Saturday, January 28, 2017

Day 28: Song for the Accused

The Supreme Court missed it 
as they sometimes do
great learned men of the race
put a man to death and
misread the law.
T'was April 1974, in 
Pola Mindoro Oriental
Manuel Morales had carnal knowledge 
with his daughter  Maria, 
young lady of 14.
Incestuous rape we call it now --
a plague humanity beset for centuries hence
And it happened repeatedly so
poor child,  Maria, 
I wished he set her free.
But God was silent all those months 
and on December of that year,
born to Maria one evening at 7
a bright baby named Mary,
she was crying and healthy
but Manuel had thoughts 
and poor baby he took and 
buried on the ground
15 feet away from 
where she was born.
Yet, God had eyes who knew
and decreed that no crime though hidden 
would not be found
for one Delfin Dris and the fiery Dr. Alamar
unearthed the remains of little Mary.
Manuel Morales was caught and jailed 
He confessed to the killing
and related his deed.
It was shame he said 
that caused him to do it,
the proof -- his granchild he killed.
He confessed to the police.
He confessed to the court.
He was ready to embrace his fate.
The court sentenced him to death
and the Supreme Court reviewed
if the law was applied.
The Revised Penal Code it said,
the great Court quoted,
Nocturnity would aggravate
the death penalty -- we cannot avoid.
but one J. Abad Santos dissented
How can it aggravate when it was not intended?
Poor baby was born at 7 already in the evening
Nocturnity was not planned but was a given
the punishment should be reduced
to imprisonment for life.
But the Court of sage chose not to hear 
the lone dissenter's voice
perversity must not escape, it said 
and to the death Manuel Morales went.
And now, forty years hence
we examine the mistake
our dearest Court made
J. Abad Santos, God bless him,
was right. In crimes it is so
one is punished for intent
and not for an event 
as common as night. 
Morales is dead, but he could have lived 
to contemplate and suffer for his fault
he might have reformed and lived a pious life
as he had shown when he confessed
He might have been forgiven and 
lived a wondrous life, yet it is
over now and it is done.
an evil deed and big mistake 
forever etched.
So, here I argue against death,
how many more mistakes will we make?
how many more to suffer his fate.
Someday it might be you, your friend, or family.
Pray it never happens to anyone you love --
a hopeless fate 
remorse too late.

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