Poems of Rizal

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To Virgin Mary

Mary, sweet peace, solace dear
Of pained mortal ! You're the fount
Whence emanates the stream of succor,
That without cease our soil fructifies.

From thy throne, from heaven high,
Kindly hear my sorrowful cry!
And may thy shining veil protect
My voice that rises with rapid flight.

Thou art my Mother, Mary, pure;
Thou'll be the fortress of my life;
Thou'll be my guide on this angry sea.
If ferociously vice pursues me,
If in my pains death harasses me,
Help me, and drive away my woes!

To the Philippines

Rizal wrote the original sonnet in Spanish

Aglowing and fair like a houri on high,
Full of grace and pure like the Morn that peeps
When in the sky the clouds are tinted blue,
Of th' Indian land, a goddess sleeps.

The light foam of the son'rous sea
Doth kiss her feet with loving desire;
The cultured West adores her smile
And the frosty Pole her flow'red attire.

With tenderness, stammering, my Muse
To her 'midst undines and naiads does sing;
I offer her my fortune and bliss:
Oh, artists! her brow chaste ring
With myrtle green and roses red
And lilies, and extol the Philippines!

Our Mother Tongue

A poem originally in Tagalog written by Rizal when he was only eight years old

IF truly a people dearly love
The tongue to them by Heaven sent,
They'll surely yearn for liberty
Like a bird above in the firmament.

BECAUSE by its language one can judge
A town, a barrio, and kingdom;
And like any other created thing
Every human being loves his freedom.

ONE who doesn't love his native tongue,
Is worse than putrid fish and beast;
AND like a truly precious thing
It therefore deserves to be cherished.

THE Tagalog language's akin to Latin,
To English, Spanish, angelical tongue;
For God who knows how to look after us
This language He bestowed us upon.

AS others, our language is the same
With alphabet and letters of its own,
It was lost because a storm did destroy
On the lake the bangka 1 in years bygone.

Memories of My Town

When I recall the days
That saw my childhood of yore
Beside the verdant shore
Of a murmuring lagoon;
When I remember the sighs
Of the breeze that on my brow
Sweet and caressing did blow
With coolness full of delight;

When I look at the lily white
Fills up with air violent
And the stormy element
On the sand doth meekly sleep;
When sweet 'toxicating scent
From the flowers I inhale
Which at the dawn they exhale
When at us it begins to peep;

I sadly recall your face,
Oh precious infancy,
That a mother lovingly
Did succeed to embellish.
I remember a simple town;
My cradle, joy and boon,
Beside the cool lagoon
The seat of all my wish.

Oh, yes! With uncertain pace
I trod your forest lands,
And on your river banks
A pleasant fun I found;
At your rustic temple I prayed
With a little boy's simple faith
And your aura's flawless breath
Filled my heart with joy profound.
Saw I God in the grandeur
Of your woods which for centuries stand;
Never did I understand
In your bosom what sorrows were;
While I gazed on your azure sky
Neither love nor tenderness
Failed me, 'cause my happiness
In the heart of nature rests there.

Tender childhood, beautiful town,
Rich fountain of happiness,
Of harmonious melodies,
That drive away my sorrow!
Return thee to my heart,
Bring back my gentle hours
As do the birds when the flow'rs
Would again begin to blow!
But, alas, adieu! E'er watch
For your peace, joy and repose,
Genius of good who kindly dispose
Of his blessings with amour;
It's for thee my fervent pray'rs,
It's for thee my constant desire
Knowledge ever to acquire
And may God keep your candour!

A Poem That Has No Title
To my Creator I sing
Who did soothe me in my great loss;
To the Merciful and Kind
Who in my troubles gave me repose.

Thou with that pow'r of thine
Said: Live! And with life myself I found;
And shelter gave me thou
And a soul impelled to the good
Like a...
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