To the Philippines

By Jose Rizal
Translated by Nick Joaquin

Warm and beautiful like an hour of yore,
as gracious and as pure as the break of dawn
when darling clouds take on a sapphire tone,
sleeps a goddess on the Indian shore.

The small waves of the sonorous sea assail
her feet with ardent, amorous kisses, while
the intellectual West adores her smile;
and the old hoary Pole, her flower veil.

My Muse, most enthusiastic and elate,
sings to her among naiads and undines;
I offer her my fortune and my fate.

With myrtle, purple roses, and flowering greens
and lilies, crown her brow immaculate,
O artists, and exalt the Philippines!

Source WikiPilipinas

A Filipinas
(En el album de Escultores Filipinos)

Ardiente y bella cual huri del cielo
Graciosa y pura cual naciente aurora
Cuando las nubes de zafir colora,
Duerme una diosa del indiano suelo.

Besa sus plantas con amante anhelo
La leve espuma de la mar Sonora;
El culto Ocaso su sonrisa adora
Y el cano Polo su florido velo.

Mi Musa, balbuciente con ternura,
La canta entre las Nayades y Ondinas;
Yo lo ofrezco mi dicha y mi ventura.

De verde mirto y rosas purpurinas
Y azucenas cenid su frente pura,
Artistas, y ensalzad a Filipinas!

Febrero 1880

This sonnet is by Dr. Jose Rizal, the National Hero of the Philippines. Today is the 116th year of Philippine Independence and it is therefore appropriate to feature this poem which resonates the sonneteer’s love and appreciation for his country and its people.

Embed from Getty Images

Maligayang Araw ng Kasarinlan! (Happy Independence Day!)

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