Dead Weight: In Memoriam
(Ferdinand E. Marcos, 11 September 1917-28 September 1989)
A death that stuns the wheels of government
And carves enmity in the hearts of men—
How do we sing the darkness in this thing?
There is a need to fix our voice against
The weight of our loss, so that all in all,
As we polish the weapons to blast the threat
Of his ghost, our discourse does not disclose
Our kinship with his blood, but from monstrous
Corners of memory bring out poisoned
Phrases to fling at his flesh—“Thief,” “Scoundrel,”
“Usurper of heritage”—those terrible
Maledictions he finely deserves, so much
Did he trick us in his long governance.
We will yield no quarter in this noble fight
To cleanse history of his stench! Let him rot
Abroad, let his brood burn in our anger’s heat,
Let us persecute his friends—those blind lackeys
Who still lick his prints! An eye for an eye. . .
Bah! He started it all, and the law upholds
The virtue of our violence. Let us then
Be firm: our vision of one happy nation
Founded on Faith, Honor and Justice must not
Be shaken by this abominable
Carcass or the pleadings of his clan—lock
The waterways, patrol the air, check the land—
He Must Not Come Home, He Must Not Rest in Peace!
(1 October 1989)