Songs of Eretz Poetry Review is pleased to present “Shelter” and “Waking Up” by Romalyn Ante. Ms. Ante was born in Lipa City, Philippines. She was educated in England and currently works as a nurse. She enjoys writing when she is not working at the hospital. Her poems and stories have appeared in the anthology We’re All In This Together (Offa’s Press), The Cannon’s Mouth Issue 47, and Blakenhall Words (2013). She has also performed her poetry at Wolverhampton City Voices and Stafford Arts Festival 2013 in the United Kingdom.
I run barefoot in the field -
Is caught between my toes,
Bursting mangoes quilt the grove
While each blade of grass
Gleams in morning dew.
Hangs like jasmines -
Tending your path towards me.
I let my hair flutter in the wind
As I swing in an ancient tree.
There you are the wind
And I, waters of the river.
Together we create tiny ripples -
With beauty that charms everything.
One early morning
When you were still asleep
My lips touched
Your clammy forehead -
I inhaled your salty skin
And I did not want to breathe out.
Poet’s Notes for Shelter: “Shelter” is one of the earliest pieces I have written. It is inspired from my early memories in the Philippines. In this poem, I wanted to exhibit light thoughts and images, the comfort of being in a place where we feel safe and at ease, as well as the fragility and impermanence of these things.
Editor's Note: The lyrical quality and imagery in the first stanza are breathtakingly beautiful, transporting. The metaphor in the second stanza perfectly merges the lovers in this love poem with their enchanting surroundings.
Poet’s Notes for Waking Up: The focus of this poem is on the tender yet tangible emotions towards the person we love, as well as the significance and fullness of every moment spent together.
Editor’s Note: This poem dreamily engages all the senses of the reader: the vision of the sleeping lover, the quiet sound of the “kiss” to the forehead, the touch of the lips, the taste of salt, and the scent so intoxicating that the lover wants to hold it in her body forever. “Waking Up” and “Shelter” first appeared in the May 2014 issue of Songs of Eretz Poetry E-zine.