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Titinik na, kikiling pa

TO hold up a bank… bangenge sa todo tungga nang ibungad ang limpak-limpak na balak sa kausap… ‘kako’y punuan na ang pampang na nanganganib laging gumuho, matuklap, matibag… punuan ng kawayan to curb erosion.. to hold up that bank of the Zapote River .



Sa pagsiyasat sa bambang ng ilog na hatsing lang ang layo sa bahay ng kainuman, nagambala ng paghakbang ang sandosena yatang palaka,,, sinlaki halos ng tuta na bilis-kidlat ang igtad tungo sa ilog.



Magtatakip-silim na noon, pandalas na sa panginginain ng mga nagsulputang gamumu’t mumunting kulisap ang mga palakang nakatambang sa sukal at damuhan. That diet of insects provide frog legs a Spanish fly side effect on the gourmet who eats wild bullfrog legs… but as for me I take to eating what’s between the legs of a dilag…



Agad na inutusan ng kabungguang bote ang isang alalay na mamingwit mg palaka… talagang bigay-hilig sa tulad kong palaka… plog! plog! plog! ang sunod-sunod na tunog ng mga nabulabog, tuloy-lundag sa ilog. Ni walang sumagpang sa pain. Walang nabingwit.



Walang mabibingwit sa ganoong paraan, ‘kako’y magtanim na lang ng kawayan.



At laging may kalakip na masidhing kahilingan sa bawat itutulos na buko’t biyas. Kailangang nakasuksok sa lupa ang bahaging uukitan niyong hiling upang matupad. Sa ilang bahagi ng Mindanao , karaniwang kalakip na hiling sa itutulos na punla ay maubos, tahasang mapuksa ang angkan ng kaaway o kaalitan. Habang lumalago ang itinanim, unti-unting nagiging totoo ang ibinaong hiling.



Kaya ang haplos ng hangin sa kawayan, tinatawag na lawiswis—wish, wish, wish.



Maraming bagay at lagay ng buhay ang maisisimpan sa pagtatanim… pero mas maraming walang hilig sa ganoong gawain. Meron din na talagang mainit ang kamay kaya kahit sama ng loob ang itanim, laging patay.



Naipayo na kawayang kiling (na ang tunog sa dahon: wash, wash, wash) at kawayang tinig (tunog naman ng wasiwas-pantarak, swish, swish, swish) ang pagsamahing itanim. Kawayang umaatikabo kapag lumago. Titinik na, kikiling pa: matutugunan at matutupad ang matinding pagnanasa.



Payong bangenge—in vino veritas, sabi nga—pero nitong nakaraang ilang taon, nasagap ko na lang sa mga balita na nagtanim din pal ang kawayan sa kahabaang pampang ng Ilog Zapote. Na meron ngang prinsa o sinaunang dam para mag-imbak ng patubig sa mga dating palayan doon. Meron pa ngang ilang panig ng ilog na kairugan ng look kaya alat na ang tubig—na pinadadaloy sa mga irasan para humango ng asin.



Ni hindi binagsakan ng sisi ang antigong prinsa. Hindi rin masisi pati pagpapapasok ng tubig-alat mula Manila Bay . Nagbuhos din ng baha si Ondoy sa Ilog Zapote—pero walang nasagap na balitang ang mga nasa pampang ay nasalanta.



Mainam talaga ‘yung titinik na, kikiling pa. Ganoon ang kalagayan sa alamat nina Malakas at Maganda… bago nagkabiyakan ng biyas ng kawayan, mwa-ha-ha-haw!

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