The LR Postcard Project: #009

#009 Front
#009 Back + Insert

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Postcard #009
Poet: Mariailona A. Panaligan

Papang Wore Fedora Hats

They were similar to the ones I
saw on the American TV
The scratch pixels waving
incandescently like a cheap
I’d watch the white men move around
the 4:3 in their pastel
colored suits, beltlines hiked up so
high that each cuffed polyester
pant leg flooded.
It seemed hot where they were,
a different hot from our home
in Muntinlupa.
The sun was always beaming
in its flecked way as the
tongue of each ray licked
the skin of the men on
the TV making them look
oily and sticky.
But on the hot days we knew,
the sun had a different familiar
face. I basked in it, dangling
my purple chinelas amply as I
sat on your lap eating ripened
mangos and bayabas. Or on a
really good day, you’d take me
to the corner vendor and buy
me Chippy with some Coke in a
bag that had a rubber band
wrapped loosely around a clear
straw sticking out from
the top, keeping it in place
for drinking. And you would hoist
me on your shoulders and hold the
Coke in a bag so I didn’t spill a single
sugary drop—
andIwould listen to the
crunching of each chip between
my ears one by one by one

as Papang whistled, I watched
the blue brim of his fedora
like the horizon.

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Thank you to all who participated in the 2011 LR Postcard Project.

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