Iamd1’s Scribbling Desk

Poetry in Two Tongues (poems written in Waray with English translation/version)

My Mother’s Eyebrows

After bathing and dressing up,

she goes to the dresser,  faces the mirror

– and the beauty ritual she does each morning commences.

I’ve been watching this scene since childhood.

Never missing a day, specially the most important –

the part when her eyebrows are done.

If she woke up feeling good –

perhaps from sweet dreams

or maybe Dad has not been naughty,

her eyebrows are easily balanced –

the arch, the thickness and length

drawn exactly to her satisfaction.

In an instant, she’s a beauty

and I know the day will be sunny.

But I get wary when the eyebrows look like

the wings of a raven in flight.

Immediately I seek shelter ‘cause I’m sure

there’s a forthcoming downpour,

or maybe even a storm…….

I grew up knowing one thing –

the eyebrows of my mother are

the barometers of the weather at home.

*  *  *

An Kiray Ni Nanay

Kahuman niya karigo ngan magliwan

nadiretso ha tocador, ha espeho naatubang.

Magtitikang an rituales han pagpahusay

nga kada aga gin bubuhat ni Nanay.

Guti-ay pa ako gin susundan ko na

ini nga kirita-on, labi na ang pinaka-importante –

kun natapos na an iya kiray.

Kun maupay an buot han pagmata,

tingali matam-is an inop

o hi Tatay waray magpinasaway,

madali nababalanse an duha nga kiray –

eksakto la an kurbada han arko, kadakmul ngan kahilaba.

Na-gwapa dayon hiya, ngan nasabot ako

masirak an adlaw ha am panimalay.

Pero nag-iikmat ako kun an kiray

baga hin mga pako han uwak nga naglilinupad ha kalangitan.

Nangi-ngita ako dayon hin masisirongan

kay sigurado mabunok, bangin pa bumagyok ha amon.

Tinmubo ako sayod an usa nga butang –

An barometro han panahon ha balay

Amo an kiray ni Nanay.

*  *  *

When the Rains Stop

The rain keeps falling

and the gleeful children

cavort like frogs after

the long summer drought.

I search for a little boy

sailing paperboats in the puddles.

but he’s gone – the joker that is

Time took him to the bigger

playground of Life….

too engrossed, he forgot to come back.

But sometimes,

when little hands prod for help with

paperboats and sailing them

in the muddy waters –

the man is a boy again,

tireless at play and soaking in the rain.

At nightfall, he sadly vanishes

on hearing the cacophony

of frogs in concert

when the rains stop.

*  *  *

Paghuraw han Uran

Sige la’t pag-inuran,

maglipayon an kabataan

nga baga hin mga pakla

pagkahuman han halaba nga huraw.

Guin bibiling ko hi Idoy nga

nagpipinalutaw hin papel nga baruto.

Waray na hiya – guin kuha han

ma-intremis nga panahon nga di pa takda

para magmulay didto ha mas dako nga

murulayan han kinabuhi.

Namalanga  – waray na   umuli.

Pero usahay nanunumdum, nabalik kun

kinukubit hin guti-ay nga kamot nga

napabulig paghimo hin papel nga baroto

ngan napaopod pagpalutaw hini ha lasaw.

Nabalik an kasanhi

hi Mano – Idoy na liwat

waray kaguolan bisan

mahulos hin pagminulay.

Pagsirom, nawara hi Idoy

pakabati niya han nagkikinayabag

na konsyerto   han  mga pakla

paghuraw han uran……….

*   *   *

An Imo Mga Rosas

imo ako guin padad-an

hin mga nagpupurula ngan

naghaharamot  nga rosas.

Han akon pagdalidali mabasa

an lakip nga surat,

natunok an akon tudlo,

dayon la an papel nagkadurugo

ngan nabasa ko

an waray mo isurat nga linya

– an diri mo pagsaad hin

waray mga tunok nga rosas…..

Bisan pa man

an imo halad akon guin karawat

kaupod han kinasing-kasing nga pagpasalamat

kay diri plastik nga bukad

an imo hinatag.

