Joe Dado's Poems



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The Forsaken Vegetable Garden

by Joe Dado
April 2011

At the back of my house, between lowland and highland,
In the midland town where I live, there I see,
Walled round by bushes like an inland island,
The ghost of a garden faces me.
Here there were string beans of old, and tomatoes
Upo and pechay and crops that I sow--
Okra, camote, sayote, potatoes--
Long ago.

But now I am old and can no longer water
The plants that I planted; nor pull out the weeds
That come up and choke up my crops; nor go after
The chickens that dig up and eat all the seeds
I have sown in the vegetable plots that I dug up,
The plants in my garden, all each in its bed,
Because of the labors age forced me to give up,
All lie dead.


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FROM A SOLDIER, DYING

by Joe Dado
May 2011

(With apologies to Christina Georgina Rossetti)

When I am dead, my comrades,
Play no sad tunes for me.
Speak thou no praises at my wake;
My failings, let them be.
Stand guard awhile beside me,
As we have stood before,
Facing our nation's enemies
In remembered days of yore.

I shall no more be present
When our comrades meet again.
I shall not hear your stories and
Your fav'rite song's refrain.
When the roll is called in remembrance,
My name will be called, and yet,
Haply you may remember,
And haply you may forget.


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LOVE AND HATE

by Joe Dado
May 2011

(With apologies to Robert Frost)

Some say the world will end in Love,
Some say in Hate.
From what we have when there is Peace,
I hold with those who favor Love.
But what we have when there is War
Shows Hate is, for destruction, great.
So let us "Wish
Upon a Star"
That the world will end in Peace
And Love, not Hate and War.


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THE SITUATION OF THE COUNTRY

by Joe Dado
May 2011

(After "The Garden of Proserpine"
by Algernon Charles Swinburne)

Here, where the economy's falling,
Here, where all trouble seems
Increasing, with the State failing,
And all dreams, broken dreams,
I watch the leaders stealing
From reaping folks and sowing,
Graft and corruption growing'
A hopeless place it seems.

I am tired of crooks and grafters,
And men who cheat and lie,
Of what may come hereafter
To us who suffer and die;
I am tired of crimes and crises,
Low income and high prices,
Public officials with vices,
Which, with loot, they satisfy.

Soon the masses shall awaken.
And with clenched fists shout "Fight!"
The nation shall be shaken
By frightful sound and sight.
Reforms will be effected,
Anomalies corrected,
Officials freely elected,
And all wrongs made "All Right!"


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I REMEMBER, I REMEMBER

by Joe Dado
June 2011

(With apologies to Thomas Hood)

I remember, I remember,
The place where our skills were born,
The dormitory where the Tac
"Came peeping in at morn;
He never came a wink too soon,
Nor brought too long a day."
Tho' then, I often wished that he
Might sometimes stay away.

I remember, I remember.
Our uniforms gray and white,
With swords and bayonets, on parade,
A'gleaming in the light.
All these are just a memory,
But now they give me joy,
To know that they have made a man
Of one who was once a boy.

P.S. The above is dedicated to our
Tacs who made men out of us.


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TODAY'S RUBAIYAT

by Joe Dado
June 2011

(With apologies to Omar Khayyam
and Edward Fitzgerald)

I
Wake! For the SOBs* in control
Of government doth fool us, one and all.
Drive out the Crooks as the Sun does, the Night.
"United we stand; divided we fall!"

II
Come, let's unite and fight for what is right;
Come out of darkness and into the light.
"The Bird of Time has but a little way
To flutter"---and the Bird is on its Flight.

III
Ah Friends! If we could, all of us, conspire
"To grasp this sorry Scheme of Things Entire,"
Could we not "shatter it to bits---and then"
Remold the Nation to our Heart's desire..."

* Pronounce in full.


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ON TURNING EIGHTY

by Joe Dado
July 2011

God gave a span of life to men
Of up to three score years and ten.
Than these, I have received ten more;
My years on earth have reached four score.

Lord, God of Hosts, I give to Thee
My thanks for what you've given me:
Courage, my Duty to fulfill,
With Honor and Integrity,
Ever abiding to Thy Will,
And, to my Country, Loyalty.


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THE WPSP SONG

by Joe Dado
July 2011

(With apologies to the USMC)

From the Cordillera mountains
To the shores of Davao Bay,
We all went to train and study
In the USM and A.

True to Duty and to Country,
We maintain our Honor clean.
We are proud to claim the title of
West Pointers from the Philippines.


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BG DANNY LIM

by Joe Dado
September 2011

BG Danny Lim;
May God be with him,
As he does his Duty
With Honor, for Country.

May his mission be accomplished
Before his tenure is finished,
To help Biazon and Aquino
Clean the Customs Bureau.


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SHAMCEY SUPSUP

by Joe Dado
September 2011

Shamcey Supsup,
Sweet as syrup.
Brains and beauty,
Pride of our country.

With face and figure
In perfect architecture.
Modest, humble and Godly,
May you always be.


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MANNY PACQUIAO

by Joe Dado
September 2011

(With apologies to Tin Pan Alley)

Manny Pacquiao alias PacMan,
Fighting gentleman from GenSan.
Singer, swinger, dancer, boxer,
TV host, product endorser.
Congressman from Sarangani.
Says he wants to be the V.P.
But they say that he's "too young,
Too young to really be a Veep.
They say that Veep's a word, like love.
A word that he can't know the meaning of."
But then, for him. no hill's too steep
To climb... Someday "they may recall
That he was not too young at all."


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Jessica Sanchez

by Joe Dado
May 2012

Ang batang si Jessica
Mahilig sa musika.
Magaling umawit
Kahit siya ay bulilit.

Siya ay binoboto
Ng mga Pilipino
Para maging Idolo
Ng Mga 'Merikano.

English Version

Little Jessica
Is fond of "musica."
She sings very well,
As the judges can tell.

Fil-'Mericans are voting
In the "Audience's Vote" poll
To make her the next
American Idol.


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JESSICA SANCHEZ, ENCORE

by Joe Dado
JUN 2012

Jessica Sanchez has a wonderful voice.
For American Idol, she's the second top choice.
Her Mom's Filipina; her Dad Mex-American.
She was born and grew up as truly American.
The place that's America is where dreams can come true.
If you dream like Jessica, "It could happen to you."


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MANNY PACQUIAO'S LAST FIGHT

by Joe Dado
JUN 2012

Manny Pacquiao, Congressman,
Officer and gentleman,
Preacher, boxer, who believes
Better t'give than to receive,
Fought a match with Timothy Bradley,
But the contest turned out badly.
Pacquiao lost by split decision,
Making Bradley the new champion.


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