Karlo Silverio Sevilla

One Year After the Break Up at the No AC Motel

The incandescent bulb hung on its crooked cord and choked the room 
with its static emission of dim yellow light when you 
finally uttered, “This is a losing battle.”
Timidly I conceded, “This is a lost battle.”

You said I’m losing you and I replied that I already lost you
as the walls succumbed to the same pall of pale
that clothes public hospital rooms and morgues.

I would’ve stormed out of that cheap motel room
at the end of the first hour and thirty minutes
but I didn’t want to waste the second half.

Besides, that longest short time ever was on me so I chose to stay 
until we checked out of that detention center together with bowed heads:
a lady and a gentleman furtively spilling apart onto the sidewalk 
that concaves across Pasay Rotonda that late rainy June afternoon.

Tonight, I’m back all alone in the same microwave room
and slouch on the same crumpled bed.
I find my half bottle of beer from last year still at attention
atop the icky mahogany nightstand.
Likewise untouched is this one hundred-peso ash tray: 
a bird’s nest of glass that keeps its unhatched eggs 
of half-buried dried cigarette butts.

The cockroach that zigzagged across the ceiling like an automaton
remains on guard and descends on the lip of my beer bottle 
whose content has long been abandoned by its spirit.
The minute six-legged soldier unmutes and reports 
in an inquiring tone, “Both of you didn’t get naked last time.”

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