Your Roses


You sent me a bouquet

of sweet-scented red roses.

And in my hurry to read your note,

I pricked a finger and

on bloodstained paper

got the message you never wrote –

You didn’t promise me

roses without thorns.

Even so, I accept your offering

with heartfelt thanks that

the roses you gave me are real

and not plastic ones.

*  *  *


Nangaturog ako paghinulat

ha imo kagab-i. Nag-iininop,

nga imo ginsinampit.

han kasina ko nga an inop

waray kahuman, gin talikdan ta

ikaw ngan bimalik pagkaturog.

Pagmata ko kanina nakalakat ka na.

Didto ha lamesa gin paso mo,

gin upay hin paglatag an magrasa

nga pagkaon para han ak pamahaw.

May lakip pa gud nga plastic nga bukad

An im halipot nga surat nangangaro hin pasaylo.

Duro an ak kagutom pero dayon la binalik

an akon gin ininop – hi Nanay nga nagsisinagdon

“Uday, pagsalin bisan la guti-ay.”

Ha ak hunahuna, gin baton ko hiya –

“Ayaw ka baraka, diri la salin nga guti-ay –

Kay bug-os pa an ak pagkatawo, Nanay!”

Gin limpyohan ko an lamesa

ha plastic bag gin butang an imo dara

Ika-lilipay ini han mga ayam ni uga-ngan.

Ngan tikang yana, usa la it ak hangyo –

ayaw ako dad-i hin bisan ano,

kay gabay na la waray kung salin la ito.

*  *  *

(the English translation)


I fell asleep waiting for you to come home.

Then in the midst of a dream

you woke me up.

I was so mad at the interruption –

I turned away from you and went back to sleep.

When I woke up, you had left.

Breakfast was waiting at the table

– the warmed up left-overs you’d brought home

Pleasantly set, complete with a plastic bloom

And I-am-sorry note….

I was so hungry but the dream I had came back.

It was Mom advising me to leave even just

a bit for myself. In my mind, I replied –

‘Don’t worry Mother, I have – not just a bit

for all of me’s still here’.

I cleared up the table, the food

I stuffed into a plastic bag.

It’ll make mom-in-law’s doggie happy.

But do me a favor –

no more bring-home please –

‘cause I’d rather have nothing

if they be just leavings.

*  *  *


12 Responses to "Poetry in Two Tongues (poems written in Waray with English translation/version)"


Makaruruyag! Postarawo nga mga pulong! Puno ka hin talento!
Karuyag ko liwat makabasa hin siday nga Warlish or should it be Waraylish?


Thanks for coming by Joe….
I can write Waraylish but this was a contest entry, so it had to be in pure Waray.
Corresponding with you thru those reminiscings helped me out with some forgotten words.
Really grateful to the group.


Thank you, so much! You’ve got a lot of talent. It is wonderful you have the ability and capacity to put into meaningful words, moments, that others, me for one, would just gloss over as just one of those inconsequential events of our life.

Hope you keep writing. Maybe you should compile them in a book . . .


thanks Rawie!
i have publishing in mind….but i have to work on some more poems and scout around for a grant.

Well done…LOVE IT!!!!!Keep on writing..I agree with Rawie.

Thanks Mila!
It’s the least I can do for my overseas friends who get homesick for waray-waray.

Three of the poems here (Waray-waray version) were part of the suite of poems that won first prize in the first Pasidungog Eduardo Makabenta Sr. para han Siday in Oct. 2010.

Totally blown me away. A talent wriiten in the stars.

Thank you Dolly…
I hope to publish my waray poetry collection one of these days…

gusto ko unta mbaro pa han damo pa nga mga pulong nga gingagamit ha kada adlaw-adlaw, para hit akon pgtotdo hit syahan na grado, pinaagi han iyo bulig. Salamat. More powers!

Hi! I am a literature teacher teaching local literary works to my students appreciating local poetry. Your poetry is very helpful. Each one is beautiful and my students love it!!!! I hope you don’t mind me sharing it to my class.

Great job!!!

It’s my pleasure to share as well as to introduce Waray literature to everyone interested. Thanks for coming by this site.

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