Leisure of a Lit Lover

Journeys and thoughts of a reader.

The Angry Christ (Ang Galit na Kristo)

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The Angry Christ

A loose translation by J.A. Del Prado

 

 

–Victorias, Negros Occidental

Not soft orange, but flaming red:

In this town known for the color of pyre, blazing

Is the searing stare, disquieting

As if no songs of hallelujah can be heard,

No meek angels peeking

From the clouds for there is no heaven here.

Though His arms are spread, it means

Not a welcome, but a kind of annihilation.

As if in a short moment, His arms will move,

His hands will wave and suddenly,

We, in awe, will be stormed by black

Smoke that will flay for sure the flesh of retrospect.

With rosaries hanging from our waists,

We stare at Him and pray, He who conquers

The altar of our consciousness, our vision,

Perfidious and confused about the images.

There is no escape from Judgment

In the chapel of the somber afternoon.

There are no people in the Shrine—the doors

Are open for us, pilgrims,

Who are prepared to be sheltered by the Spirit

Of this fertile land of thousand sweetness and canes.

It seems everything is still. There is no wind,

And we hear the silence of the trees,

And not the familiar rustling

of falling leaves nor the fruits

That suddenly scatter on the grass.

Each column of the Church presents the Passion of Christ.

Drawn are the characters as cane farmers—

The Father is wearing a shirt, and the Mother, in sleeve dress,

Is in perfect despair upon knowing her Son’s destiny.

Alive and etched on a block of wood is the fall—

The weight on His shoulders, the redeeming wounds

That He needed to feel and suffer for Salvation.

In the end, it is done. Our consciousness circle

The whole church, as if escaping the One Who Sees.

We beheld the image of Niño and the Carpenter

Who look as if they live there and the Beloved Father and Son

Are suddenly accursed with an embodied oath.

On one side, a Woman, whose skin burnt

By the sun, gently looks at everyone, no

Distress from her isolation from the Sacred Family.

But it is true: You can never escape the One Who Sees.

We can never hide ourselves. Even if we go

To the confessionary, He is there, shining upon our face

And shedding curtains and cover mats.

There is no shelter, even the hidden baptistery

Lit by sunrays, a lustrous fragment

Of mosaics reminiscing the joy of the Father and the Descent

Of the Spirit in the form of a dove, on the day of Baptism in Jordan.

Where to hide? Behind the trees outside, beneath the shade

Of these guards of the shrine that will surely fall

In the realization of the annihilation shown in the image?

Nowhere to run to. The deceitful has hidden already,

For they are the first to know the advent

Of this riddled afternoon, like the first Couple in the Garden—

They who were stunned by their nakedness and hid behind bushes.

He is omnipresent in all parts of the tabernacle, and even

The doors ,that will voluntarily push our attempt

To hide ourselves into unknown crooks, will dislodge

The hinge of our conscience, will force us to wash with the light of

The mural’s fire our exposed secrets or anger or sins.

Come, my friends, hurry! Let us kneel!

In this solemn place, in the silence of saints,

Poses the fear of this gigantic image!

It shall harm us according to His title;

It shall consume us until we become ashes!

Look at the hole of His hands: we must not

Doubt that He died, that He rose

Again, that He will return in the end of time!

Even now, He seems to return with such glow,

And we need not feel His sides

With our fingers. Our eyes are enough, enough

To read the portrait and perceive  the lips

Of His wounds. As if it has depth that cannot be fathomed,

As if it contains the eradicating tongue of pyre

That will shortly breathe holy fire,

Not the one that descended upon the temples of the Disciples

And had them speak the languages of all nations,

But the one that shall ignite the flames of the lake of suffering

That is only right to be bestowed upon us.

All of a sudden, we will hear the Roar

From the nearest Sugar Mill. We will understand

That the dread cannot harm. The afternoon is bright

And around us, tricycles drivers rev up their engines

And a few moments more,  the sugar farmers are on their way home

And might even go to church first to give thanks

For the good grace of this passing day, for the promise

Of progress in this town that was in peace

When we arrived. The Christ awaits

In his painting, as if He is watching

Them—and all of us—in our recourse to prayer

And desires. The Roar! The Roar, as if

A signal from the trumpets of Judgment , shall drive away

Any anxiety from the turmoil that raided

Our hearts. The Roar declared the desired

Good News: Peace and Death are With Us.

 

 

In the original language (Filipino):

 

 

Ang Galit na Kristo

Louie Jon A. Sanchez

 

 —Victorias, Negros Occidental

 

Hindi banayad na kahel, kundi nagliliyab na pula:

Sa bayang ito na kinikilala sa kulay ng silab, nag-aalab

Ang nakadadarang na titig, iyong nakatitigatig

Dahil wari’y walang himig ng aleluyang maririnig,

Walang maaamong anghel na nakasilip

Sa mga ulap dahil wala naman ditong langit.

Ang Kaniyang pagdipa’y hindi nangangahulugan

Ng pagtanggap kundi tila isang anyo ng paglipol.

Na wari bang sa isang iglap, kikilos ang mga bisig,

Kukumpas ang mga kamay at biglang-bigla’y

Lulusob sa ating mga namamangha ang itim

Na hangin, lalapnusin tiyak ang balat ng salamisim.

Nakahimpil ang ating binabalingan habang sukbit

Natin ang rosaryo at panalangin, Siyang nananakop

Sa altar ng ating mga malay, sa ating mga paningin

Na lilo at lito sa kung alin sa mga imahen ang unang

Tutugon.  Mistulang walang takas sa Paghuhukom

Na naroroon sa kapilya ng malamlam na hapon—

Walang katao-tao ang Dambana, bukas

Ang mga pinto sa mga peregrinong tulad natin

Na handang magpalukob sa dinadalaw na Espiritu

Ng matabang lupain ng laksang tamis at tubo.

