(di ko alam kung ano ang nasa iyong nagtitikom
nagbubukas; may kung anung sa loob lang natatantong
ang tinig ng iyong mga mata’y mas malalim sa bulaklak)
at sinuman, kahit ulan, walang ganyang munting kamay.
e.e. cummings, may kung saang hindi ko nalakbay [somewhere i have never travelled]
on a rainy Saturday night in Manila.
The book has an epigraph from Webster’s Dictionary: definitions of the verb “to serve.” It’s an interesting range of meanings, from the idea of obedient servitude to the authoritative (from law, the military, a prison sentence), to the meeting of another’s needs, to being of use. The title poem begins with an erotic moment registered in a world of torture and violence. It turns, midway, from the sensual and “poetic” to an official grammar, parsing violent policies as you might diagram a sentence in a classroom.