XCVII

by Luis G. Dato

I love you with each rhyme, with every beat
And foot and meter, each throb of my heart.
When you come near and when you stay apart,
I find in every word a message sweet
That leads me e’er suppliant at your feet,
O goddess brown, the muse of all my art,
For you the music of my lyre shall start,
The chords of all my being to repeat.

Your face, your heart is all in all to me,
You are to me my sweetness and delight,
And my religion, all its mystery,
In life’s deep gloom my constant, shining light —
All these and more until I cease to be
And after when earth’s day has turned to night.

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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