NPNR

Steno Padilla

Nagsimula sa isang larawan
ng hubad na katawan
ang maikli nating usapan.
“Hi,” bati ko, sabay padala
ng isang malinaw na kuha.

“No Pic, No Reply”
kasi ang nakalagay
sa matipid mong profile.
Sinunod ko naman
at ikaw ay pinagbigyan.

Sagot mo ay ‘di nakamtan
agad kahit kita ko naman
ang bilog na kulay-luntian.
Online ka, lalaking hubad;
pansinin mo ako, brad.

“Other pic,” sabi mo bigla.
Aking puso ay nagitla,
tila napalundag sa sigla.
At ako ay nagpalipad
ng bagong larawan agad-agad.

Sumagot ka naman, “Nice,
chinito. Like your eyes.”
Kinilig ako bigla. Ayieee!
Ito na ba ang hinihintay
na sandali? Bongga ka, ‘day!

“Pic mo?” balik ko sa kanya,
at hindi ko kinaya
ang kanyang ipinadala.
Adonis, ikaw ba ‘yan?
Gusto na kitang matikman.

Maghunos-dili ka,
sa sarili ay ipinaalala;
baka poser lang pala.
Alam mo namang nagkalat
ang doble-kara at huwad.

Ngunit nang magpadala
ka ng isa pang kuha,
pagdududa ko ay nabura.
“Ikaw na ba si Mr. Right?”
Ang true love of my life?

Sinungkit ko ang pangarap
sa tanong na mahirap:
Wanna meet up?

Nang “loc” mo’y ipadala,
napasigaw ng Aleluya!

NPNR

With one picture

of a naked body

our conversation began.

“Hi,” I greeted, before sending

a clear shot of myself.

because “No Pic, No Reply”

was stated

in your almost-bare profile.

I heeded

and gave what you wanted.

I didn’t get your reply

right away even if I saw

the green dot.

You were online, naked man;

notice me, brad (short for “brother”)

“Other pic,” you suddenly said.

My heart was surprised,

it seemed to jump with glee.

And I immediately launched

a new picture towards you.

Then you replied, “Nice,

chinky-eyed. Like your eyes.”

I was too excited (or kilig). Ayieee!

Is this the long-awaited

moment? Bongga ka, ‘day!

“Your pic,” I replied to him,

and I couldn’t handle

what he sent.

Is that you, Adonis?

I want a taste of you now.

Get yourself together,

I reminded myself;

he may be a poser, for all you know.

You know very well that there are many of them

the two-faced and the fake ones.

But when you sent

another picture,

all my doubts were cleared.

“Are you my Mr. Right?”

The true love of my life?

I picked my dream

with a difficult question:

Wanna meet up?

When you sent your “loc,”

and I shouted Alelluia!

PROJECT GRACE-UP

NATIONAL LGBTQ+

WRITERS WORKSHOP