Monday, March 30, 2015

Armageddon Ticking

Armageddon Ticking
Overcrowded Earth, Manila 

Armageddon in human hands released,
piece by piece ticking with the clock;
innocence denied, sanity defied
to the final shock.

Time capsules all into infinity:
pleasure and pain, evil and goodness -
all that is on planet earth,
into emptiness.

It's Sodom revived, so with the Flood
and Vesuvius a thousand times;
and in war none but the innocent
is the price.

And the god in man and man in God
in futile struggle comes to end
the earth shall be no longer,
so with a heaven.

Fabled paradise shall be no more,
lost and regained, and finally gone;
Then a new world shall rise - perhaps
without man. ~ 

Author's Note:
I photographed this aerial View of Manila harbor aboard Pal flight from Roxas City to Manila August 6, 2012

Waterfall - Link of Land and Sky, Like Body and Soul

Dr Abe V Rotor

Waterfall painting in acrylic, by AVRotor 2015

Reach the sky through the waterfall,
     from cloud to rain down the stream,
cascading, tumbling, in a column,
     link of reality and ones dream. 

And down the river of no return
     meandering  through the valley,
seeking its destination the sea 
     in a never ending story. 

Life is like that of the waterfall 
     link of time and space and all, 
with neither beginning nor end, 
     the essence of body and soul. ~  

Global Warming in Painting, Fiction and Mythology

 Dr A V Rotor
 Fiery Cyclone in the Sky 

It is a storm but its eye is not of calm,
sultry but neither coy nor kind;
seeking a home of its own to settle down,
like the monster of Frankenstein. 

Man-made Forest Fire (AVR 2015)

Prometheus defied of his gift of fire to man
by man himself unrelenting in greed,
adoring Midas and other gods on Zeus side;
  Hercules in our midst is what we need.

Note: In Greek mythology, Prometheus stole fire from the supreme god Zeus and gave it to man for the betterment of his life. As punishment, he was bound in an island and tortured by a flesh-eating eagle. He was later rescued by Hercules.   

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Landscape Therapy

"… when the curtain opens and the horizon rolls on with life passing this way but once, yet it’s more than destiny, more than eternity."
Painting and Poem by Dr Abe V Rotor

Landscape Therapy in acrylic, AVR 2014.
 Landscape therapy is gaining back clarity and focus, though slowly from strained vision of light and shadow, of passing cars and blinking screens;  

Landscape therapy is getting the frayed nerves back to function in reflexes governed by the conscious and unconscious mind in peace and harmony;

Landscape therapy is when primary colors once more come as true colors, secondary colors and tertiary ones as sweet progeny of color combination;   

Landscape therapy is when the forests appear once more lush green, the mountains in the distance blue, and the sky azure as the deep sea;

Landscape therapy is when the consciousness once more map the migrating birds in the sky, the fish in the stream, a drop of pond water teeming with life;
Landscape therapy is when the biological clock is readjusted with the passing of seasons, understanding the reason behind Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring;

Landscape therapy is when - in the midst danger, courage is being afraid but doing brave thing, for the landscape of life is often perceived in duality;

Landscape therapy is when the swamp dries up to become a grassland, to become a woodland, in a magic sere that spawns rich life’s diversity;

Landscape therapy is finding once more a niche, bridging the past and present, tradition and modern, the living and the non-living world in Rousseau’s scenery;       

Landscape therapy is when raucous urchins sound in lilting joy; thunder a Beethoven’s bass drum, chirping a language in music – all in thanksgiving;

Landscape therapy is when a person like a prisoner in Plato’s Allegory frees himself to discover the realities of the world, which is the aim of education;   

Landscape therapy is when life is viewed with the power of the imagination – romantic or real or abstract - yet find meaning in reverence to the Creator;

Landscape therapy is when the curtain is lifted and the horizon rolls on with life passing this way but once, yet it’s more than destiny, more than eternity. ~

Murals, Murals on the Wall

"Where man makes a living, a garden by his hands he makes,
At the foot of a hill, on the tip of a pen, on rivers and lakes..."  
Dr Abe V Rotor

Tropical Rainforest. A composite painting of a running stream through the woods, apparently near human habitation as shown by the presence of promenaders and fishing enthusiasts enjoying themselves as in a park. Also, the stream empties into a pond of Nymphaea and lotus on the foreground giving the impression that the scene is at the edge of a clearing. Nonetheless the whole scene speaks of an undisturbed ecosystem. The presence of wildlife shows that this is their natural habitat. SPUQC, AVR

Gather the clouds into fog and mist,
rain and stream;
Gather the fish, the birds and the beasts
to a peaceful reign.

