Journey: An Autobiography in Verse by Mila D. Aguilar (Poetry Book)

Journey: An Autobiography in Verse (1964-1995) is a poetry collection by Filipino author and poet Mila D. Aguilar. It was published by the University of the Philippines Press and the Creative Writing Center on March 15, 1996. The book contains an Introduction by National Artist for Literature Francisco Arcellana, Sr. The Introduction was written in verse form and so was the Preface by the author.

The blurb from the book's back cover:

"This book is not only an autobiography in verse; it is the history of a society in radical transition. Mila D. Aguilar, without realizing it at the time she was writing her poetry, has chronicled the most significant turn of events in Philippine society in the last half of the twentieth century, as it affected a Filipino woman of the petty bourgeoisie, in her prime.

Mila D. Aguilar was born in 1949, a baby boomer strongly influenced by her father, who won the Ramon Magsaysay Award for his pioneering work on the community school.

In the late 60s, when stirrings of the world revolutionary youth movement started, she was in college at the University of the Philippines, hotbed of dissent. When activism broke out in 1970, she was a young teacher and journalist, assigned to cover the youth front. When martial law was imposed in 1972, she had already gone underground.

She saw it all. In 1983, her revolutionary party's response to the Ninoy Aquino assassination convinced her that it was time to leave her beloved movement. Arrested and imprisoned in 1984, she was released in the midst of the jubilation over the EDSA Revolt in February, 1986.

What became of her after that? Her poems will tell you."

Journey: An Autobiography in Verse by Mila D. Aguilar


"The poems in this collection constitute a journey launched early in my teens in quest of the meaning of life. It was a journey that necessitated - without, of course, my knowing so at the start - the discovery of three major actors in my life: Self, Society, and Maker. It took me more than thirty years to unravel the correlation between the three, and even now I suppose I should be wary to say that I already have.

Yet the feeling grows on me everyday that I have. As I review these chronologically arranged poems, I begin to see a pattern of thought and feeling that has followed my trail through the years, wherever I have been buffeted. It is aa consistent, persistent pattern outside of my control that has inexorably spiralled from my finite Self to an expansive Society, and from there to an immeasurable, awesome God.

I present these poems to the public with trepidation and not a little sadness, for going through them makes me feel that I am at the end of my rope: I have said all I can about life on earth - that is, as far as my limitations can carry me - and now all I have left to discover is life in heaven.

I guess I will continue to exist on this planet only if something remains to be done."