UFCH awards Agcaoili

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Agcaoili, pinadayawan ti UFCH;
inawatna ti 2007 Progress Award for Education

Pinili ti United Filipino Council of Hawai’i ni Dr. Aurelio Solver Agcaoili a kas naisangsangayan nga edukador iti sibubukel nga Estado ti Hawai`i babaen ti panangited daytoy nga organisasion kenkuana iti pammadayaw a Progress Award for Education para iti 2007.

Naiyawat daytoy nga award kenni Agcaoili iti maysa a pormal a seremonia iti Royal Hawaiian Hotel iti Waikiki, Hawai`i, iti Estados Unidos ti Amerika idi Nobiembre 24. Kadua ni Agcaoili a mapadayawan dagiti 19 pay a binigbig ti UFCH, maysa nga aliansa dagiti agarup 100 nga organisasion dagiti Filipino iti nadumaduma a parte ti Hawai`i.

Binigbig ti UFCH ni Agcaoili gapu iti aramidna iti edukasion saan laeng iti uneg ti Unibersidad ti Hawai’i nga agdama a pagpapaayanna a kas manursuro iti Ilokano, iti pelikula ti Filipinas ken kultura a popular, iti literatura, iti panagiyulog ken interpretasion, ken iti drama.

Kaduana dagiti nagduduma civic organizations ken cause-oriented groups, kasta met ti GUMIL Hawai`i, Annak ti Kailokuan iti Amerika, ken ti Timpuyog Dagiti Mannurat nga Ilokano, inrusuat ni Agcaoili ti kaunnaan unay a 2007 International Conference on Ilokano and Amianan Languages and Cultures. Isu met laeng ti nangirubuat iti Fiesta Ilokano ken Amianan a naangay iti Philippine Consulate General ken manamnamanto manen a maangay iti kada Pebrero a bulan a pannakarambak ti Philippine Arts Month.

Kinonseptualisa ni Agcaoili ti agtultuloy a pannakaedukar ti komunidad kadagiti isyu iti kanser ken iti kinaranggas iti taeng babaen ti 4K Initiative (Kur-itan Kontra iti Kanser ken iti Kinaranggas iti Taeng) ken ti 3K Initiative (Kur-itan Kontra iti Kinaranggas iti Taeng), agpada a community language program nga adda iti babaen ti Ilokano Language and Literature Program iti Unibersidad ti Hawai`i. Kadua ni Agcaoili a nangisayangkat kadagitoy nga inisiatiba ti Asian American Network for Cancer Awareness, Research and Training, ken ti Domestic Violence Clearinghouse and Legal Hotline-Pilipina Rural Project.

Ni Agcaoili met laeng ti maysa kadagiti nangirugi iti Nakem Conferences a maysa itan a tignayan ken addaanen iti country chapter iti Filipinas, ti Nakem Conference Philippines nga ipangpanguluan ni Dr. Alegria Tan Visaya, sekretaria ti Board of Regents ti Mariano Marcos State University.

Nileppas ni Agcaoili, babaen iti Presidential Scholarship, ti kinadoktorado iti Unibersidad ti Pilipinas a nangisuruanna sakbay a nagpa-Amerika. Niringpasna pay ti masterado iti business administration, masterado iti arte medior iti pilosopia, batsilier iti arte klasikal, ken batsilier iti pilosopia. Maysa pay a lisensiado a manursuro iti California a nangisuruanna sakbay nga immakar iti Unibersidad ti Hawai`i.

Mannurat ni Agcaoili iti Bannawag; kasta met nga agsursurat iti Ingles ken Tagalog. Ti nobelana a Dangadang ti maysa kadagiti napadayawan iti Centennial Literary Prize idi 1998. Inyalatna iti daytoy a tawen ken iti napalabas ti umuna a premio iti Gawad Komisyon para kadagiti koleksion ti daniwna nga Ilokano.

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Progress Awards 2007

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UFCH gives out Progress Awards,
25 receives recognition by the community

By the Fil-Am Observer News Bureau
with a report from A. Solver Agcaoili

For the 17th year since it first began to recognize the exemplary achievements of Filipinos in the Hawai’i, the United Filipino Council of Hawai’i gave out the 2007 Progress Awards to 25 individuals who have proven extraordinary gifts and talents that symbolically advance the cause of creating a public recognition of the abilities, skills, and knowledge of Filipinos in Hawai’i.

This recognition, starting in 1990, is the brainchild of Antonio V. Ramil.