Light in the Woods. Are there images on the painting? How many trees are there. Can you see a face? Whose face is it? The inverted "V" perspective creates a panoramic effect leading the eye toward the center and background. SPUQC AVR

It inspired a soul to write a book*
that touches the eye and heart;
This little light in a nook shines 
where good and evil part.

* Light the the Woods, by AVR, Megabooks 1995

Ruins of Colonialism. Keenness in history leads the hand to re-create events in composite order. The sky and landscape blend well and create a peaceful ambiance in contrast with that of the ruins on the foreground. Infinity can be felt towards the background where boundaries of land and sky dissolve in mist and cloud. SPUQC AVR

Ruins, your silence disturbs at this time of tempest,
When dawn breaks like any dawn sans rays of noble past;

The day shall come to put people again to the test,
Like spring, rise again from their state of outcast.

Composite Landscape. There are three scenic parts arranged vertically to suit the design of the sala of a private residence. Upon entering one is led to look up and down the painting. Thus the elongated design has a foreshortening effect. There was originally a rainbow, but it was toned down so as not to steal the show, so to speak. It's suggestiveness however, has a strong effect from the balcony eye level. (DasmariƱas Village, Makati MM)

Where man makes a living, a garden by his hands he makes,

At the foot of a hill, on the tip of a pen, on rivers and lakes,
He contends - even only a piece of that Paradise lost -, he regains;
From knowledge and disobedience, the whole world gains.

Doves Flying at Dawn. There is a feeling of ascendancy in this painting. The diagonal perspective enhances such movement, while splashes of light heightens daybreak. The rough sea and dark foreground give contrast to the painting. The hideous presence of large reptiles creates enigma as to what the artist wanted to imply. Mystery in art is an important element. (Wall Mural SPU-QC)

Take me from this world a moment

to be with You in this holy event;
From your seat to down below I see

my friends, my enemies - and me.

Watershed. Unlike the first painting the perspective is normal "V" which explains the title - a funnel shaped valley to catch and store rainfall and in the process make a natural garden with the colors of spring, summer and    autumn, thus exuding a fairyland effect. The landscape speaks clearly of a pristine environment far and free from humans. (Wall mural SPU-QC)

Ask Ceres or the mightiest God of all -
if Nature keeps herself better if we depart;
With her housekeeping and her art - 
was Paradise redeemed after the Fall?

Under the Sea Cavern. Simulating stalactites and stalagmites in caves, the artist simulated the same conditions on some coral reef ledges where the sun could hardly penetrate. Mystery lies inside the cavern which only the imagination can fathom. A predator waits for its prey, small fishes group together for safety, shell fish cling lazily on rocks, while seaweeds sway freely like a curtain. It is a stage of sort where drama of life in the deep takes place everyday. (Wall mural, SPUQC, AVR). 

I have wondered many times if fish ever sleep
or they just lie down very still

in some quiet deep, like a flock of sheep
after their fill lie on a grassy hill.
Other creatures gain this way their ease
and man by the power of his will
takes the long and winding road to peace 
searching for that quiet pool or hill. ~

Friday, March 27, 2015

Wooden Tower

Dr Abe V Rotor
Sammy, Sab-A Swamp, Leyte

A child looks at the world a pillar
Of plenty, remote from emptiness;
In the ephemeral of a dying star,
Splendor ends in forgetfulness.

One day the pillar will be gone,
As it releases the sleeping ancient sun,
Sparing silver for the woodsman's son,
And thirty pieces for the brawn.

While the rivers and rivulets run dry,
Orphaned from the mountain high,
Wouldn't Heaven rather send a sigh, 
Than somewhere the young ones cry?

Light in the Woods, 1995 Megabooks

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Kamote Tops Beauty

Dr Abe V Rotor 
Living with Nature School on Blog
Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid (People's School-on-Air) with Ms Melly C Tenorio
738 DZRB AM Band, 8 to 9 evening class Monday to Friday
(Model: Miss Gelyn S Gabao, 19 Filipina)
Kamote (Ipomea batatas) tops contain more minerals and vitamins than any other vegetables, or its equivalent weight in meat and poultry. It is a glow food that enhances natural beauty and health, and gives that gait, poise and stride that many beauties display. It is the secret to acquiring and maintaining natural immunity and high resistance against diseases and other ailments. It contains substances that sharpen the brain and quicken responses to situations and the environment. 

