A rarity, a rare occurrence—like the case of people with super human strength or un- breakable skin in Marvel Universe. Marvel, another term that defines the fleeting word “phenomenon.”
The characters you will encounter in Dagta Phenomena might actually form a group of defenders from an alternate universe. We have humanoid cats and dogs from Ma-i Entico’s ‘hallelujah, it’s raining —‘ while ‘A Theory on Dragons, Meteorites and Reptilians’ introduc- es Dr. Rawra, a “large Tyrannosaurus Rex donning magnificent red and purple skin and large rectangular glasses made from stone and clear crystals.”
Readers will meet Carlo and Kasey from Leila Maligalig’s ‘Away.’ Teenagers who control their dreams and can go places through this out-of-body-experience. Then, we have Cazandra of ‘Devil’s Tramping Ground’ by Bianca Rabe. She is from year 2045, a year when the Devil holds a Raffle Day on the sixth day of the sixth month of the year.
Paco and Miss Trinidad from Lora Noreen Domingo’s ‘In the Ripe Time,’ though considered regular beings, standout despite their mediocrity. Like the characters with abilities, they both desire for ripeness—another rare occurrence.
One will meet a range of personas in the poems included in this year’s folio. We have a speaker that waxes and wanes, who describes herself as a “smooth candle” that “listens to the whispers/ of the wind/ hoping not to flicker/” from Soleil Cruz’s ‘Desolating.’ Maura Yap’s ‘global warning’ has the ability to reduce its readers into a “sandy decay” as we become one with the persona that “crawls its way out of her dry throat unto the path of cracked earth beneath her feet.” As if on cue, Danielle Castillo’s poems follow suit. Biblical events such as the Creation, the ten plagues and the Passover are treated like phenom- ena. Finally, we have Amber Garma’s poems about spacemen and infamy, displaying her adeptness at word and sound play.
Wika Nadera made the cover. The editors of this year’s Dagta are Ma-I Saffron Germaine Entico and Amber Garma. They created their own phenomenon with this collection. I’d like to believe that this anthology shall defy the rules of short-lived sensations.
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