Apoptosis*

Poetry by | April 30, 2017

(for Lola Mommy)

 

Everything passes

from this life

on to the next.

Everything moves

toward something better.

It’s natural to lose some things.

 

This is the lesson

I remember

from our little chats

on quiet afternoons

in your old house

when it was just the two of us.

 

You told me to travel.

You said go

before age would interfere;

see the world.

You said you could wait

before your great grandchildren would arrive.

 

It’s been a year

since you left us—

since I learned that I had tarried.

Sometimes I regret that

I had not hoarded our times together.

Time was not on our side.

 

But today in the warm breeze

I feel your presence.

Your words echo in my memory

in this foreign land.

Even in your absence

you continue to shape me.

 

— from Marina Bay, Singapore

(23 March 2017)

 

*pronounced /æ.pəˈtoʊ.sɪs/ (“apo-to-sis”)


Genevieve Mae Aquino was born in Manila but calls Davao her home. She has a clutch of diplomas in molecular biology and genetics. She was fellow for Poetry in English at several national creative writing workshops. She currently works as a university researcher at the University of the Philippines.