It is a vegetable all year round. In summer kamote is grown in the fields and gardens for its enlarged roots or tubers which are rich in carbohydrates (go food) and rich in protein (grow food). In the habagat, it grows wild and luxuriant on hilltops, on levees and dikes, on the uplands, covering wide areas, keeping weeds down and protecting the soil from erosion. 

Kamote tops make an excellent dish with mungo and pork, bulanglang with shrimp or fish, and mushroom, or cooked in other recipes, or served as salad, blanched with red, ripe tomatoes and sliced onions, with a dash of salt, or a dip of fish sauce - bagoong or patis. Or cooked in tinola in place of pepper leaves, and green papaya. Why not blanch the tops on rice in its final stage of cooking? Add bagoong squeezed with calamansi or lemon. 

Kamote tops, maligned for being a poor man's food, rise to the apex of the food pyramid, top the list health programs, and doctors' prescription. Kamote tops occupies the rank of malunggay, alugbati, talinum, and spinach, relegating lettuce and other crucifers - cabbage and cauliflower and pechay - to the backseat.

Kamote tops are safe to health and the environment because they don't carry residues of pesticides applied on the field on many crops, and also those of toxic metals like lead, mercury and cadmium. Damaged parts are simply discarded, harvesting only the succulent and healthy leaves for further safety and better presentation.

Kamote tops come in green and purple, characteristic of the plant varieties, but in both cases, the same nutritive values are derived, with some advantage from the purple variety which contains xanthophyll in addition to chlorophyl. Both are recommended for anemic persons for their high iron content, and to those suffering from poor bone development, poor eyesight, and poor metabolism.

Beauties come naturally with good food, simple and active lifestyle, in the rural areas where sunshine, clean air and surrounding, make a perfect combination from which spring the true beauty of man and woman, as compared to the makeup beauty from cosmetics, expensive salons, and by the so-called wonders of science and technology like liposuction and surgery. Why can't we simply eat kamote tops more often?~

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

The Lighter Side: Likuan U and Lee Kuan Yew

With apology to the late Prime Minister who made Singapore a modern city state.  
Dr Abe V Rotor
Living with Nature - School on Blog
Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid with Ms Melly C Tenorio
738 DZRB AM, 8 to 9 evening class, Monday to Friday

Filipinos are fond of witty expressions. This is one of them - a road sign along Quezon Avenue near the Lung Center of the Philippines, Diliman, QC. I saw a similar one near the Fort. Creative minds can go far, and trivial, too.

For those who have no inkling of the homonym similarity, Lee Kuan Yew is Singapore's living legend - father of this modern city state. You pronounce his name the same way you read in Pilipino, 

By the way, somebody has removed the sign. I miss it now whenever I make a u-turn in that busy intersection. ~ 

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Avoid Recycling Toxic Wastes

Dr Abe V Rotor

1. Recyling is not recommended where pollution is heavy and unabated such as this mudflat.  Silt in clean environment is excellent garden soil.

2. Watch out for toxic materials
•         Toxic metals: Cadmium, Mercury, Lead
•         Hospital and medical wastes, including radioactive materials
•         Pesticide residues, especially dioxin
•         Industrial wastes, like acids, Freon, alkalis
3. Oil Spill Recycling? Not with hydrocarbon compounds; not in the case of oil spill. The
Petron oil spill in Guimaras in 2005 destroyed thousands of hectares of marine and terrestrial irreversibly upsetting ecosystems and depriving the residents of their livelihood.

4. Chemical pesticides are concentrated in food chains by biological magnification. ~

Passing Breeze of Life

Dr Abe V. Rotor

Parks and Wildlife Center, QC

I know now where this kingdom lies,
within the boundaries of eternity
for true faith is blind and never dies,
in our yearning for love and piety.

Reach for the stars, though beyond your reach;
imagination, its string in your hand;
and creation may be at your fingertips,
though written only on the sand.

Omnipotent one Breath that be,
from clay to flesh to humanity;
like breeze passing tree after tree
sowing the seed of divinity. ~

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Gem Perched on a Tree

Gem Perched on a Tree
Dr Abe V Rotor
Atop Tagaytay Ridge, March 24 2013

The brightest gem perched on a tree is looking through,
     to see in its shadow a threesome free;   
to whose care these are to the world and humanity, 
     a gift of a Creator, loving and true.

