10 beautiful lines from Philippine literature

There's nothing more beautiful than reading fictionalized history—in poetry or prose—than in the language and culture that you are most familiar with.

Local literature introduces personas you can strongly identify yourself in, as they are immersed in the same realities you face everyday, giving a sense of shared frustrations, proximity and history. Its narratives contain in them the very nature of Filipino brilliance and hopes.

These are just some pieces of Philippine literature that in its vivid sagacity compels you to ponder on its beautifully stringed questions, and, sometimes, alters your reality as its words are able to compose things into a new light of existence.

"Wisdom and the past are never one"

—Addressed to himself, Cirilo F. Bautista

"So all these years—since when?—he had been seeing the light of dead stars, long extinguished, yet seemingly still in their appointed places in the heavens."

—Dead Stars, Paz Marquez Benitez

"And when her lips sought yours again you understood the consequences of victory. There was your prize, sharing your breath."

—Steps, Dean Francis Alfar

"What is human existence? I wish mine were littered with adventures that curdle the mind, experiences that pump adrenaline into my system, but there is never enough of these, particularly in the city."

—Dream Videos, F. Sionil Jose

"Of all love's puzzles, this is the most puzzling: the intersection of paths that begin so far away from each other it seems impossible they could ever cross."

—It's always news; Or boy gets girl, Nick Joaquin

"There are more emotion in history 

than anyone would assert or acknowledge."

—Constantino Tejero

"Looking back, I realize everything of it

was perfect—your eyes shy at the briefest
touching with mine, the way we avoided
this love which was meant to be bigger
than us, following us towards the daylight,
blessing the corridors of a beautiful world—

in a way not one of us could ever predict."

—Negros Museum, June 13, Carlomar Arcangel Daoana

"I GOT THE PRESENT (but I yearn for history and I worry about the future and often find myself intrigued by what-ifs, mooning over or crying over what-could-have-beens)."

—Simply Complex, AA Patawaran

"Here is one last faith in metaphor.

That it must do what it's meant to,
and draw you near.
Abstraction is the silence of skin:"

—Braille, Mookie Katigbak-Lacuesta

"The reader despairing enough, desperate enough, to plunder countless pages to look for a sentence to describe her, to scribble her wanting in the margins of her fictions"

—Read and want, Sasha Martinez

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