POUND-FOR-POUND PACMAN (My Tribute to Manny Pacquiao)

(Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao: Illustrious Filipino Boxer,
International Boxing Champion, Holder of 7 World Titles)

The stinging punch of sheer poverty made him a boxer —
He labored as construction worker in General Santos City
And sold bread in the streets to support his poor family
His austere life, thin as the belt around his lean stomach

Restless at 15, with pockets nil he boarded boat for Manila
Bent in a bid to knockdown wanton paucity, he wore gloves
And punched his way in the ring; from small-time opponents
To big-time adversaries, his ferocious rapidity felled them all

From obscurity to posterity, he evolved by huffs and puffs
He trained and strained till his fists are as quick as lightning
His jabs and punches are lethal and his left hook is ever fatal
He can knock out a foe in split second, with stunning speed

Like bread he once peddled, Manny Pacquiao rose, baked in
Oven of Toil, the boxing ring-of-fire where only the toughest
Survive the slog and slug; where training and discipline count
Where there is humiliation in defeat and glory in punishment

The tale of the tape tells it round-by-round, pound-for-pound
He humbled Mexican and Anglican alike, on the canvass floor
His once thin belt thickens to champion’s belt fight after fight
An unknown local became a celebrity-international, by boxing

He returns to his Philippines, a hero amidst cheering crowds
Politicians try to tempt and preempt him to join their politics
He faces all controversies as mere punching bags, no big deal
Showbiz feasts on his fame; his commercial endorsements rain

Between fights, he tends to his fighting cocks and plays billiards
He bonds with his family and attends to his diverse businesses
Providing employment to local folks. He is enrolled in college –
He shuttles between TV shows and tapings or stays in his estate

What made him what he is now? A concoction of guts and glut:
The fangs of dearth; pangs of fights; prayers of his Mama Dionisia
The pains of rigid workouts; the gains from trainer Freddie Roach
Trade of promoters; tirade of hecklers; the blitz and glitz of media

Baker to boxer, he leavened acclaim and honor to our country
From rags to riches, he became an icon and idol of the masses
From travails to triumphs, he reigns supreme World Champion
Yes, the story of Manny Pacquiao will be told for all generations.

© 2009 Chito L. Aguilar



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