Utility Wheel Chair Mobile: Road Car, Utility vehicle, and Wheel Chair

Inventor Jose Pepito A Rojas
Dr Abe V Rotor

     Boying Alconis Rojas poses with family and relatives with his three-in-one invention for today's active living, to serve the increasing number of senior citizens, persons with disability (PWD), including the infirmed getting out of their confine, and technology becoming practical and people-oriented.         

    Side view of the UWC Mobile shows simplicity in design, made of all-surplus and easy to assemble parts, allowing details in innovations and personal aesthetics. Options: TV and radio, GPS, a detachable roof-umbrella easy to open and fold.  It is its simplicity and practicality that makes the UWC Mobile universal, revolutionizing today's two-, three- and four-wheel transports. It is home made.      
    Rear view of the UWC Mobile shows a series of standard car batteries conveniently tucked under a plastic armchair. Wall socket charging for a few hours is all that the prime mover, a simple electric motor, needs for  a few days' service up to a week or two.

    The UWC Mobile is an alternative to the ear-splitting noisy motorbike and tricycle (it simply moves around virtually noiseless). It offers a no-pollution alternative to gasoline- and diesel-fed engines (internal-combustion engines). The UWC Mobile is for and of the people. It is a hallmark of a PWD's ingenuity in his own way to be of service to his kind - and humanity for that matter. ~

    Sunday, March 15, 2015

    You can be a story teller- start with anecdotes

    Dr Abe V Rotor
    Living with Nature School on Blog
    Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid with Ms Melly C Tenorio
    738 DZRB AM Band, 8 to 9 evening class, Monday to Friday

    The word anecdote means unpublished. True to its nature an anecdote is typically oral and ephemeral.It is a short tale narrating an interesting or amusing biographical incident. It is always based on real life, an incident involving actual persons, whether famous or not, in real places. It sets a stage of provocation, more than mere entertainment or narration.

    Abraham Lincoln is regarded as the father of the Anecdote. He used it effectively in his administration as president of the United States. And people today use the same technique on many occasions.

    Abraham Lincoln, master of the art of telling stories in anecdotes.

    What make a good anecdote?
    A. It is characterized by
    • Witticism
    • Humor
    • Positivism and inspirational
    • Informative and educational

    B. It is a combination of these elements that make a good story, depending on the topics and application.
    • As a speaker/ resource person
    • Presiding in meetings and conferences
    • Informal gatherings /parties
    • Writing, news, features
    • Broadcasting – radio and TV

    C. Stories are used as tool in
    • Driving a point indirectly and diplomatically
    • Hitting the nail on the head, so to speak
    • Friendly advice and reminder
    • Admiring a person, institution or place
    • Tapping a shoulder in words, kudos, congratulations

    D. An anecdote is never
    • Moralism (Even a homily should strive not to proselytize.)
    • Criticism, especially on persons
    • Bulgarism – discreet, dignified, unkind words are avoided.
    • Familiarism – not all too familiar topics
    • Fatalism – bato bato sa langit syndrome
    • Propagandism – and not politicizing

    Here's a popular anecdote about US President Abraham Lincoln after delivering his famous Gettysburg Address. As a background to the story, Edward Everett a popular elderly to his community was the first to deliver a very long speech before Lincoln delivered his very brief address.

    This is how Quote Magazine describes the occasion in an anecdote.

    Perhaps Edward Everett talked a bit too long at Gettysburg, but he was an old man then, by the standards of his day – within a few months of his seventieth birthday. And this was the culminating glory of a long career. But Everett was among those who perfected the classic qualities of the Lincoln address. In a note to the President the following day he said: “I should be glad if I could flatter myself that I came as near to the central idea of the occasion in two hours as you did in two minutes.”

    With his customary graciousness President Lincoln replied: "In our respective parts yesterday, you could not have been excused to make a short address, or I a long one.”

    Story telling is an art. Strive for the state-of-the-art of story telling.~

    Leaf Skeleton: Painting and Verse

    Dr Abe V Rotor

                      Leaf Skeleton, painting in acrylic by AVR 2013 

    When once living veins through which life flows, 
          now the relics of a youthful past;
    your flowers the abode of your enemies* 
          hidden by your beauty in their lust.    

    * A colony of aphids and red ants.

