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Two Bikol books off the press

By Kabulig-Bikol, Inc.

Ako, Kalag, Omay by Jaime Jesus U. Borlagdan and Santero kan Santo Entierro by Dennis B. Gonzaga recently rolled off the press and are now available in the Bikol region.

Borlagdan’s volume is a collection of his prose poems, stories, and essays, including works that won the Premyo Tomas Arejola para sa Literaturang Bikolnon and a Komisyon ng Wikang Filipino competition. The province of Albay recognized the author as Outstanding Albayano Artist for Literature in 2015. Fellow Tabaqueño writer Niles Breis praises Borlagdan as having “created a universe of his own, giving us the pleasure of empathy and imagination.”

In his introduction, Philosophy professor Michael Hernandez predicts that Santero “will be a defining moment in Bikol and Philippine poeticizing.” Gonzaga describes his book, the first of a trilogy, as “a personal meditation on loss, nihilism, and death, and the emancipation that ironically comes with these three dark sisters.” The author teaches at the Partido State University where he also serves as Press Director.

Jaime Jesus U. Borlagdan Dennis Gonzaga

The two books, designed by Victor Dennis T. Nierva, are published by LJ Graphics & Literacy Exponent and the Bikol Historical Center for Kabulig-Bikol, Inc. and are thereby products of the literary community’s efforts. Copies may be ordered from the authors through their respective Facebook pages and from Kabulig-Bikol, Inc. Facebook page.

These are the third and fourth publications of Kabulig after Girok: Erotika, partially funded by the V.C. Igarta Foundation for the Arts in New York, and Sa Ikatolong Aldaw by Anthony Diaz, winner of the Kabulig First Book Grant. Kabulig-Bikol transformed itself into a literary resource center during the pandemic and will continue to give workshops and assist Bikol writers in publishing their literary work.


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