Curiosity Knows No Boundaries

Jose Garcia Villa 55 Poems

Philosophica / Pilosopika Tula 51

By: J. Villa

I will break God's seamless skull,
And I will break His kissless mouth,
O I'll break out of His faultless shell
And fall me upon Eve's gold mouth.

I will pound against His skull,
I will crack it by my force of love:
I'll be a cyclone gale and spill
Me out of His bounding groove.

I'll be upon Eve, upon Eve,
Upon Eve and her coasts of love!
I'll be upon Eve, upon Eve,

Cataract of Adamhood. There would I be
My Lord! there would I rebuild me Thee
There alone find my Finality.


Translated By: H. Francia

Babasagin Ko ang bungong walang dugtong ni Bathala,
At babasagin Ko ang Kanyang walang-halik na bibig,
O Ako'y lalabas sa Kanyang walang-kasiraang balat
At ilalapag ang aking sarili sa gintong bibig ni Eba.

Kakalampagin Ko ang Kanyang bungo,
Palalagutukin Ko ito sa lakas ng aking pagibig:
At Ako'y magiging isang sigabo ng unos at ililigwak
Ang aking sarili sa labas ng Kanyang masaklawing ukit.

Ako'y pasasa-ibabaw ni Eba, sa ibabaw ni Eba,
Sa ibabaw ni Eba at ang kanyang mga baybay ng pagibig!
Ako'y pasasa-ibabaw ni Eba, sa ibabaw ni Eba,

Ang katarata ng PagkaAdan. Doon ang aking hantungan
Aking Panginoon! Doon Kita muling ipagtatayuan
Doon lamang matatagpuan ang aking Katapusan.

Philosophica / Pilosopika Tula 50

By: J. Villa

All in the name of you whom I love
Terribly not.
Therefore I love you.
I love you very undearly.
I love you most impossibly.

Then the marriage of our true minds must
Certainly be not.
Therefore we must get married.
We must get married as soon as not possible.

And as soon as the year is not over
To unname the child
And unbaptize him for his dear sake.
We will give a party for whoever
Will not be there.

Translated By: H. Francia

Lahat sa ngalan mo na iniibig Ko
Nang kagulat-gulat na hindi.
Samakatuwid iniibig kita.
Iniibig kita ng lubhang di-magiliw.
Iniibig kita ng pinaka-di-maaari.

Kung gayon ang kasal ng ating mga tunay na pag-iisip ay
Kailangang maging tiyak na hindi.
Samakatuwid kailangang makasal tayo.
Kailangang makasal tayo sa lalong mabagal na panahon.
Kailangang makasal tayo sa sandaling hindi maaari.

At sa sandaling ang taon ay hindi matapos
Ay di-panganlan ang Bata
At di-binyagan siya alang-alang sa mahal niyang sarili.
Magbibigay tayo ng isang salu-salo para sa sinumang
Hindi naroroon.

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Jose Garcia Villa

Citattion of the National Artist Award conferred on Jose Garcia Villa by the Philippine Government

on June 12, 1973

Jose Garcia Villa is one of the finest contemporary poets regardless of race or language. When Have Come , Am Here, the first of his poems to be published in the West, broke upon the surprised consciousness of readers, it was immediately acclaimed for its beauty of language, intensity of thought and a fierce religious spirit absent in the poetry of his age.

Villa's theme are universal- the meaning of self, man's combat with God, the passion of love. He inhabits a timeless world, like the great poets of any language. and rise the ultimate questions about the meaning of life.

The center of Villa's universe is man, the puny inhabitant of a tiny planet, and the poet measures him fearlessly in the scale of perfection, which is God. He affirms God with a lyric exaltation allied to the religious mystics. Yet, on behalf of man, he challeges God in a daring afirmation that the creature made in His image contains in himself the seeds of His perfection.

To the art of poetry Villa introduced the reversed consonance ryhme scheme for greater subtlety and discipline, and the "comma poems" which glorify the punctuation mark by a strangely innovative functional and poetic use.

Villa's poems are distillates of wisdom and passion, couched in language of grave beauty and measured grace. In the country of the poet's imagination, word and thought often have a fresh but baffling "strangeness." This surely springs from the mixed Filipino cultural heritage which shapes the contours of the poet's thoughts and confers on his created language its characteristic ring and flavor. With Villa the Philippines is fixed firmly on the literary map of the world.


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