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Issue 12 Contributors

Juan Rafael Belgica Jr, one of Bikol's leading poets, is a man of many interests, from history to economics to political science to art, as I remember from our major-less period in college. But he couldn’t deny his genes. The son of the poet-educator Juan Sr (Johnny to his many friends), Jun found himself in poetry, in the Bicol language. With two books of poetry to his name, the first, Duru’ngan, a collaboration with Rafael Banzuela, Jun is hard at work writing, researching and refreshing the Bikol language in poetry. While his first poem “Sa Lukunlukunan kan Pantalan,” written in the 70s, would seem to me the first modern Bikol poem, Jun’s preoccupation now with Western as well as native poetic forms, and his revival of old or rare Bikol words make for a well-rounded and grounded work that can only enrich the Bikol language.

Dan Pinto is a writer, editor, teacher, and artist whose work has brought him to much of the world from Samar to Saudi. He presently heads the Senate publication committee, designs books for his writer friends, and joins online forums and groups on his other interest, computer graphic art. He appears here both as translator and photographer of our cover image.

Frank V. Peñones is one of Bikol’s respected literary icons. He has received writing and study grants from the University of the Philippines, Cultural Center of the Philippines and the Ford International. Author of two bilingual poetry collections Ragang Rinaranga (2005) and Cancion nin Tawong Lipod (upcoming) both published by Agnus Press in Naga City, he has won several times in the Saint Peter Baptist Catholic Mass Media Awards, 2005 Premio Tomas Arejola Para Sa Literaturang Bikol and the Sumagang Awards For Literature and Journalism. Currently, he is finishing his MFA at San Jose State University in California.

Vic Nierva works for the U.P. Institute of Creative Writing, is a publication designer, and being one of the most active Bikol writers, has recently put our his first book of poetry titled Antisipasyon. The Austrialia-based Filipina poet, Merlinda Bobis, also a Bikolana, has this to say about Vic’s first book: “At its best, Vic Nierva’s poetry is fraught with waiting. Metaphor is quietly built up to the final insight. Almost, almost there, but seemingly never handed over… Nierva has been breathing in us through the night.”

Raffi Banzuela, another pioneer in the Bikol revival, had been honed in the college publication and art organizations circuit, as well as in campus leadership and politics, before graduating into an accomplished and award-winning broadcaster, former radio station manager, head of the Mass Communications Program at Aquinas University, and lately University Secretary. The natural Bikolano cadence and accent of his prosody give it a clear and evident public voice, due perhaps to his practice as broadcaster and commentator. Apart from Duru’ngan, Raffi’s books are the essay collection Albay Viejo and the upcoming Selebra, where the powers of the Bikol language and Raffi’s poetry are evident.

Abdon Balde Jr, a premier fictionist in Filipino and winner of several National Book Awards and the Juan C. Laya award for the novel, was an engineer and construction company executive for 30 years before he returned to his real calling, literature. Within the seven years after he retired from his profession he has produced about as many number of books and won about the same number of awards. He writes in Filipino about both the frontier world of construction and the modern and ancient world of the Bikols, and the Filipino. Like our friend Dan Pinto, he appears on our pages as a photographer.

Kristian Cordero, one of our regular contributors, a literature professor at Ateneo de Naga, is one of the busiest poets in Bikol today. The author of three collections of award-winning poetry, Kristian has won several local and national literary awards including the 2004 Premio Tomas Arejola Para sa Literaturang Bikolnon, Homelife Poetry Contest (Second Prize for the years 1999, 2005, 2007 and Grand Prize Winner for 2004), Carlos Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature (for short fiction) and the Madrigal-Gonzales Best First Book Award in 2006. He also received the Outstanding Alumni Award by the University of Saint Anthony, a special citation from the local government of Iriga City and the Melchor Villanueva Centennial Awards for Bikol Literature in 2007.
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"Issue 12 Contributors" was posted by: Our Small Family blogs, under category and permalinks http://our-small-family.blogspot.com/2008/03/issue-12-contributors.html. Ratings: 1010 Votings: 97,687, Monday, March 31, 2008, 5:09 PM.

Issue 11 Contributors

Alfredo Roces is the Filipino artist-writer based in Sydney who has written many books on Filipino culture, history, and art, the latest of which is Adios, Patria Adorada: The Filipino as Ilustrado, the Ilustrado as Filipino (De La Salle University Press), which won the Manila Critics Circle 2006 National Book Award for Social Science. Also a publisher and editor, Roces counts among his notable book projects the encyclopedic multi-volume Filipino Heritage series (unfortunately out of print now). A former student of the artist George Grosz, Roces has exhibited his works in the Philippines and abroad.

