The Power of the Written Word

(A sonnet on Jose Rizal)

He stood with poor, a gallant man of mind,
ardent and brave he spoke a gentle truth
with roar of pride and peace so hard to find
in times of drought he dared to inspire the youth.
The hostile Spaniards came with sword in mouth
to gut and conquer Rizal’s motherland,
yet he resolved to let the ink spill out
in a spirit Spain couldn’t understand.
“Noli Me Tangere”(Touch Me Not) but look
at what oppression breeds – the hope to free
his land from tyranny of thief and crook,
how lovely “The Pearl of the Orient Seas.”
Rizal stood his ground to the very end,
and freedom came through the stroke of his pen.

Matthew J. Lawler is a poet and Chicago native. He has been published in numerous literary journals, including, The Miscreant, Sick Lit Magazine, Caravel, Visual Verse, Unlost, Tuck Magazine, People's Tribune, forthcoming in an anthology( The Best Emerging Poets of Illinois) by Z Publishing. He lives to write and writes to live. You can find him on Facebook at Read other articles by Matthew J..