Thursday, October 23, 2008


Farewell, beloved country, sun-kissed land,
pearl of the eastern sea, lost paradise!
Gladly I yield my sad, my withered life:
if it were brighter, fresher and more fair,
still I would yield it for your happiness.

On battlefields, struggling with wild delight,
others for your sake selfless met their doom.
No matter where- be it cypress, laurel, iris,
scaffold or plain, combat or martyrdom,
if it was for their country and their home.

I die when I behold the sky turn red,
the last day breaking after gloomy night:
if you need cochineal to stain your dawn
then shed my blood, pour it while there is time,
gild it with tints of its emergent light!

My dreams when I was scarcely a child, a youth,
my dreams when I was young, still in my prime,
were to see you, jewel of the eastern sea,
one day with dark eyes dry, with smooth brow raised,
no frown, no wrinkles, tainted with no crime.

Dream of my life, my burning bright desire,
hail! Shouts my soul, now ready to go forth.
Hail! O how sweet to fall to give you flight,
to die to give you life, beneath your sky,
to sleep eternally in your charm earth.

If on my tomb one day you see a flower,
Simple and lowly, pushing through the grass,
lift it towards your lips and kiss my soul,
and on my brow I’ll feel, in the cold grave,
the touch, the warm breath of your tenderness.

Let the moon see me with its calm, soft beams,
let the dawn send its rays, so briefly splendid,
let the wind moan, earnestly murmuring;
and if upon my cross a bird should light,
let the bird tune its song of troubles ended.

Let the hot sun evaporate the rains,
and my cries drive them back to their abode;
let one who loves weep for my early end,
and if in the cool dusk one prays for me,
pray, too, my country, for my rest in God.

Pray for all those who perish unfulfilled,
for those who suffer torments unrelieved,
for our poor mothers groaning bitterly,
for orphans, widows, tortured prisoners,
pray for yourself, that you may be reprieved.

And when the dark enfolds the graveyard, leaving
only the dead to watch the long night through,
do not disturb their rest, their mystery:
if you hear strains of harp or psaltery,
dear country, it is I, singing for you.

And if my grave, forgotten by the world,
has neither cross nor headstone left to mark it,
let it be tilled by man, tended and sown,
and let my ashes, while there still is time,
become the very dust upon your carpet.

No matter then that I should be forgotten.
Your air, your space, your values, will know my wraith.
I’ll be a throbbing, pure note in your ear;
with scents, lights, colours, whispers, songs and groans
repeating still the essence of my faith.

Country I worship, grief of all my griefs,
dear Philippines, hear now the last farewell!
I leave you all-- my fathers, those I love;
I go where neither slaves nor tyrants are;
where God is king, where faith makes no man kill.

Fathers, brothers, parts of my soul, farewell!
friends of my childhood for ever lost!
Give thanks, that I rest from the weary day!
Farewell, fair stranger, happiness, my friend!
To die-- farewell , my loves ones!—is to rest!