    Painting: Birds in the bush

    Birds fly fast or sit at ease; they sing with few notes to trace, like passing breeze in the trees.Dr Abe V Rotor
    Birds (16" 28") painting in acrylic by the author 2012

    They chirp, but you don't see them,
         only leaves moving, rustling;
    their becks red, their eyes sullen,
         and they blend with everything.

    When you get near to admire,
         they shun, they stop moving,
    silence the rule of their game,  
         discreet and subtle warning.

    Birds are indeed real strange,
         they fly fast or sit at ease;
    they sing with few notes to trace,
         like passing breeze in the trees. ~    

    Compose a song, make the poem the lyrics of a country song accompanied by guitar. 
    Painting is for sale. Call Dr Abe V Rotor 9396331.  Complimentary copies of author's winning books:
    Living with Nature series, Light in the Woods, Light from the Old Arch

    Wednesday, March 11, 2015

    Nicanor Abelardo and Francisco Santiago - Titans in Philippine Music

    They perfected the Kundiman, distinctly Filipino into world class sonata and art song.
    Dr Abe V Rotor 

    Nicanor Abelardo (1893-1934) "Father of the Sonata in the Philippines".

    Composer, pianist, and teacher.  His most popular works include the official song of the University of the Philippines,U.P. Beloved, Magbalik Ka Hirang, Himutok, Nasaan Ka Irog, Kundiman ng Luha, Bituing Marikit, and Mutya ng Pasig.

    t age five the young Abelardo learned solfeggio  and how to play the bandurria; at six he was already able to play the William Tell Overture on the guitar; at age eight, he composed a waltz, Ang Unang Buko, He later learned to play the piano while working for his uncle, painter Juan Abelardo, in Manila, where he studied in primary schools.  He was barely 15 years old when he taught music in .schools in San Ildefonso and San Miguel, Bulacan,
    Before he enrolled at the University of the Philippines Conservatory of Music, he worked as a pianist in pubs and theaters in Manila.

    He eventually became a full-fledged instructor and obtained his teacher’s certificate in science and composition in 1921. In 1924, he became the head of the Conservatory’s composition department. He pursued further studies at the Chicago Musical College.

    When he returned to the Philippines, he continued teaching at U.P. He also taught music to students in a boarding house run by his family. Among his students were National Artist Antonino Buenaventura, Alfredo Lozano and Lucino Sacramento.
    Abelardo was credited for bringing the kundiman to the level of art. He also composed music for the sarswela as well as songs in different musical forms. He completed more than 140 compositionsHe was given the title the "Father of the Sonata in the Philippines".

    Our foremost Kundiman composer also showed the elements of modernism in his music. This is heard in his “Cinderella Overture” and Sinfonietta for Strings.

    He died on March 21, 1934, at the age of 41. He left behind a number of unfinished works, including a symphony, an opera, and a concerto.The main theater of the Cultural Center of the Philippines, and the U.P. College of Music were named after him.

     Francisco Santiago (1889-1947) The Father of Kundiman Art Song. 

    A renowned pianist, composer and teacher, he earned his masters degree and doctorate in music from the Conservatory of Chicago in 1924. College of Music from 1930-1946. Among his compositions are Kundiman and Anak Dalita, the first art song kundiman, was sung Royal Court of Spain upon the request of King Alfonso II. His masterpiece Concerto in B flat minor for pianoforte and orchestra was presented at the Chicago Music School, where he received his doctorate degree in 1924.

    He became the Director of the University of the Philippines Conservatory of Music from 1930 to 1946. He also directed the music for such films as ManileƱa, Madaling Araw, and Pakiusap. Other compositions are  "Sakali Man", "Hibik ng Filipinas", "Pakiusap", "Ang Pag-ibig", "Suyuan", "Alaala Kita", "Ikaw at Ako", "Ano Kaya ang Kapalaran?", "Hatol Hari Kaya?", "Sakali't Mamatay", "Dalit ng Pag-ibig", "Aking Bituin", "Madaling Araw" and "Pagsikat ng Araw". 

    He died in September 28, 1947. Twenty-one years later, he was given a posthumous award as Patnubay ng Sining at Kalinangan by the City of Manila. A hall at BDO Makati head office is named Franscisco Santiago Hall in his honor. 

    Visit Listen to popular Kundiman songs sung by the country’s best singers.

    Monday, March 9, 2015

    Sanity on the Road in Crisis

    Dr Abe V Rotor

    Anarchy on the road: truck ban violation; smoke belching bus  
    Road construction: death trap
    Distractions - major cause of road accidents

    Disappearing sidewalk - and road. ~