Tila napahimpil din ang lahat.  Walang kahangin-

Hangin, at ang mga puno sa paligid ay nariringgan

Ng katahimikan at hindi ng karaniwang kaluskos

Ng naglalaglagang dahon o kaya’y mga bungang-kahoy

Na biglang-bigla’y sasambulat na lamang sa damuhan.

Itinatanghal ng bawat haligi ng Simbahan ang Pasyon

At nakalarawan ang mga tauhan bilang magtutubo—

Nakakamisa ang Ama’t nakabalintawak ang Ina

Na sakdal-dusa sa kabatiran sa palad ng Anak.

Buhay sa ukit sa tipak ng kahoy ang pagkasubsob,

Ang bigat sa balikat, ang mga sugat ng pagliligtas

Na kailangang danasin at indahin sa Pagsasakatuparan.

Sa huli, naganap na.  Kumilos paikot ang ating malay

Sa buong simbahan, wari’y tinatakasan ang Nakatingin.

Minasdan natin ang imahen ng Niño at ng Karpintero

Na mukhang taga-roon lamang at biglang ginabaan

Ng sumpang katawanin ang Sintang Mag-ama,

At sa kabilang dako nila, ang Aleng sunog ng araw

Ang balat, maamong nakatingin sa lahat, walang

Pagkabahala sa pagkakabukod mula sa Sagrada Familia.

Ngunit tunay nga: hindi matakas-takasan ang Nakatingin.

Hindi natin maikukubli ang ating sarili.  Magtungo man tayo

Sa kumpesyunaryo’y naroroon Siyang inaaninag ang mukha

Nating nalaladlaran ng kortina’t ikinukubli ng sawali;

Walang silid na masisilungan, kahit ang tagong binyagan

Na pinagliliwanag ng sinag ng araw ang makinang na bibinga

Ng mosaik na ginugunita ang pagkalugod ng Ama at Pagbaba

Ng Espiritu sa anyo ng kalapati, sa araw ng Binyag sa Jordan.

Saan mangungubli?  Sa likod ng mga puno sa labas, sa lilim

Ng mga bantay na ito ng dambana na tiyak na mabubuwal

Sa kaganapan ng panlilipol na marahang lumilitaw sa larawan?

Walang matatakbuhan.  Wari’y nagtago na ang mga lalang

Na nauna nang makabatid ng di-maipagpapabukas na pagdatal

Ng bugtong na hapong ito, tulad ng unang Mag-asawa sa Hardin

Na nagimbal sa kabatiran ng kahubdan at kumubli sa palumpon.

Omnipresensiya Siya sa lahat ng dako ng Sambahan, at kahit

Ang mga pintuan ay kusang itutulak ang ating tangkang

Magpinid ng mga sarili sa mga lingid na sulok, tutungkabin

Ang bisagra ng budhi, paghuhugasin sa liwanag ng apoy

Ng miyural ang mga malalantad na lihim o galit o sala.

Halina, mga katoto, magmadali! Magsiluhod tayo!

Sa kawalang-kibo ng paligid, sa pagkakatikom ng mga santo,

Nagbabadya ang sindak ng dambuhalang larawang ito!

Pipinsalain tayo sang-ayon sa Kaniyang pamagat,

Tutupukin tayo hanggang sa ganap na malustay sa abo!

Malasin natin ang butas ng Kaniyang kamay: hindi tayo

Maaaring magdudang Siya nga ang namatay, Siya nga

Ang nabuhay, Siya nga ang babalik sa wakas ng panahon!

Ngayon nga’y tila nagbabalik Siya sa ganoong pagbabaga,

At hindi na natin kailangang ipasok pa sa ano mang tagiliran

Ang ating daliri.  Sapat na ang ating mga mata, sapat na

Ang pagbasa sa larawan at ang pagmalas sa mapanlamong

Labi ng mga sugat.  Animo’y may lalim na hindi matatarok,

Tila ba nilalaman nito ang mapamuksang dila ng silab

Na ilang sandali pa’y magbubuga ng banal na apoy,

Hindi iyong bumaba sa ulunan ng mga Alagad

At nagpabigkas sa kanila ng mga wika ng mga lupalop,

Kundi iyong magpaparikit sa dagat-dagatang dusa

Na karapat-dapat namang igawad sa ating lahat.

Walang ano-ano’y maririnig natin ang Ugong

Mula sa malapit na Azukarera.  Mababatid nating

Ang sindak ay hindi makapipinsala.  Maliwanag ang hapon

At sa paligid, humaharurot ang mga traysikel

At ilang sandali pa’y magsisiuwian na ang mag-aasukal,

Maaari’y dadaan sa simbahan upang magpasalamat

Sa mabuting biyaya ng dumaang araw, sa pangako

Ng pagpapatuloy sa bayang ito na himbing pala

Nang tayo’y dumako at dumating.  Nakaabang

Ang Kristo sa kaniyang pinta, wari bang minamasdan

Sila—at tayong lahat—sa ating pagdulog ng panalangin

At hangad.  Ang Ugong!  Ang Ugong na wari’y

Senyal ng trumpeta ng Paghuhukom ay nagpalayas

Sa ano mang bagabag sa kaguluhang lumusob sa ating

Kaibuturan.  Nagpahayag ang Ugong ng ating nasang

Mabuting Balita: Sumasaatin ang Pamamayapa.

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This entry was posted on April 25, 2013 by and tagged , , , , , , .
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