Ramil led this year’s honorees with an award of distinction as “Father of the Progress Awards.”

The Juan Dionisio Sr. Lifetime Achievement Service Award and the UFCH Lifetime Achievement Award were given to Oscar Portugal and Mario R. Ramil, respectively.

Brian Andaya, a practicing lawyer and current president of UFCH, extolled the achievement of the awardees and explained the need to keep on doing that which is exemplary so that the perception of the public about Filipinos will change.

The awards, Andaya, said, is a symbol of what a community can do to bring honor to its people by bestowing public recognition upon its members who, by their acts and examples, have proven that we have what it takes to become exemplary members of the society.

Andaya recalled that the Filipino community has so much to do to correct misimpressions about our people.

The awards, Andaya said, is a concrete proof that we can do at par with anyone else because we have the competency and the capacity to excel.

Twenty-five individuals all over the islands received public recognition as recipients of the 2007 Progress Awards; they represented 15 categories of the awards.

One of those who received the Progress Awards for Education is Dr. Aurelio S. Agcaoili, currently coordinator of the Ilokano Language and Literature Program of the University of Hawai’i at Manoa and columnist and op-page co-writer of Fil-Am Observer.

Other honorees include William S. Julian for agriculture; ‘Iwalani Tseu for arts and entertainment; Leticia Serapion Castillo and Barbara J. Haliniak for community service; Barbara Ann Bongo-Arthurs and Ligaya M. Ricafrente for education; Alma T. Caberto, Erlinda Villena, and Dona Pastula for entrepreneurship; Jorge Marzan and Donovan dela Cruz for government service; Charlene Cuaresma for humanitarian service; John Garcia and Aldrin M. Villahermosa for labor and construction; Randal Grant B. Valenciano and Ronald Ibarra for law and jurisprudence; Mila Medallon for media and communication; Danilo L. Licudine for science and technology; Kurt B. Nino for sports; Louise Abilla and Gregory P. Peros for travel and hospitality; and Deisha Lei M. Pico and Michael A. Dahilig, outstanding youth.

The “Ating Kaibigan Award” was given to David Heenan, a trustee of the Estate of James Campbell.

Heenan was honored for his work with the Filipino Community Center in Waipahu and for his being instrumental in securing a place for the center.

The awards, emceed by Keahi Tucker, anchor of KGMB9, and directed by Leo Rojas Gozar, had for its theme “Above and Beyond.”

During the awards, Judge Simeon Acoba officiated in the re-affirmation of commitment ceremonies involving the officers of UFCH for 2007-2008.

Three young singers, Arshiel Calatrava, Deion Anunciacion, and Mayumi Fernandez, added life to the ceremonies with their individual rendition of some popular songs.

Iwalani and Aureana Tseu, with the Kumu Hula dancers, danced their way to the hearts of the more than 238 guests and participants.

Dumawatka kaniak iti verso

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(Ken Ka Lydia Abajo Quides, kadua iti tignayan ti kontra iti kinaranggas iti taeng ken mangiruprupir iti kalintegan dagiti babbai a maidaddadanes ditoy Hawai’i)

Dumawatka kaniak iti verso
ket itedko kenka ti paulo ti daniw.
Idulinko iti panunot dagiti kakas-angan
a padas ket iduayyak ti isem.
Kastoy ti aramidtayo amin,
datayo a pimmanaw
datayo a binaras ti bangungot
a sagut ti ili kadagiti amin nga agdawat
iti ugaw wenno makidilot iti ayat
wenno mangipadigo iti panagragut
ti lasag iti sabali pay a lasag
kas kasingin dagiti amin a liday.
Wenno salaknib kadagiti agmironmiron
a kinadaksanggasat.

Adda ranggas kadagiti balikas, kabsat,
ken ti arrabis dagiti agmalem a pananggudas
dagiti kalsada iti pigsa wenno saririt
wenno kakaisuna laeng a kinatakneng
anian ta iti riaw a mangwaknit
iti agmarmaraisem a langit a kunam a nalimpio,
nalinak kas iti lubong dagiti nakamassayag
nga arapaap, adda ditoy nga agindeg
ti maduadua a panungpalan ti agdadata a kapay-an
dagiti busel nga itayyetayyek ti angin:
agbalin dagitoy a lulua ita ken idi kalman.

