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Kapre 'tso

Kapre ‘tso

KUMAKAYAW ang kapre, nakangisi-- parang nangangampanyang Erap, Chiz, Gibo, Noynoy o Manny B. Villar, Jr. na mas kahila-hilakbot yata—sa guwardiyang nakatalaga sa may bahaging Snake Road ng Picnic Grove, Tagaytay City tuwing tikatik ang ulan o lirit ang ambon, dakong hatinggabi’t may buwan sa langit…

Hindi maungkat ng guwardiya kung balak ding kumandidato sa 2010 ng kakila-kilabot na nilalang… naunahan na siya ng sindak… hindi naungkat kung meron mang plataporma sa pamamalakad ng gobyerno ang kapre… balot ng itim na balahibo ang katawan, parang Fidel V. Ramos na hitit-buga sa mahabang abano, nakatalungko sa tabi ng punongkahoy. Kung pananakot lang kasi, mas talamak ang inihahasik na hilakbot ng Kagawaran ng Kalusugan ukol sa mananalanta raw na A(H1N1), severe acute respiratory syndrome, avian influenza, at mga nauna pang salot… at mas matindi pa rin ang kleptospirosis na talagang sumasalanta sa sambayanan, pwe-he-he-he!

Nagpalipat ng babantayang bahagi ng Picnic Grove ang guwardiyang sinakmal, walang pakundangang nginalot at siniklot ng hilakbot. Hindi yata makayanan ng kanyang isip na may mga ganoon ngang nilalang… nanggagaya sa diskarte ng mga pulpol at pulitiko na hayok mailuklok sa poder!

Naroon pa rin sa kanyang tambayang puno ang kapre ng Picnic Grove… baka nga maging clitourist attraction at usyusohin ng mga hindi pa nakakakita ng ganoong nilalang. Ungkatin lang kay Mang Fermin, isa sa mga nangangalaga ng lugar, kung saan namamalagi ang kapre. Magdala ng sampraskong lambanog o samboteng Gran Matador para mas masaya ang usapan.

Sa puno ng lalaking alokon o himbabao nakatanghod ang kapre sa aming bakuran… kailangang putulin noon ang puno, masasaklaw ng pader ng itinitindig na bahay… ginulantang ang mga gumagawa ng bahay nang magpakita sa kanila ang pobreng kapre… kinabukasan, inapoy ng lagnat ang ilan sa mga gumagawa… andap namang magpatuloy sa trabaho ang iba’t tila napika ang kapre sa bantang pagpapatalsik sa kanya— mas masahol nga naman kaysa impeachment complaint kontra Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo ang panganib na haharapin niya.

Naatasan ang inyong imbing lingkod upang makipag-ayos sa kapre.

So how do you deal with a pure earth being, who can live for over 400 years, who’s actually clueless on using its earth essence to hurl at anyone a tonnage of blows from a distance, a lethally vicious technique called hsing-i… a being vastly lonely for the company of its kind?

Teka, mula ang kapre sa katagang “kaffir”—Arabic term for infidel, South African insult for blacks. Talagang panlibak, pang-aglahi ang pinag-ugatang salita na itinatawag sa kapre…

Pangitlugan ng swallowtail butterflies ang dahon ng kaffir lime—na pampabango’t pampasarap na sangkap katuwang ng tausi, luya’t leeks sa pinasingawang isda. Ginawang tagapangalaga sa naturang lumalaking puno sa aming bakuran ang… well, what do you offer a being so lonely for the company of its kind?

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