FOR KIAN (Victim of Extra Judicial Killings)

Soon the dead will themselves break their silence
Rattling their bones, they will march down the streets
chanting the truth murderous bullets hid
in shallow graves, the truth turns and festers

escaping into the air we breathe, sanitized
with lies more noxious than death. What sorcery
makes saints of monsters and monsters of innocents
hoodwinks eyes to see bloodshed as cleansing rain?

And blood is pouring, pouring like an endless rain
the executioner jumps on the puddles with abandon
until the blood of an innocent stained his hands

indifferent eyes woke to the horror, recognized
in the dead their child, brother, or friend, and they cried
for the humanity that they have once lost and found.



Kian was a 17 ear old boy who was shot to death – execution style –  by Philippine policemen in connection with the Philippines’ war on drugs.  CCTV footage showed him being dragged into an alley by two policemen only to be shot twice by a third.  After the fact, the police say that Kian was a drug dealer based on social media posts.  A government  official declared that his death was a happily isolated incident.  In any case, the government is spinning this tragedy any which way they can.

Written for DVerse Poets’ Open Link Night following the free verse sonnet prompt by Bjorn.



37 thoughts on “FOR KIAN (Victim of Extra Judicial Killings)

  1. Nice tribute for Kian. Ngayon ang libing niya. I hope they would punish those who killed him. It is not an isolated case, it is plain MURDER.

  2. This part stood out for me:

    And blood is pouring, pouring like an endless rain
    the executioner jumps on the puddles with abandon
    until the blood of an innocent stained his hands

    Humanity is indeed lost….where do we go from here?

    1. You are right – the government officials do not really get punished for their criminal offences. Already, the spin doctors of the current President already weave stories to distance the President from the public outcry. Ah, politics and all.

    1. Thanks, Noel. Ah, kung babangon nga lang ba ang mga patay para magsalita. Pero, sa katigasan ng ulo ng ibang tao sa Pilipinas, makinig naman kaya sila?

      1. sometimes nniniwala na tuloy akong we need violent change. not an uprising, but fundamental, from-the-ground-up change. social reform and democratic institutions have been twisted and perverted by the very persons who enjoy our democratic freedoms the most. 😦

      2. That means going back in time, start anew. We can start with a good educational foundation that focuses on responsibilities towards others and country, hardwork over luck and quickfixes, moral triumphs over material success which is not bad by itself and which is worthwhile as a result of honest work, beauty of a family. Shikes, I am such a conservative in so many ways, people might label me crazy. 😝😱

    1. 13,400 too much. And the number only includes those killed by policemen in the guise of war on drugs. All other killings due to other crimes will make the numbers so much higher.

      1. Knowing my mother country, I think poverty has a lot to do with it. There is also the sense of helplessness about the crimes committed everyday so much so that killing the alleged criminal seems like a good solution as it gives the impresion that the aithorities are able to do something. Human foilies like anger and revenge play a part, too, along with a lack of imagination and patience for other solutions to work long term. Just a few of the reasons I can think of.

  3. I talked to a lot of people in Tondo recently. Most supported Duterte’s drug war. Many said they felt safer. Several had had a family member killed by an addict. That’s not to say I agree with the shootings- I most certainly do not- just reporting what I heard.

    1. Yeah. I am aware that millions of Filipinos – especially those victimized by drug addicts – favor the actions and directives of the President regarding the war on drugs. I am most likely wo be branded a yellowtard (an oppositionist) if I post my views in any of the forums back home and I will be lynched in a manner of speaking. My own family members will not agree with me. The situation in the Philippines is saddening and scary. I worry for the children who are growing up in this kind of political, social, and moral climate. What kind of consciences will the children have?

      1. I agree with your last 3 sentences, most certainly. I guess when you are poor you live in the ‘now.’ And some feel safer ‘now.’ Scary and saddening as you say….

    1. Thanks, Dee. It is a tragedy in many ways – crime not addressed, and the ‘sanctioned’ killing making new criminals of the policemen, and people becoming desensitized to the horrors of killing another person.

  4. I like the power in the first verse because surely the voices of the dead must eventually be heard above the noxious lies. This is not an isolated case as the same scene is being played out all over the world in many countries and cities.

    1. It is the sad thing, right? Lack of respect for other people, and for their lives, seem to be common place and people are less and less scandalized by it.

      1. Yes, it is a very sad thing, Imelda…lack of respect and compassion for others lives, views and ideas and so true being less scandalized by it. Not good…

    1. Thanks, Jamie. Unfortunately, this still goes on in the Philippines. The sadder thing is, people, even high ranking officials, are making “killings’ a joke, even in political rallies.

      1. I know. Horrifying. I pray for your safety and peace. My cousin just came back to the States from teaching at University in the Philippines, a country of beautiful people where a few have to ruin things for everyone else. Sad.

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