Nikay Paredes: Hurt Business

Hurt Business

“I deserve all my sacrifices”
- Emmanuel “Manny” Dapidran Pacquiao

Boxing is, you know, hit-
ting each other—we do
a—we do mitts a couple

of rounds and I like—land
up the middle an upper cut.
Only fighter who can out-

Rocky Rocky—can hit and
am not hurt, can do mitts
but I don’t want to dis-

appoint—stay my feet on
the ground, so I think—
never cut the hair before

the fight—like feel I’m weak,
like pray before, then sing
after. That’s the only me—

Saranggani Southpaw—rose
and a green snake—meteor
and a left hook, you know?


Lactacyd White Intimate Feminine Wash

Roomsful
of focus groups
concur,

“Too-tight clothing
darkens skin
around

the intimate area”
   —what brouhaha!

          I’ll take
before & after shots
of my hoo-ha,

answer
the message board
query: CAN I

USE IT FOR
MY FACE TOO?

          My dear lack-
of-white,

lugubrious split,
ignore them.

Desert their
allergenic
formulae,

their thumb-sized
art.          O my dark,

engulf them—


Port Glory

A friend asked that I use the word indehiscent in a poem, but I put the fruit back on the cart because it reeked of pesticide. These mangoes came to America in large container vans moved by steel cranes and old barges. There’s a city, I say when I encounter an impressive view. It starts to rain and everything in Chinatown is go, go, go. Order, eat and pay at the counter. A barge peals its indecent horn. Go home. Sometimes the poem is sweeter than the fruit.

Editor's Note: These poems originally appeared on our old site.


Jasmine Nikki “Nikay” C. Paredes was born and raised in Cebu, Philippines. She earned a BFA in Creative Writing from the Ateneo de Manila University and an MFA in Poetry from Sarah Lawrence College. Her work has appeared in several publications, including As/Us Journal, El Aleph Magazine,Tuesday; An Art Project and Drunken Boat. She currently resides in Metro Manila, Philippines and teaches Poetry at the Fine Arts Program of Ateneo de Manila University. Her chapbook, We Will See the Scatter, was published by dancing girl press.