Edd Aragon, former and famous cartoonist for the Philippine Daily Express of the Martial Law years, migrated to Sydney in the 1970s and later became editorial illustrator for the Sydney Morning Herald and has thrice bagged the prestigious Artist of the Year award from the Australian Black and White Artists Society. A painter and digital artist, Edd exhibits his works in a triple homecoming show in Manila this April. Called Tres Kantos (Three Corners), the three exhibits in separate venues feature his ultraviolet-reactive paintings, his digital artworks and his editorial cartoons.

Romulo P. Baquiran Jr is one of the leading younger poets in Filipino and has published two books of poetry, Mga Tula ng Paglusong and Onyx. A founding member of the Linangan sa Imahen, Retorika at Arte (LIRA), the long-running poetry clinic founded by National Artist Virgilio Almario (Rio Alma), “Joey” Baquiran is also a member of the Orágon Poets, the Filipinas Institute of Translation (FIT), the Union ng mga Manunulat sa Pilipinas (UMPIL), or the Writiers Union of the Philippines. He is a literature professor at the University of the Philippines.

Teo T. Antonio finished Fine Arts at the University of Santo Tomas but went on to become one of the finest and most prolific poets of his generation. His many books include Biro-biro kung Sanlan (1982), Taga sa Bato (1991), Bagay-bagay (1992), Pira-priasong Bituin (1996), Kalawang sa Patalim (1998), Ornamental (1998), Karikatura at Iba Pang Kontra-Banda (2000), Piping-Dilat (2000), Sa Aking Soledad: Koleksiyon ng mga Tula sa Pag-ibig (2002), Tilad na Dalit (Mga Piling Tula: 1973-1999) (2003), and Pagsunog ng Dayami (2003). Conversant in both the traditional and modern mode of Tagalog poetry, he is considered the reigning “King of the Poetic Joust (Balagtasan).”

Roberto A. Añonuevo, as one of the recent enfant terribles of Filipino poetry, has won numerous prizes at an early age and came into his own as a writing professional as early. He was inducted into the Palanca Awards Hall of Fame in 2000 and received the SEAWRite Award from the King of Thailand in 2004. He has been editor of the defunct Filipino Magazin (FilMag), translator for Diyaryo Filipino, editor providing long critical introductions for many literatry volumes on various authors at the Ateneo de Manila University and other publishers, and now heads WikiFilipino, the Filipino version of the Philippine online encyclopedia-writing project Wikipilipinas. His three poetry books are Paghipo sa Matang-tubig (1994), Pagsiping sa Lupain (2000), and Liyab sa Alaala (2004).

Joi Barrios has a PhD in Literature from the University of the Philippines (2003) and is considered one of today’s leading feminist and activist poets and playwrights writing in both the protest mode and the fine lyric. She presently resides in the United States. Among her publications are Ang Pagiging Babae ay Pamumuhay sa Panahon ng Digma (1990), Bailaya: Mga Dula Para sa Kababaihan (1997), and Prince Charming at Iba Pang Nobelang Romantiko (2001).

Eric Gamalinda presently teaches literature in New York City and has won extensive recognition for his poetry both here and abroad. His poetry books are Fire Poems/Rain Poems (1976), Lyrics from a Dead Language (1981), Zero Gravity (1999), and Amigo Warfare (2007), while his prose works include Peripheral Vision (1992), Planet Waves (1989), Confessions of a Volcano (1990), Empire of Memory (1992), and My Sad Republic (2000), which won for him the 1998 Philippine Centennial Literary Prize. Eric is well-travelled and has enjoyed wirters’ residencies at Bellagio, Italy, Valparaiso, Spain, among others. He has also won the Asiaweek prize, CCP, Palanca and National Book Awards. Award-winning Fil-Am poet Patrict Rosal pays tribute to Eric’s poetry by saying, “I wish I didn't know Eric Gamalinda personally, then my appraisal of his two books of poems Zero Gravity and, very recently, Amigo Warfare as among the absolute best lyrics this country has seen in contemporary literature—and likely longer—could be taken more seriously.”

Jose Y. Dalisay, or Butch, is of course the Filipino novelist who made it to the short list of the Man Booker Prize Asia last year, the newspaper columnist of old pens and sundry literary issues under the title Penman, and the most prominent, most read advocate for the Apple Mac in the Philippines. A prolific writer who also started early as a reporter for various newspapers before going to several writing and teaching fellowships abroad, and whose works can be found from the printed pages to cinema, television and the theater, Butch appears here as a photographer.

Marne L. Kilates, poet, translator, and blogger, is the editor of this online magazine.
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"Issue 11 Contributors" was posted by: Our Small Family blogs, under category and permalinks http://our-small-family.blogspot.com/2008/03/issue-11-contributors.html. Ratings: 1010 Votings: 97,687, Saturday, March 15, 2008, 4:40 PM.