Narigat met ngamin ti panagungar iti ballasiw
dagiti adayo a makabiag a sao para kadagiti exilo:
datayo dagiti pagsangladan dagiti sayangguseng
nga agariwawa, kas iti Sao idi ugma,
iti henesis dagiti agsampaga a sabong
santo met laeng aglaylay kadagiti uluanan
dagiti pimmusay a ragragsak
wenno maris iti mata uray no agsisiim
ti adalem a rabii nga agpagungga
iti patpatiray-ok ti nagabay nga agsapa.

Datayo nga immadayo ket agpalpalama
a kankanayon iti kaasi ta kasta ngarud ti banag
dagiti gasat nga impabus-oytayo
kadagiti dingnguen iti ili, dagitay
man agsambuambo a bulbulitor
kas iti presidente ti kusit
kas iti diputado dagiti dagensen iti barukong
gapu kadagiti di agsusurot a kassaba
para kadagiti malmalday
para kadagiti mamirmiraut nga altar
para kadagiti nagawan a no mabirokan
ket awananen iti rupa, lasag, tulang
wenno kabaelan a mangidayyeng iti “Pamulinawen”
wenno aminen a nga ayug ti puli.

Saan a kas karina ti panangisagut
iti paulo ti daniw a nakalemmeng iti barukong.

Manglaglagip ti pluma
kas iti atang a naikari iti panagmalmalanga
tapno maiyayab ti panaglak-amtay amin,
amin, mairaman dagiti bulding, pilay, sul-ot
ken bulbulitor iti daniw iti namarmarna nga agmatuon.

A Solver Agcaoili
UH Manoa/Nob 25, 2007

2007 UFCH Progress Awards

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Agcaoili, pinadayawan ti UFCH;
awatenna ti Progress Award for Education

Pinili ti United Filipino Council of Hawai’i ni Dr. Aurelio Solver Agcaoili a kas naisangsangayan nga edukador iti sibubukel nga Estado ti Hawai`i babaen ti panangited daytoy nga organisasion kenkuana iti pammadayaw a Progress Award for Education para iti 2007.

Maiyawatto daytoy nga award kenni Agcaoili iti maysa a pormal a seremonia iti Royal Hawaiian Hotel iti Waikiki, Hawai`i, iti Estados Unidos ti Amerika inton Nobiembre 24. Kadua ni Agcaoili a mapadayawan dagiti dadduma pay a binigbig ti UFCH, maysa nga aliansa dagiti adu nga organisasion dagiti Filipino iti nadumaduma a parte ti Hawai`i.

Binigbig ti UFCH ni Agcaoili gapu iti aramidna iti edukasion saan laeng iti uneg ti Unibersidad ti Hawai’i nga agdama a pagpapaayanna a kas manursuro iti Ilokano, iti pelikula ti Filipinas ken kultura a popular, iti literatura, iti panagiyulog ken interpretasion, ken iti drama. Kaduana dagiti nagduduma civic organizations ken cause-oriented groups, kasta met ti GUMIL Hawai`i, Annak ti Kailokuan iti Amerika, ken ti Timpuyog Dagiti Mannurat nga Ilokano, inrusuat ni Agcaoili ti 2007 International Conference on Ilokano and Amianan Languages and Cultures. Isu met laeng ti nangirubuat iti Fiesta Ilokano ken Amianan a naangay iti Philippine Consulate General ken manamnamanto manen a maangay iti kada Pebrero a bulan a pannakarambak ti Philippine Arts Month.

Kinonseptualisa ni Agcaoili ti agtultuloy a pannakaedukar ti komunidad kadagiti isyu iti kanser ken iti kinaranggas iti taeng babaen ti 4K Initiative (Kur-itan Kontra iti Kanser ken iti Kinaranggas iti Taeng) ken ti 3K Initiative (Kur-itan Kontra iti Kinaranggas iti Taeng), agpada a community language program nga adda iti babaen ti Ilokano Language and Literature Program iti Unibersidad ti Hawai`i. Kadua ni Agcaoili a nangisayangkat kadagitoy nga inisiatiba ti Asian American Network for Cancer Awareness, Research and Training, ken ti Domestic Violence Clearinghouse and Legal Hotline-Pilipina Rural Project.

Ni Agcaoili met laeng ti maysa kadagiti nangirugi iti Nakem Conferences a maysa itan a tignayan ken addaanen iti country chapter iti Filipinas, ti Nakem Conference Philippines nga ipangpanguluan ni Dr. Alegria Tan Visaya, sekretaria ti Board of Regents ti Mariano Marcos State University.

