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DUDUKAL ng hukay sa buhanginan na hindi aabutin ng paglaki ng tubig—hindi kalaliman, sapat nang may bumukal na katiting na tabsing… saka sasapinan ng mga dahon ng saging o pandan. Doon ilalagak, mabababad ang monamon, dilis, alamang, kahit mumunting tunsoy sa tabsing, tatakpan ng mga dahon… tatabunan upang maburo sa katamtamang alat at likas na mikrobyo sa buhangin… such crude fermentation in brine turns up halobaybay, or watered down fish sauce.

Teka, laksa at talaksang salamat sa aking biyenang Dominador Gomez— kampeon ng angkan sa sumping-balian ng daliri (ako ang tinanghal na kampeon ngayon) na tumukoy sa naturang sinaunang pamamaraan.

Sa mga sisidlang banga o burnay na ibinuburo ang isda—tinitimbang na ang mga paghahaluing sangkap na karaniwang patas, sangkilong asin sa sangkilong isda. Buwan din ang lilipas bago hanguin ang nakapaibabaw na patis… malinamnam na sangkap sa maraming lutuin ang unang hango… malalabi ang malapot na bagoong na may taglay pa ring halimuyak ng baba eh, as suggested by a Nikolai Gogol opus—“Taras Vulva.”

Babantuan ang latak ng binurong isda—still the old-fangled watered down fish sauce sediment, halobaybay. Kapag pinalabnaw pa, hiko na ang labas… still smells fishy but not as delicious as the extract skimmed off the top or the dark earthen color of the sauce in the fermentation vat’s belly and prostate portions.

Mauugat ang halobaybay mula sa isinagawang pamamaraan at lunan, halo sa baybay…

Hindi lang naman samyo ng nakangiting bulaklak ng dilag ang masisinghot mula sa baybay, riparian parts or the shoreline where tides do incessant, not-too-insistent cunnilingus on wee clits of grit and gravel.

It’s a stroll, a leisurely jaunt on foot through the coastline—the Tagalog equivalent word is

It’s also word spelling—“pagbaybay.”

We can leave the shoreline; do something called “pagbalbal,” or take liberties with how words are spelled… spell-mell, ah, that’s kenning, that stems from ken doing coinage. It takes someone with an arsenal, umm, a harem of sorts of over 60,000 words to do that.

Ah, spelling… make that spellcasting, that isn’t exactly for the uninitiated. There’s something electrical and magnetic thrumming in ‘em words… German physician and physicist Hermann Helmholtz—he broke ground in his findings on the sensation of tone and perception of sound-- wondered why out of the enormous number of vowels possible, only five are used.

He found that the vowel “a” (in English, ahh) resounds in the heart region; the ”o” around the navel; “u”(oou) at the level of the sacrum (Japanese hara); “e” resounds at the neck and “i”(eee) behind the front at the place of the third eye (in Sanskrit, the ajna chakra).

Practical application: Forceful expulsion of the syllable “huun-haah” (learned that in qigong, a soft but deadly martial art) strengthens the heart and the life force storage region of the tummy…

As for the consonants, French philosopher and historian Michael Foucault reports that nearly all philosophers of the Middle Ages grounded their philosophy on a numerology of 1 through 9 linked up with consonants… to create incantations, and in rituals of alchemy and magic called spirits to their aid.

“You need to become a pen in the Sun’s hand,” so counsels Sufi poet Hafiz
… pero mahirap magpaliwanag sa mga gunggong at jejemon na nakaburo’t nakaburol ang utak sa halobaybay, pwe-he-he-he!


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