INVOCATION (Translated from Jose Rizal)

by Luis G. Dato

Hold high your pensive brow,
This day, O youth, and stand,
Shine radiant now
Your valor grand Hope of the Motherland.

Awake, O genius, rise
To youth your song outpour
Which, bird-like, flies
But swiftier more
The haunts of dream to soar.

Come, youth, while in your wake
The Graces sing behind,
The fetters break
And now unbind,
The dungeons of the mind.

Behold, in tropic lands
Where sombre shadows frown, Iberia hands
Your fragrant crown,
And bids you court renown.

You, who aspiring sail
The skies on fancy’s wings,
And strive to scale
The heights where rings,
The lyre on silver strings;

You who the nightingale
In song surpass would fain,
Down dusky vale,
With sweet refrain,
Beguiling human pain;

You who to senseless stone
The life-flame would impart
The dreams unknown
Of some greet heart,
Give harmony in Art;

And you who every charm
Of Phoebe’s beloved face,
With gifted arm
On cloth could trace
The dread Olympian grace;

Awake, for soon the flame Of
genius will be crowned,
To sing your name
The clarions sound,
Your fame o’er earth proclaim.

O glad awaited hour
For this Oriental isles,
Blessed be the power
Who youth beguiles
With songs and wreathed smiles!

Luis Dato
Luis Dato

Luis G. Dato (July 4, 1906 - January 29, 1985) was a poet, writer and educator from Sta. Cruz, Baao, Camarines Sur. He published books in English including Manila A Collection of verse (1926), My Book of Verses (1936) and the Land of Mai in 1975. He also wrote several books and text in Bikol such as, Vocabulario Bikol-Ingles-Kastila (1963), Cantahon na Bikol (1969), Morfologia kan Tataramon na Bikol (serialized in Naga Times), Patotodon sa Bikol (Bikol Mail) and Sarabihon sa Bikol.

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