Nileppas ni Agcaoili, babaen iti Presidential Scholarship, ti kinadoktorado iti Unibersidad ti Pilipinas a nangisuruanna sakbay a nagpa-Amerika. Niringpasna pay ti masterado iti business administration, masterado iti arte medior iti pilosopia, batsilier iti arte klasikal, ken batsilier iti pilosopia. Maysa pay a lisensiado a manursuro iti California a nangisuruanna sakbay nga immakar iti Unibersidad ti Hawai`i.

Mannurat ni Agcaoili iti Bannawag; kasta met nga agsursurat iti Ingles ken Tagalog. Ti nobelana a Dangadang ti maysa kadagiti napadayawan iti Centennial Literary Prize idi 1998. Inyalatna iti daytoy a tawen ken iti napalabas ti umuna a premio iti Gawad Komisyon para kadagiti koleksion ti daniwna nga Ilokano.

MANGER-BORN, MAN-GOD, MIGRANT—

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MANGER-BORN, MAN-GOD, MIGRANT—
OR THE MEANING AND SUBSTANCE OF CHRIST’S MASS

By Aurelio Agcaoili, Ph.D.
UH Manoa

(To be published as editorial, Fil-Am Observer, December 2007)

It is the season of the year that sings of good tidings, the songs drifting in the cool maintain and sea air and then getting into our lungs to give some freshness to our otherwise everyday lives.

It is the season of the year that remembers and forgets at the same time, its contradictions embedded in the way we have received the Mass of Christ as part of the rite of our lives coming in combos, like those monstrous burgers we call comfort food even if that is what we need the least.

The remembrance—our own act of remembering—comes in the fidelity to the chronology of the calendar that hangs on our unspeaking walls as if issuing out daily memos that remind us of the elastic possibilities of love and loving.

The remembrance—our own act of partaking in the social drama—comes in the arbitrariness of the gifts wrapped in the self-advertising colors of the season, with the abundance of reds and greens and that December flower in profusion to boot.

The remembrance—our own way of going through the same motions—is not remembrance because it is not one that makes us a “member again” but makes us act in earnest but the earnestness is palpably missing.

For to remember is to always “re-member”—to always become a member again: a member of a community of people who care, who are concerned, who are conscientious of what is happening not only to themselves but to other peoples, to other communities, to other selves.

What accounts for Christmas today is not what Christmas is supposed to be, this we must remind everyone today.

With commerce-men and profit ruling our drab lives, we make our lives drabber, our substance lost, our sense of meaning and worth equally lost.

The message of the event at the manger is the coming of the man-child who became Man-God who became the announcer of the good news of redemption.

That message has been lost in the cacophony that wakes us up in the morning and which is the same cacophony that makes us restless in the evening because the silence that fills our heart is not there in the heart but away from that which makes sense, away from that which is meaningful.

Even as we celebrate, we need to recall the million lives and limbs lost because of unjust wars everywhere, or because of rampant social injustices in our contemporary communities anywhere.

Even as we partake of the Christmas meal, we need to invoke abundance, recalling that there are many who have forgotten what a good meal looks like, much less how it is partaken of, with a family gathered in prayer and gratitude.

Even as we wrap our gifts, we recall those who have nothing because many of us have gotten everything, forgetting that the very act of possessing is the same act of dispossessing others.

Christmas—Christ’s Mass—is all this: back to square one. Back to where meaning counts, to our being migrants in this life and that we are all on our journey back to that homeland that awaits us with that message of plenitude of gift of soul and grace.

Happy holidays to all of you!

What the 2007 Ilokano Drama and Videofest Means

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By Aurelio S. Agcaoili, Ph.D.
Ilokano Program, UH Manoa

I am counting the semesters, and this Fall 2007 is my third in running a heritage program that it is so unique in ‘the whole wide world,’ to use a worn-out phrase that does not mean so much except as some kind of an exercise in self-affirmation when even in exile, the Ilokanos remain invisible, underrepresented, their existence remaining obscure. This heritage program is second to none because no other program of its kind ever exists to keep it company.

The University of Hawai`i’s Ilokano Language and Literature Program–formerly known as Ilokano and Philippine Drama and Film Program–is the only program in the world that offers the Bachelor of Arts program, with an academic concentration in Ilokano.

Not even at the University of the Philippine where all things innovative are expected, things that have something to do with the liberation of the land from the claws of the cultural enemy, whoever and whatever this enemy is.