Issue 10 Contributors

Victor Peñaranda, a Palanca Award winner and more recently of the Philippines Free Press Awards for poetry, has traveled extensively in the Philippines for his development work and lately to Bhutan and now to Macedonia on long assignments. Together with Alfred A. Yuson, he edited the now defunct but sorely missed broadsheet-format New Age and literary magazine called Ermita, which brought together the best Filipino literary and artistic talents during its existence of a little more than a year. But Bimboy, as he is known to friends, is first and foremost a poet of a broad consciousness that is however fully grounded on social realities. His many readers await the next to his first book, Voyage in Dry Season, which won the Manila Critics Circle’s National Book Award in 1996.

After almost a decade of working as a freelance photographer in Europe, Maurice Oliver returned to America in 1990. Then, in 1995, he made a life-long dream reality by traveling around the world for eight months. But instead of taking pictures, he recorded the experience in a journal which eventually became poems. And so began his desire to be a poet. His poetry has appeared in numerous national and international publications and literary websites including Potomac Journal, Pebble Lake Review, Taj Mahal Review (India), Dandelion Magazine (Canada), Stride Magazine (UK), and online at thievesjargon.com, interpoetry.com (UK), kritya.com (India), blueprintreview.de (Germany), and is forthcoming in The Arabesques Review (Algeria). His forth chapbook, "One Remedy Is Travel" was published in August '07 at Origami Condom. The editor of the ezine Concelebratory Shoehorn Review (www.concelebratory.blogspot.com) he lives in Portland, Oregon, where he works as a private tutor.

Argee Guevarra, or Roberto (nickname from his initials), is a poet, activist, newspaper columnist for Business World, and lawyer for various activist causes and organizations. As one of the legal counsels of Sanlakas Party, a national coalition of peoples organizations working for the protection of people's rights and welfare, and supporter or legal counsel for opposition personalities, Argee has found himself many times at the receiving end of state harassment including actual arrests and detention. A fellow of the U.P. National Writers Workshop, Argee's first book of poetry is Salimbayan, (Swoop, Sipat Publishing, 1994 ), co-authored with Neal Imperial and Jim Pascual Agustin (also a contributor of this magazine).

Aberjhani, poet, historian, journalist, blogger, and novelist, is one of the most versatile African-American authors writing today. He is co-author of the award-winning Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance (Facts On File); and author of The Wisdom of W.E.B. Du Bois. The recently published Bridge of Silver Wings is his third book of poetry; and Christmas When Music Almost Killed the World his first novel. He is currently at work on the completion of a 17-year book project, titled Elemental: the Power of Illuminated Love, featuring the work of the critically acclaimed award-winning artist Luther E. Vann with poetry and prose by Aberjhani. In addition, he is founder of the popular Creative Thinkers International website.

Jose F. Lacaba, "the poor boy from Pateros [a town near Manila] who went to the rich people's school on a scholarship," the Ateneo de Manila, dropped out on his fourth year as an English major to write for the leading news magazine the Philippines Free Press, under the editorship of the great Nick Joaquin and publisher Teodoro Locsin Sr. He was hired as "proofreader/ copyreader/reporter," and as the last he came into his own politicization. As reporter, he covered the student beat "when the students were involving themselves with the farmers and workers, the people were agitating against the Marcos regime, and the stage was being set for what is now known as the First Quarter Storm." In fact he became the Free Press star reporter and later collected his reportage in the book Days of Disquiet, Nights of Rage (1982). He has since then become a professional and consummate journalist, having edited a succession of magazines, including Filipino Free Press, Asia-Philippines Reader, National Midweek and Philippine Graphic. Apart from being one of our foremost poets in Filipino, with four books of poetry and one translation, Pete is one of our finest screen playwrights, having written several award-winning films (locally and internationally) for the great director Lino Brocka.

Neil Doloricon has been a Dean of the College of Fine Arts at the University of the Philippines and is one of the leading social realist painters of the Philippines. He has mounted numerous solo and group exhibits and is lately experimenting with digital art. He is also a superb printmaker who works adorn book covers, gallery and collectors' walls and rally streamers and placards.

Heber Bartolome is a poet, song writer and painter, and more popularly known as the leader and founder of the nationalist folk and rock group Banyuhay (Metamorphosis). Together his borthers Jess and Levi, they led a resurgence of nationalist popular music which was also both innovative and respectful of Filipino musical traditions. Heber's Banyuhay songs include the immortal Tayo'y mga Pinoy, Nena, and many others. He continues to compose and cut records for both his new and loyal fans.

Saira Peñaranda is the daughter of Bimboy and Jo Peñaranda.
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"Issue 10 Contributors" was posted by: Our Small Family blogs, under category and permalinks http://our-small-family.blogspot.com/2008/03/issue-10-contributors.html. Ratings: 1010 Votings: 97,687, Saturday, March 1, 2008, 4:12 AM.
 

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