Before rich people-politicians dumped hectares of subdivision-soil in the town of Las Piñas in Northern-Manila-then-Rizal, the ocean had cut through the former-railway-slum communities, and tilapia farms had been all over and behind the house. Now and then kansusuwit would get entangled in the fish nets and we’d have more choices for game, and come summertime-low-tide, the neighborhood kids would leap one after the other from the Spanish bridge into the fresh murk that the ocean had left behind. Old folks said that whenever the infamous bamboo organ played, a new bakawan would rise by the shoulders of the inlet and, when they’d grown dense enough, fishermen would find a week’s worth of catch snagged under the tree, particularly during full moons. Then my friend Sexy disappeared, they said murdered by local policemen for being a snitch. The Tasaday turned out to be a hoax. More Camella Homes villages had ribbon-cutting ceremonies. An uncle who had been fired from Phillips went into rehab for years. Lolo contracted hepatitis. The sun shone brighter, hotter, on the surrounding tambak, and the rest of the water retreated back to the coast. Thankfully, the next-door-kid Almar got into a good university. But Mother died and I had no reason to visit anymore, let alone stay. I have two or three cousins left, and two uncles, I think. Memory is a fog and I believe most things come in pairs: a voice diving into a well and its echo, breath and death. During typhoon season, recent residents would hear something moving under the floor, trying to break through from the foundations. They all wake up having had vivid dreams of fish and drowning. In the now-city’s church, the organ keys moan their years and it gets really hot during mass. I’ve no roots there anymore, but I can’t be sure as it’s been so long.
- 109: NO THEME 12with C Maling & N Rhook 108: DEDICATIONwith L Patterson & L Garcia-Dolnik 107: LIMINALwith B Li 106: OPENwith C Lowe & J Langdon 105: NO THEME 11with E Grills & E Stewart 104: KINwith E Shiosaki 103: AMBLEwith E Gomez and S Gory 102: GAMEwith R Green and J Maxwell 101: NO THEME 10with J Kinsella and J Leanne 100: BROWNFACE with W S Dunn 99: SINGAPOREwith J Ip and A Pang 97 & 98: PROPAGANDAwith M Breeze and S Groth 96: NO THEME IXwith M Gill and J Thayil 95: EARTHwith M Takolander 94: BAYTwith Z Hashem Beck 93: PEACHwith L Van, G Mouratidis, L Toong 92: NO THEME VIIIwith C Gaskin 91: MONSTERwith N Curnow 90: AFRICAN DIASPORAwith S Umar 89: DOMESTICwith N Harkin 88: TRANSQUEERwith S Barnes and Q Eades 87: DIFFICULTwith O Schwartz & H Isemonger 86: NO THEME VIIwith L Gorton 85: PHILIPPINESwith Mookie L and S Lua 84: SUBURBIAwith L Brown and N O'Reilly 83: MATHEMATICSwith F Hile 82: LANDwith J Stuart and J Gibian 81: NEW CARIBBEANwith V Lucien 80: NO THEME VIwith J Beveridge 57.1: EKPHRASTICwith C Atherton and P Hetherington 57: CONFESSIONwith K Glastonbury 56: EXPLODE with D Disney 55.1: DALIT / INDIGENOUSwith M Chakraborty and K MacCarter 55: FUTURE MACHINES with Bella Li 54: NO THEME V with F Wright and O Sakr 53.0: THE END with P Brown 52.0: TOIL with C Jenkins 51.1: UMAMI with L Davies and Lifted Brow 51.0: TRANSTASMAN with B Cassidy 50.0: NO THEME IV with J Tranter 49.1: A BRITISH / IRISH with M Hall and S Seita 49.0: OBSOLETE with T Ryan 48.1: CANADA with K MacCarter and S Rhodes 48.0: CONSTRAINT with C Wakeling 47.0: COLLABORATION with L Armand and H Lambert 46.1: MELBOURNE with M Farrell 46.0: NO THEME III with F Plunkett 45.0: SILENCE with J Owen 44.0: GONDWANALAND with D Motion 43.1: PUMPKIN with K MacCarter 43.0: MASQUE with A Vickery 42.0: NO THEME II with G Ryan 41.1: RATBAGGERY with D Hose 41.0: TRANSPACIFIC with J Rowe and M Nardone 40.1: INDONESIA with K MacCarter 40.0: INTERLOCUTOR with L Hart 39.1: GIBBERBIRD with S Gory 39.0: JACKPOT! with S Wagan Watson 38.0: SYDNEY with A Lorange 37.1: NEBRASKA with S Whalen 37.0: NO THEME! with A Wearne 36.0: ELECTRONICA with J Jones