The only boast the great UP could pretend to show before the taxpaying Philippine public, many of them Ilokanos, is that they offer, as a token of academic appreciation, and in order not to be accused of being partisan for Tagalog, a handful of courses, two in the Ilokano language, and a smattering of Ilokano literature, couched in a generic and unkind term, “Regional Literature,” in the graduate program. The term ‘regional literature’, of course, gets a flak from the younger academics and scholars not any longer schooled exclusively in the ‘Tagalogized’ mindset of what constitutes ‘the national language’ and its twin, ‘the national literature.’ The younger scholars now know better—and they do understand that the crop of the crap kind of ‘Tagalogism’ permeating the whole of the educational system of the Philippines does not make sense any more, with the new-found spirit among the ‘globalized villages’ that values the local. It is this same spirit that holds that the local makes sense because it is the everyday and, thus, in putting a premium to the local, the ‘national’ and the ‘international’ must be put into question and subjected to interrogation.

Which is what many people are doing to demolish the flawed because hackneyed argument for Tagalogism as a principle for the definition of the Philippine nation, of Philippine nationalism, and all such cognates that are being used against the rest of the languages and cultures of the more than 170 ethnolinguistic groups of the homeland.

Even here, among the exilic communities in Hawai`i, such pervasive attitude remains, an attitude that is unruly and incapable of reason and rationality because, the argument goes, there is already the national language, and it is all over The Filipino Channel or TFC (that boob-tube supplier of boob-tube argumentum ad populum in the likes of that ever-so popular and invasive ‘Wowowee’). I am certain the same holds for all the exilic communities in the mainland United States and in other communities abroad reached by the long and extended arm of the gigantic competing TV stations in the Philippines and their subsidiaries elsewhere.

Now the 2007 Ilokano Drama and Videofest held November 17 this year, at the Art Auditorium of the University.

I now write it from hindsight, a day after the celebration. I write as well from a series of reflections that have something to do with the continuing cultural and linguistic injustices committed against the peoples of the Philippines by the very government of that has vowed to follow the rule of law. Other perpetrators of this linguistic and cultural injustice are the very people who are swearing allegiance to a homeland for all the people of the Philippines, a homeland that takes as its founding principle justice and democracy.

In the three semesters that I have been running the program, I have seen many of the things that make you happy. I have seen as well the many things that make you dolorous and timorous. Dolorous because you do not have many advocates, not many willing co-warriors to fight for social justice that takes into account the demands of cultural identity and cultural democracy. Timorous because, well, yes, you have to admit it, the future is yet to come and that the future is beset with many challenges. Of course, when you run a heritage program in a country that announces its respect for diversity but you must fight it out to gain that respect even among the members of your very own heritage community, you ought not to believe that challenges are necessarily problems.

And many of those who do not understand what we are doing at the Ilokano Language and Literature Program are Ilokanos who either are (a) busy becoming other people, (b) busy with their civic-mindedness minus advocacy for Ilokano, (c) busy jockeying for position of power within the already fractious cultural organizations of Filipinos, or (d) too ashamed to own up their Ilokanoness.

For the 2007 Ilokano Drama and Videofest, we at the faculty decided to dedicate the festival to the cause of cancer awareness and domestic violence.

On the matter of cancer awareness, those in the know say that of the many ethnolinguistic groups in the State of Hawai`i, the peoples of the Philippines register the highest in terms of the number of those who do not receive adequate services related to cancer because only a few go through a regular physical examination meant to deter the onset of early cancer.

On the matter of domestic violence, we peoples of the Philippines ranked first—with our record unparalleled—in domestic violence cases, with our latest, Erlinda Adviento, a proof of the kind of work and education that we have to do. Her husband stabbed Adviento to death.

With these as our premises, we prepared for the 2007 Dramafest and we opened it to the public. At the festival, many people came to watch our students try—and many succeeded—to act and speak like an Ilokano in the way an informed Ilokano would.

It is also at this program that we honored our partners in the holding of the 2006 Nakem Centennial Conferences: Reynie Butay, Annie Corpus, Tina Daquip, Estrella Pada Taong, and San Nicolas Lechon.

We also honored Edmund Calaycay Jr., the first-ever fully certified interpreter in Ilokano—the first-ever in the history of Ilokano interpreter certification in the State of Hawai`i, the United States, and the whole world. The Philippines do not have such kind of a program and we wonder what is happening to the courts where expertise in the Ilokano language and in the art and science of interpretation would be needed.

