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Once a Home

It’s a good place for hanging out with friends, filled with exploding dim colored lights and loud music. But have you ever wondered why a simple house stopped becoming a place to call home, and instead became a place stuffed with noise and lots of stingy alcoholic beverages?

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Artwork by Ferdinand Marticio

Since time immemorial, Thomasians had widely known a particular old and cramped place along the well-lit street of Asturias — there stands an almost hundred year old house. It’s a good place for hanging out with friends, filled with exploding dim colored lights and loud music. But have you ever wondered why a simple house stopped becoming a place to call home, and instead became a place stuffed with noise and lots of stingy alcoholic beverages?

Perhaps being one of the most overlooked stories, the story behind the place we call, “Tapsi,” is darker as we had expected. The house was built in the early 1900s where the clash of Spanish and American Colonization happened. It was owned by a mestizo who had his wife killed inside the very place they call home during the Second World War. Since then, the house has been isolated and never been visited by anyone, but only the owner stayed home. He lived there until the last of his breath, and it was said that before he sold it to a rich family during the 1980s, he warned them of “Echoes and bloodshed,” but the new owners didn’t listen. Every night the new family that started to reside in there were haunted by blood curdling cries and sudden gunshots that can be heard randomly at night. When they look around the house, they find nothing. There’s no person crying, neither is there someone with a gun.

Ultimately terrified by the now haunted house, the new owners kindled an idea. To turn it into a restaurant-bar kind of place. And so they began their business of starting up a resto-bar inside the house. As time passes by, more customers came in and it became one of the busiest places around UST during nighttime. Since then, the cries and gunshots weren’t heard again…or maybe we just don’t hear it, because the banging of the loud music from the speakers and the voices of the constant chit-chatting students conceals the horrifying history of Tapsi.

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Literary

Malayo pa ang umaga

Kaming simula pagkamulat ay kabiyak na ng lupain,
bakit agarang nilipol palayo sa baybayin?
Ang paggising ng kanyang tumutunaw na ningas,
patuloy ang mahapding pagdaloy hanggang panaginip.

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Dibuho ni Tricia Jardin

Tao at kalikasan,

pinagbigkis na kaluluwa’t tinubuan,

mitsa’t ningas ng yumayabong na kalinangan,

dugo’t pulso ng mga nananahan.

Noo’y lulan nitong buklod

ay lawang mapagbigay,

hanging sinala muna’t hinimay

ng kapaligirang luntian pa—

agapay ang isa’t isa 

sa paghinga’t pag-usbong ng mga punla.

 

Kay tulin ng galamay na puminta sa kalangitan—

ang kanbas ay ginapangan ng masidhing kalamlaman.

Bago pa halikan ng araw ang guhit-tagpuan,

nauna nang sumiping ang abo sa mga nasisinagan.

 

Kaming simula pagkamulat ay kabiyak na ng lupain,

bakit agarang nilipol palayo sa baybayin?

Ang paggising ng kanyang tumutunaw na ningas,

patuloy ang mahapding pagdaloy hanggang panaginip.

Hindi matahimik

ang aming mga dalangin

Paanong ibubulong sa nakakasulasok na hangin,

kung sa singhap ko’y panganib ang nakahain?

Nasaan na ang kanlungan? Ano ang kapanatagan?

Kailan makakauwi sa aming mga tahanan?

 

Sa pag-alala ng mga araw bago ang ligalig ng pagkulo,

ang mga itinanim ay tiyak na babalik sa hapag,

ang mga bukas ay hindi purong balisa ang pasan,

ang taguan ng mga bata’y sa isa’t isa,

at hindi sa kabog ng dibdib na tatayain sila;

hihimbing ang kanayunan sa saliw ng mga kuliglig—

heleng aamo sa pagal ng maghapon.

