VIA MUNDI

by Luis G. Dato

Ride, ride the highways of the world away,
And back again, with hearts that throb with life,
Your grails seek out in the light of farthest day,
In that consists the world’s incessant strife.

Blue hills the distant, clear horizons dot,
Trees, houses also by the road we pass,
And bamboo clumps, like giant wind-harps blot
From sight the scenes beyond the shriveled grass.

Deep rules the highway turn in rain to mire,
The sharp recoil to jolt you out of sleep,
But that’s not much, the perils lie more dire,
Within the heart; its spites and sorrows deep.

For life is wandering on great gaps of light
And darkness in a world where faith and fate
Meet and collide, where ogres dark affright —
Those of the heart more fearsome — greed, lust, hate.

The heart! the heart! for man in his worst foe,
Rough through the world, more violent yet man’s soul,
It could save him, but works his overthrow,
To it, and less to Satan, due his fall.

And so each day incessant up and down
The highways of the world ride, Jasons, ride,
The Golden Fleece, the grails to spur on you on,
Until the day God calls you to His side.

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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