Wednesday, December 03, 2003

To kill a God

For some reason, I found Jose Garcia Villa's republished book "Anchored Angels" in a bookshelf last night. I knew that the corpse had edited said book. I believe I even went to a public launch of the book at Arkipelago many moons ago. But I just never read it. In retrospect, I don't believe I was ready.

At midnight, I began to dive into the anchored angel's world of commas, icon bashing, and basic war against God. Such absolute egotism, basic drive, and epic disappointment! It was so thrilling to watch from the sidelines as Doveglion took on God in a pugilistic exhibition. A matador dueling with a bull. The old lechon cook dueling with dusk.

Doveglion needs to be read by every single Pilipino who is searching for the self. Villa provides enough helping for you and you and you and me. It is not classic diasporic reading which explains why you are here and tells you what to do with yourself. Rather, it maps the way for the future when you are at peace with your diasporic self and ask "Is this all there is to it?"

Villa skipped the diasporic and went straight to kill his God. And kill the God he did. In beautiful ways. In unimagined ways. In poetic ways. Not just blood and gore. Not without honor. Not without grace. He killed God, took the ashes and fashioned God after himself, with commas to make sure the pacing never got away.

(I remember high school and my fascination with em dashes. I would put them at the end of sentences. My English teacher Mr. Hickman refused to allow such indignities to God. He punished the transgressor by one grade for each occurrence. I refused to let go of em dashes because they paused; I needed that pause damn it! It was to breathe. To recollect. To reexamine thyself.

And now to think, maybe the spirit that drove doveglion to wondrous heights was simply visiting me in high school! The spirit must not have liked the snow in New York. Ha-ha-ha! Take that, Archangel Mr. Hickman!)

So go and watch Villa kill his God. You might not be ready for it, but you will have to sooner or later.

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