 

Ngayong ang bungangang matagal nang huminahon

ay sumusuka ng babalang nakaguhit sa langit,

ang mga nakabaon sa lupa’y nilisang pilit,

ang almusal sa umaga’y sumamo’t pananalig,

ang bagong kalaro ng mga supling

ay kalahating mukha lamang ang sumisilip;

sandaling idlip lamang ang pinahihintulutan—

‘di maaaring pikit-mata sa susunod na paglisan.

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Literary

UST’s English Department hosts first treasure language storytelling in PH

The event also featured discussions on endangered languages in the country and the flaws of the Mother Tongue-Based Multilingual Education in schools.

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Photo by Deojon Elarco/TomasinoWeb

UST’s Department of English and the UST English Language Studies Society (UST- ELSSOC) organized “Wikang Yaman: Kuwento at Kwenta” which featured storytelling through indigenous languages Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020.

It is the first treasure language storytelling event in the Philippines and in Asia which is now on its second year as part of UNESCO’s International Year of Indigenous Languages.

UST-ELSSOC gathered storytellers to share stories like the legend of Maria Cristina Falls, Sirena, and the epic of Ibalon which were told in different languages in the country such as Bikolano, Chavacano and Ilocano.

Thomasian professor Jonathan Geronimo discussed about endangered indigenous languages in the country and the flaws of the Mother Tongue-Based Multilingual Education in schools.

“Ang wika ang ekspresyon, identidad at puso ng bansa. Ito ay karapatang-pantao. […] Mahalaga ang papel na ginagampanan nito upang patuloy tayong maging malaya at sumusugo sa lipunan na wala dapat naiiwan,” Geronimo said.

According to him, aside from the conflict on which language should serve as mother tongue among the hundreds of dialects in the country, the current curriculum in schools focuses more on English language rather than the native language due to the indirect colonialism which is still very much present in the country.

In addition to this, he suggested that the government should not just adopt and implement rules from foreign countries that does not even fit in the Philippines’ situation for what works within foreign countries does not mean that it will also work for the Philippines. H. Camba and C. Bautista.

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Literary

Namamasko po!

Hihingi po ng aginaldo
Gantimpalang para lamang sa may pribilehiyo
Hustisya! Hustisya ang hangad ko!
Ngunit pangingitil, pangingitil ang ganti ninyo!

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Kuha ni Louise Lampa/TomasinoWeb

Sa maybahay ang aming bati

Sa tahanang sigla ang nasa lipi

Dinggin ang tinig ng mga nagapi

Sumasaliw sa tono ng nayurakang puri

 

‘Merry Christmas’ na maluwalhati

Sa haligi ng tahanang mariin pang nakabaon

Sa ilaw na hindi pa pundi ang tugon

At hindi nakatirik ang mga kandila sa poon

 

Ang pag-ibig ‘pag siyang naghari

Sa bawat sulok na naaararo ng mata

Walang mantsa ng dugo sa mga saplot nila

Tanging pag- ibig lamang ang maihahambing sa pula

 

Araw-araw ay magiging Paskong lagi

Hindi maghapong siphayo

Walang magdamagang panlulumo

Salat ng gapang ng oras ang mga nasa litrato

 

Ang sanhi po ng pagparito

Ay himpilan ng sumamong hindi tumitila

Ambon ng malasakit maaring may bisa

Sa kalamnang pinagdamutan ng mga maharlika

 

Hihingi po ng aginaldo

Gantimpalang para lamang sa may pribilehiyo

Hustisya! Hustisya ang hangad ko!

Ngunit pangingitil, pangingitil ang ganti ninyo!

 

Kung sakaling kami’y perhuwisyo

Ito’y pag-usbong lamang ng kinalimutan

Ang pag-ibabaw ng nasa laylayan

S’yang palahaw ng mga nangangailangan

 

Hindi kanlungan ang pagdiriwang

Walang takas sa bagabag ng iniwang kabilang

Ito ang tinig ng mga nilumpo

Pasensya na kayo’t kami’y namamasko.

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