Two sets of judges for the drama competition came in to help. For the beginning level, we had Jennifer Alforo, Edmund Calaycay Jr., and Dr. Ella Pada Taong. For the intermediate level, we had Meann Binonwangan, Agnes Malate, and Amado Yoro.

It was hard work, with the kind of a preparation involved, the nitty-gritty details that we had to look into, the oversight that must be done even on that morning of ‘The Big Day.’

Here we are—and our Ilokano students, a number of them not even linked in any way to the Ilokanos—looking forward to the 2008 Spring Dramafest.

Our prayer is to see a full-blown Ilokano and Amianan Program in many of the Universities of the Amianan Philippines in the future. With our Nakem partnership, this dream might soon come to fruition. Mariano Marcos State University is soon putting up its Ilokano and Amianan Studies Center. We hope some other universities will follow.

We must mention here that Don Mariano Marcos State University beat everyone in the offering of a creative writing program in Ilokano. I was there at their inauguration. I should know.

Silent March at Dusk for Erlinda Adviento

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I came to the Silent March with an empty heart.

The news of another Filipino American dead from stabbing boggles me. The mind can grow tired and numb. Or even dumb with news like this one. It escapes me that in this time and age when life in this land is a bit better–many times better than the one we have got in the homeland–domestic violence can have that power to snuff out a life.

On the road to the Silent March, I had all these in mind, remembering and remembering for always my mother, my wife, my two daughters and all the mothers and the wives and daughters everywhere.

I wrote that poem in English (I wrote others in two Philippines languages) to wrestle with my thought in that late night that I received an e-mail announcing that another Filipino nurse was dead. I sent it to Charlene, and pretty soon, the poem got into the hands of other people who are in the know about the atrocities of domestic violence. The poem was written to honor a life lived shortly but lived with kindness and care for others—as is the life of a nurse is all about.

I arrived at the Capitol early enough to realize that I did not have to put in more quarters in those metered slots on Punchbowl, on the east side of the venue for the Silent March. One lady who was going home, bag in tow, told me, with a sing-song voice, that the ‘meter people’ are already gone for the day and that I did not have to put in money in those slots since they–these meter people–were no longer coming back to check and to issue traffic tickets, in case the slots flash, “Expired! Expired! Expired!”

It is the force of serendipity–this “Expire! Expire! Expire!” business of the metered slots. I came to the Capitol precisely for that reason: to honor one mother, one wife, one parent, one nurse, one immigrant in Hawai’i who succumbed to stab wounds from the very person who should have loved her forever, took care of her, cooed her to sleep, fed her, and provided for her.

“Expire! Expire! Expire!” says the metered slot and here I was, at dusk in these parts, going to that Silent March that was to honor Erlinda Adviento who ‘expired,’ the Erlinda who as a nurse, gave so much of her life to save others but ironically she could not save her own. Her death is her oblation now–her offering to all of us, believing that in this tragic end of her mortal life, we all could learn. We are assuming, of course, that we are listening to the many silences of her death.

As soon as I got to the Capitol, I saw several people, some DV advocates and educators, I was to learn later on, and a camera crew from a TV station, and reporter, Lisa.

Anna of the Hawai`i State Coalition Against Domestic Violence met me in the front step of the Capitol facing Beretania and from there exchanged pleasantries until she brought me to the TV people who were to interview before asking me to recite my poem.

Lisa asked about many things that had something to do with the poem that I wrote and what moved me to write that poem in particular.

I told her the truth, including the story behind that poem.

Anna asked us to come together and told us about the importance of the Silent March, what was it for, and some housekeeping rules on how the SM was to be done. We were to go around the Capitol one block afterwhich we were to return where we came from and finish the march.

Which we did, placards on hand, hoisting them as far as the weighed down arms could go. It was late in the afternoon and many of those who came to the Silent March came straight from their offices and work, the reason why only a few could hoist the placard above their heads for every passerby to see. My placard spoke of the prayer and hopes I kept deep in my heart: “Good men do not hurt.”

I thought of all the good men I knew in my life—in the many phases of this life lent to me on a stewardship. The good men I knew did not hurt—they only demonstrated more goodness and lived in goodness.

Now my heart has begun to speak of words that hurt. But words heal at the same time, and this Silent March, in the fullness of language beyond rhetoric and word, was a testimony to that adage.

A Solver Agcaoili
State Capitol, Honolulu, HI
Nov 20, 2007