Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Tribal War (From Cabalza's Collection of Poems 2000)

Copyright © 2010 by Chester B. Cabalza

“Let the warrior be a warrior”

It was by respect, nothing lost in death
Voyage of courage in Chico River
Enacted heroism of Macliing Dulag
When death attributed to ancestors
And spirits lifted against debtors

In Cordillera see the mountain trails
Thieves in caves, limestone hills in Sagada
Stolen coffins, desecrated burial grounds.
Condemned wrath and power of gods.
The terror of tribal war - void nightmare

You sowed head hunting. Did you reap justice?
Bodong system? A curse of blood compact
Fierce you may be! Then warriors were warriors
For the sake of ancestors, spirits, tribes

Undoubted your ritual Mombaki
Atop mountains enriched unique culture
Tribal wars! For vengeance brother’s brothers
Stop! Though (mountains are sacred burial grounds)

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