the country

In a nation rocked by endless socio-political scandals
And inured by pointless neo-parochial intramurals
Weather concerns would take backseat of priorities
Whether or not people really care, is another issue

The rapid rising of floodwaters to record levels
Caught everyone flatfooted… And as serious toll
On life and property mounts, so does an urgent call —
“We must not ignore climate change: Wake up! Wake up!”

And yet, Ondoy was relatively tamer than the walloping
Reming which devastated Bicol Region in 2006 when
Whiplashing winds, rampaging volcanic mudflows and
Swirling waters, swelling floods wrought havoc untold

We who survived the wrathful fury of haunting Reming
Must take heed and advocate; the thousands who perished
In the wake of Bicol’s worst disaster could tell tales no more
Still, their deafening silence echoes in the throes of Ondoy.

(c) 2009 Chito L. Aguilar

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-5T-7PuORH0

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