Kallautang–Francis T. Ponce


Nota Bene: Excerpted from the book, “Kallautang–Poetics of Diversity, Displacement, and Diaspora: Ilokanos in the Americas Writing” (TMI Global Press, 2009). Published through a grant from the UH SEED, and in collaboration with the Ilokano Language and Literature Program, UH Manoa. Edited, translated, and with a critical introduction by Aurelio Solver Agcaoili. 

Agsubliakto Manen


Francisco T. Ponce


Wen, agsubliakto manen

Ta diak latta maipapas

Ti iliwko iti amin a pakabuklam


Napintas ti lugar a nakaisadsadak

Dagiti pasdek, tuknuenda dagiti ulep

Narabuy ken nalangto

Dagiti uggot ti biag

Ngem adda ragsak ken talinaay

A diak mabirokan sadiay

A ditoy nasulinek a lugar

Ti pakariknaak


Nadagaang manen ti sang-aw

Ti Abril ken Mayo

Ngem ti panagdekket

Ti pingpingmo

Ken pingpingko

Barukongko ken barukongmo

Kas man addaak ita

A maparparraisan

Iti sakaanan ti pussuak

Ti Gusing Sangbay

A mangdepdep iti bara ti panawen

A diakto pulos samiren

Ta adda ditoy ti dadduma

A paset ti lubongko

Nga innakto sublisublian

A pagpasagan

Umiliw ken pailiw

Kadagiti nadungngo nga angep

Nga umapiras kadagiti parbangon

Ti Disiembre ken Enero

Ti abrasa ken kinangayed ti init

A sumarabo kadagiti bigbigat

Ti awis ti nalamiis a danum

Iti karayan Naguilian

Ulimek dagiti rabii iti narnuoyan

A bituen iti law-ang




Ad-adun dagiti binulong

Ti kalendariok

A pinigis ti panawen a kaaddak

Iti ganggannaet a disso

Ngem kadagiti panagmaymaysak

Kasla naukritan a plaka

Nga agsublisubli dagiti lagip

A napanawak


Wen, agsubliakto manen

Ta pasetka met iti amin

A pakabuklak

Ken diakto latta maipapas

Ti iliwko iti amin a pakabuklam




I Shall Return Again


Francisco T. Ponce


Yes, I shall return once again

For I cannot fully express

My missing the whole of you


The place where I found myself anchored

Is such a beauty, the imposing structures

Reach up to the skies, hitting the clouds

The sprouts of life

Are abundant and fresh

But there is joy and peace

I can’t find over here

That I can find

In this remote place


Warm is the breath

Of April and May

But in the bussing of your cheek

Against my own

Your breast against mine

I feel like I am showered

With the drizzle

At the foot of the fountain

Of Gusing Sangbay

That makes cold the wamth

Of the season

That I won’t mind

Because over here is that other part

Of my own world

That I will keep on returning to

And take a retreat

To express the feeling of missing them

To have them express their missing me

Them the caring fogs

That touch the dawns

In December and January

The handshake and glory of the sun

That welcomes the mornings

The invitation of the cool water

Of the Naguilian River

The quietude of the nights

Filled with a multitude of stars

In the skies


More are the leaves

Of my calendar years

Those have been torn in my residence

In an alien land

Than those years of my aloneness

The memories I left behind

Are like a music record with a scratch


Yes, I shall return again,

For you are part of all that I am

And that I shall always

Not succeed in fully expressing

My missing all

That which makes you whole


One thought on “Kallautang–Francis T. Ponce

  1. Sir, mabalin kad a tulungandak ti biography ni Sir Francisco T. Ponce ta masapul ko ito research ko. Agyamanak apo.

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