Carayan Journal

Verses About the So-called Pocket Rebellion
in Northern Mindanao, 4- 6 October 1990

by Ferdinand T. Cantular

In the early morning of Thursday, 4 October 1990, a renegade
colonel long wanted by law enforcement agencies came out from
hiding in Agusan hills, entered Cagayan de Oro City with a
convoy of some 300 armed followers and occupied the military
camp while the regular army garrison retired to the periphery.
His men had in the meantime seized the army camps in Butuan and
Iligan. For two days the situation was tense. But shortly after 2 A.M.
on Saturday, 6 October, Col. Alexander Noble surrendered.
Miguel Bernad, S.J.
Kinaadman Vol. XIV

October the Fourth

Like a cyclone
of fire
Mindanao is
set ablaze.

The bushes
of Butuan are
shaken anew

as the cry
of the black
eagle erupts

echoing its
embattled shriek
sending psychological
shock in the air

and Cagayan
the next landing
bough of its talons
is set into a quagmire
of police.

like gossipy
leaves exaggerate-
who is who?
what is what?
why is why?
how is how?

Those seasoned
are no longer
they do not
forget the
real flow
of the river.

But people
remain like
confused leaves
disrupted by
the strange wind
that sweeps
here and there.

October the Fifth


but the

for the sun
is beclouded
by dark ascending

That is when
the insurgents
from Camp Pintoy
parade to
the pueblo.

The roads
above the rivers
are converted
into a threshold
of no man’s road.
The Iliganons
have to cross
below down
the murky river
leading to Tambacan
towards the bay.

The vigil
for peace
is as strong
as prayer;
the hazy
moon greets
the night’s
shaky dream.

October the Sixth

The cocks
crow victoriously
this dawn.

After two
continuous days
of lament

the sun
rises anew
triumphant rays
to days of gloom.

those shaken
boughs have rested

the rivers
of Mindanao
return to their flow.

The black
eagle has accepted
the superiority
of space
over flight.

poetry, Carayan Vol 1. No.1 Dec 2015

© 2016 English Department, Xavier University - Ateneo de Cagayan
ISSN 2467-5679
All poems, stories and other contributions copyright to their respective authors