Francisco Balagtas poems

Francisco Balagtas[The Shakespeare of The Philippines, Prince of Tagalog Poets] (2 April 1788 - 20 February 1862 / Barrio Panginay)
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Florante's Lament

- by Francisco Balagtas 20

Vengeful Heaven, where is your wrath?
now my land is overcome, prostrate,
and in beloved Albania's infinite skies,
lately the flag of evil flies.

“Within and without my country of grief,
betrayal reigns, is enshrined, esteemed;
degraded everywhere, the heart's goodness
is consigned to the lowly pauper's grave.

“All manner of good and deed are cast
into the sea of mockery and perturbation,
each good man is treated without respect,
without burial rite entombed.

“But, oh, the cheat, the traitor, the black
of heart, are enthroned in praise,
and for each scoundrel incense is burned,
and offered up in fragrant smoke.

“Betrayal, dishonesty hold high
their heads, and the righteous is timid, bowed,
dismayed, reason itself is on its knees,
fatigued, and to weep is all that's left for it.

“And each mouth that opens
to speak the truth and right
is quickly stopped and cut
by the arrogant blade of death.

“O traitorous ambition for honor and riches!
O hunger for airy and fleeting praise!
You are the reason for all this sinfulness,
this misfortune that has befallen me.

“By the crown of King Linceaeus
and the riches of my father, the duke,
Count Adolfo was so bold to pour evil
upon Albania's sovereign land.

“All these, O merciful Heaven
you witness, why suffer them persist?
O Source of sense and righteousness,
why permit them drown in ruthlessness?

“Lift your right and righteous hand,
swing the shining blade of your rage,
upon all evil in Albania's kingdom pour
the full vengeance of your justice.

“Why, O Heaven, do you turn
a deaf ear to my suit and honest plea?
Why from this poor and luckless being
avert your face and shut your ears?

“And who could ever fathom,
O Great God, your sacred mystery?
The good will not happen on earth
if it is not Your Will.

“Alas, where now turn
for handhold, bring my heart's lament,
If Heaven refuses to listen
to my plaintive cry, my faint complaint?'

To Celia

- by Francisco Balagtas 20

If I recall and read again
those days in love's long-faded script,
would there be not a mark or trace
but Celia's, imprinted on my breast?

The Celia whom I've always
feared might forget our love,
who took me down these hapless depths,
the only reason for this turn of fate.

Again would I neglect to read
the pages of our tenderness,
or call to mind the love she poured,
the bitter struggle I gave for it?

Our sweet days gone,
my love is all that's left;
ever shall it dwell within
till I'm laid down in my grave.

Now as I lie in loneliness,
behold wherein I seek relief:
each bygone day I revisit, I find
joy in the likeness of your face.

This likeness painted with love
and longing has lodged within
my heart, sole token left with me
not even death can steal.

My soul haunts the paths
and fields you blessed with your footsteps;
and to Beata River and shallow Hilom stream
my heart never fails to wander.

Not rarely now my vagrant grief
sits under the mango tree we passed,
and looking at the dainty fruits
you wanted picked I forget my ache.

The whole of me could only
be intimate with sighs when you were ill;
for I knew as Eden kept a room us,
my hidden hurt was heaven still.

I woo your image that resides
in the Makati river we frequented;
to the happy berth of boats I trace your steps,
among the stones that touched your feet.

All these return before me now,
the joy of years, the blissful past,
where I would soak and steep myself
before I'm caught in brackish neap.

Always I could hear what you would say:
Three days and our eyes won't meet.
And the eager answer from my leaping heart:
There's only me but you prepare a feast.

So what was there in our
joyful past that memory could miss:
in constant retrun the tears do flow,
I sigh and weep: O hapless fate!

Where is Celia, joy of my heart?
Why could our blissful love not last?
Where is the time when just her look
was heaven's glimpse, my soul, my life?

Why, when we parted,
did this luckless life not cease?
Your memory is death, O Celia,
but in my heart you will not fade.

This long torment you brought,
I couldn't bear, O departed Joy;
but it took me by the hand to poetry and song,
about a life so trodden low, now lost.

Celia, my messages are mute,
my muse is dumb, her voice faint;
without my taunt she would not speak,
pray listen to me with mind and ear.

This first spring that breaks
from my parched mind I offer at your feet:
deign receive, from this kneeling heart,
even if you won't savor it.

If all this fell into slur and insult,
my gain is great from invested effort,
if complaint it is you now peruse,
remember, too, it is the author's gift.

O joyful nymphs of Bai, the placid lake,
Sirens whose voices bring music to my ears,
I come now to your sparkling shrine,
my forlorn muse implores you.

Rise now to shore and field,
accompany with lyre this humble song
that speaks: if fate this life may snip,
its fervent wish is that love won't cease.

Gleaming bloom of my mind,
Celia whose symbols are M, A, and R;
here I am adoring at the Virgin Madonna's
altar, F and B, your loyal servant.

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Poems by Francisco Balagtas, Francisco Balagtas's poems collection. Francisco Balagtas is a classical and famous poet [The Shakespeare of The Philippines, Prince of Tagalog Poets] (2 April 1788 - 20 February 1862 / Barrio Panginay). Share all poems of Francisco Balagtas.

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