Monday, December 05, 2005

why I love philippine lit

The past few days, I've taken it upon myself to get reacquainted with Philippine lit. Here's what I've been reading.
Carlos Cortes' Lassitude: I have not read anything like this before. Stories that seem more like tales that seem more like pointless stories that seem so different from the usual Western short stories we've been reading for most of our (colonial) lives. Love this!
Lakambini Sitoy's new book, Jungle Planet: a few good stories, a number of not so good ones. An uneven collection. Bought her mostly for sentimental reasons. When I read Mens Rea when I was in college, it pushed me to write a story. This new book makes me want to.... read something else. hehe
Issy Reyes' In Transitives: On the whole, I think better than the first collection. I'll update this entry with the list of poems in that book that I like.
Arguilla's "How my Brother Leon Brought Home his wife": Tell me if it should be "a" wife, or "his" wife. Either way, a great great story. SO well-written. Although for many of us, fields of rice and a rural landscape are hardly what we call home, this story makes one believe that one actually does have a home of that sort, even if only in the imagination. (And one can actually still go home to it.) Sorry, quick nostalgia moment there. hehe
I've also been reading NVM's essays in "Work on the Mountain", Mojares' great Bibliographical list of Cebuano publications (this guy's scholarship puts everyone to shame), and Marjorie Evasco's dissertation.
I'm obviously in the midst of (and close to panic level) finding a research topic for my thesis. IN the process, I'm finding out why I love to read in the first place: because books (and art) bring the world BACK to us, (even if we supposedly live in it everyday).

I hope everyone's doing fine. :)