Wednesday, September 26, 2007

mi ultimo adios

Rizal Shrine's second floor... it has three rooms: 1) souvenir shop; 2) glass cases showing Jose Rizal's suits/clothes and other stuff; and 3) a room with just writings on the floors and the walls (didn't read those stuff so please dont ask me what are they, this room also shows the lampara (alcohol lamp) and the kusinilya (small stove) in this photo. (If you take a closer look, you'll see my reflection in the glass).

Background why this stove is very important and such is the title of this post.
Rizal's attack on the Spanish occupation is non-violent but his writings/novels irked the Spanish government and friars which led to his arrest and execution. The day before his execution, his mother and sisters visited him in the cell and as they were about to leave, Rizal told them that there is something in the stove. Jose Rizal wrote the poem Mi Ultimo Adios (Huling Paalam in Tagalog), which expresses his love for his native land and hid it in this tiny stove. From this stove his family recovered a folded paper with this poem of 14 five-line stanzas, unsigned and untitled. This poem was circulated to his friends and was known to be his last testament and it was Marciano Ponce who gave the title to the poem.

This is the first stanza of the poem as translated in English: My Last Farewell. To read the whole poem click here.

Farewell, beloved Country, treasured region of the sun,
Pearl of the sea of the Orient, our vanquished Eden!
To you I gladly surrender this melancholy life;
And were it brighter, fresher, gaudier,
Even then I’d give it to you, to you alone would then I give.


bertN said...

When I was still in college we were required to take 12 units of Spanish and one of the things my instructor required of us was to commit to memory Rizal's "Mi Ultimo Dios". The beauty of the poem was lost to me because it was forced on us. I hated my Spanish classes with a passion but now that I am living in Southern California, I hated with equal passion the fact that I missed out on a golden opportunity to learn a new language LOL.

pusa said...

hi bet, i could imagine your frustration.

i was so envious of those who had the chance or was forced to take spanish classes before, sicne it part of the curricula.

and i guess yeah, when something is forced on us we tend to hate it even though its good for us. 'nother reason why i dint bother reading those writings on the wall is taht i felt i already had enough of Jose Rizal while studying :)

Sidney said...

It is an interesting museum. I see you don't really care if photographs are not allowed! I like that spirit of yours!

pusa said...

as i've said sidney, i'm kinda hard headed :) my brother kept his distance from me, he was afraid that i'll get caught and reprimanded again!

Olivier said...

un beau poeme (au debut j'ai eut peur que tu annonces l'arret de ton blog).
a beautiful poem (at the beginning I have was afraid whom you announce the stop of tone blog).

Anonymous said...

I like the photograph and those you published earlier. I just don't know the person the museum is about.

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Art L said...

As part of the course I took,
we spent one semester reading
Rizal's novels, 'Noli Mi Tangere'
and 'El Filibusterismo'in English.
I would probably love reading
those novels again but during
those times they were just a
distraction and I have to get the
passing grade.

Anonymous said...

Speaking in English, he told his mother and sister that "there is something inside the lamp" because the Spanish guards who was with him cannot understand English.

Oh, look at that. I learned a thing in my History class. :D

Ming_the_Merciless said...

Love your Rizal Shrine series.

Lizza said...

I've been lurking here for a while now, and I enjoy looking at your pictures and reading your commentary. Your Rizal Shrine pics are great.

I loved this poem and reading it again after all these years is a pleasure. "Morir is descansar." That line still gives me goosebumps.

pusa said...

hi abraham, sorry i'd been remiss about introducing jose rizal to foreigners, will post something about him later.

jake, quite right! hehe at least di sayang baon mo nun araw na tinuro yun haha

thank you all for commenting

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