The signature page of the 1898 Treaty of Paris

By Gali Makatingkik


An archipelago and its people were secretly sold
By the Iberian leech to the North American thief.
For 20 million dollars worth in silver and gold
They consummated their greed and mischief.

For three centuries, three decades and three years
The Castillian leech was drunk with the “indio’s” blood.
For another century, Uncle Sam’s little brown brothers
Were deep-fried like French fries in their own lard.

Gold is god and glory for the conquistador-rapist of brown lands.
Gore is the soul of liberty for the North American usurper.
With a treaty they memorialized the works of their bloody hands,
Today, shameless and remorseless, they want us to write it in water.

Ah, it is just to throw up in the faces of the corrupt and the mighty
Whose ideals of justice are enshrined in the execution of brown braves.
So I’ll say, the pox on that long dead Spanish king! The pox on benevolent trickery!
I am Higaonon, and by my laws I recognize no treaty of thieves.


(GALI’S VERSES FOR THE UNIVERSE is a poetry column of Gali Makatingkik (something that sparks fire), the pen name of a Higaonon poet and novelist. Some of his poems have been anthologized in local and international publications. He is currently finishing his poetry collection entitled Statistically in Love. Reach him via