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And So Your Poetry Must

by Ericson L. Acosta
Be wary you say of its claims lest you waive art to us millions unworthy of taste and manner lest you be christened peddler of images alien in form pagan in content lest your license be forfeited your ear for resonance your feel for the sublime. And so while you summon the litany of worlds your own words fashion you annul my existence and those of millions whose narratives you say betray poetic tone make burlesque of beauty and thus like scarecrows set even the most heretic muses scurrying back to their sanctum of rules. And so in recollecting your epiphanies you elude the void which is my hunger the famine of millions the empty bowl of history. And so with your eulogies to passion to rage against time to pledge with lifes gift you lull the birth of noise of revenge of bloodshow that shall feed millions complete history and perhaps spare poetry.
(Published in F1, the 1995 Philippine Collegian literary folio edited by Ericson L. Acosta)

Who is Ericson Acosta?

Ericson Acosta is an artist, journalist and cultural worker illegally arrested by members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on February 13, 2011 in Barangay Bay-ang, San Jorge, Samar province in the Eastern Visayan region. He faces trumped-up charges of illegal possession of explosives and is currently detained at the Calbayog City sub-provincial jail.
Ericson Acosta is an activist from the University of the Philippines (UP), the countrys premiere state university. During the 90s, he served as editor of the Philippine Collegian, UPs official student publication. He is a former chairperson of the student cultural group Alay Sining, and of the campus alliance STAND-UP. He was also a member of the Amnesty International in UP. He has worked in the media as segment writer for TV station ABS-CBNs Wanted TV Patrol and as assistant entertainment section editor of the national broadsheet Manila Times. His works as a writer, poet, thespian, singer and songwriter have remained relevant especially to succeeding generations of activists, in and out of the university. He helped in the re-establishment of the Concerned Artists of the Philippines, and has worked closely with the peasant sector. His bias for the poor and oppressed dates back to his campus days. On February 13, 2011, government troopers in San Jorge, Samar arrested him on mere suspicion that he is a member of the New Peoples Army. Ericson was unarmed, carrying only a laptop and some personal belongings, and in the company of a local barangay official when he was arrested without warrant. He was held for three days without charges and subjected to continuous tactical interrogation by the military. A falsified charge of illegal possession of explosives was levied against him and he was eventually detained at the Calbayog sub-provincial jail. His rights continue to be violated each day he remains incarcerated. The fabricated charges are intended to keep him under government scrutiny and control. In a photo released to media by the AFP, Ericsons frail appearance further heightens concerns for his health, more so in view of his dismal prison conditions. More than 300 political prisoners languish in various detention facilities all over the Philippines. Ericson Acosta documents the struggle behind bars with a JAILHOUSE BLOG, which the Free Ericson Acosta Campaign maintains at Free Ericson Acosta! Free All Political Prisoners!

How can you help?

1. Sign the support statement and online petition for Ericson Acostas immediate and unconditional release linked to from the Free Ericson Acosta campaign blog at 2. Write letters of appeal addressed to Philippine authorities to drop trumped-up charges against Ericson Acosta and effect his immediate release. H.E. Benigno Simeon Aquino III President of the Republic of the Philippines Malacaang Palace JP Laurel St., San Miguel Manila 1005 PHILIPPINES Voice: (+632) 735-6201 / 564-1451 to 80 Fax: (+632) 742-1641 / 929-3968 E-mail: / Atty. Leila de Lima Secretary, Department of Justice DOJ Bldg., Padre Faura Manila 1004 PHILIPPINES Fax: (+632) 521-1614 E-mail: 3. Donate to Ericson Acostas legal defense fund through: Isaias Acosta BDO The Block SM City North branch Savings Account No. 00-0251065464 Additional details for international donations: Routing No. 021000089 Swift Code: BNORPHMM 4. Like and Share the Free Ericson Acosta page on Facebook and visit and subscribe to the campaign blog at and Ericsons prison diary at http://acostaprisondiary.blogspot. com for updates on his case and the campaign for his release. 5. Support the campaign to free all political prisoners in the Philippines.

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