Kris Lacaba made a poem titled “Day” and after a quick read, I felt nostalgic. As I read the poem, I noticed how some things did not feel right. The first question was answered in the second paragraph and the second question is answered in the first paragraph. Also, the first 2 paragraphs and the last 2 paragraphs feel off from one another. It took me a lot of reads to understand what the poem is and as I did my fifth reading, I understood what the poem was.
Before my fifth reading, I consulted with a friend of mine as to what the poem means and she gave a lot of far ideas such as communism and rallies. I respected her opinion but thought that not everything is political. Kris Lucaba made this poem and is a graduate of the University of the Philippines. This signifies that the poem is local because I know the exact location of where this stall is. When Kris said “Cars and Brand new Tricycles” it gave me the idea that this place is somewhere in UP Town Center which is close to Ateneo, which would explain the cars, and a village, which would explain the tricycles.
This confirms that the speaker of the poem is indeed Mr. Lucaba but I am still debating on whether or not he was speaking as a college student or a professional. This poem shows a weekday in UP and it portrays life during break time for students and employees. Evidence of this is “Their ID’s around her necks”. IDs could also refer to a company ID because some employees take a break but still wear their company ID.
The meaning of this poem shows the life of a vendor in UP. In my fifth reading, I answered my question. The poem is structured with 17 syllables in a paragraph. The 17 syllables are divided into a 5-7-5 format which means it is a haiku. Haikus traditionally talk about seasons. By the way, he said, “IDs around their necks” we could confirm that this is during a school day. Haikus also have a quality called “Kireji” which means that there is a juxtapose somewhere in the poem. We can find that juxtaposition in the first two paragraphs and the last two paragraphs. The first two paragraphs questions bees and smoke while the last two details a weekday in that fishball stand.
If you read the poem, it might seem like a quick read but the meaning is subjective. The meaning varies depending on which lens you look at it from. If you take it at face value, then it just looks like a typical day in UP. However, if you apply a different lens such as a postcolonial one, then the meaning suddenly reveals itself. The author hopes this article helped you see some things you did not see before. Language is beautiful and it only takes a few glances to see the beauty of a poem.