by Luis G. Dato

Relentlessly they’re falling, one by one,
Like dead leaves parted from the tree of life —
The father and grandfather, husband, wife,
Brother and uncle, nephew, here and yon.
The sunny day that seemed so long is done,
So cheerful, with bright expectations rife,
And every time, the heart as with a knife
Is pierced with loneliness to find them gone,

And fear, for like them, shall we come to grief
One day, so obviously a common fate
With each and all implacably we share,
And Time will turn us to a yellow leaf,
The tragic heritage which we must bear,
With death the rendezvous without a date.

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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