Vengeance Is not Ours, It’s God’s

Alms, alms, alms. Spare me a piece of bread. Spare me your mercy.  I am a child so young, so thin, and so ragged.Why are you staring at me?  With my eyes I cannot see but I know that you are all staring at me. Why are you whispering to one another? Why? Do you know my mother? Do you know my father? Did you know me five years ago?

Yes, five years of bitterness have passed. I can still remember the vast happiness mother and I shared with each other. We were very happy indeed.

Suddenly, five loud knocks were heard on the door and a deep silence ensued. Did the cruel Nippon’s discover our peaceful home? Mother ran to Father’s side pleading. “Please, Luis, hide in the cellar, there in the cellar where they cannot find you,” I pulled my father’s arm but he did not move. It seemed as though his feet were glued to the floor.

Then suddenly, we heard a voice call, “Consuelo. . . . Oscar. . . . Consuelo. . . . Oscar. . . . Consuelo. . . . Oscar. . . .” we ran towards the direction of the voice, but it was too late. We saw father hanging on a tree. . . . dead. Oh, it was terrible. He had been badly beaten before he died. . . . and I cried vengeance, vengeance, vengeance!

Suddenly, bombs started falling; airplanes were roaring over <my> head, canyons were firing from <over my head> everywhere. “Boom, boom, boom, boom!” Mother was hit. Her legs were shattered into pieces. I took her gently in my arms and cried, “I’ll have vengeance, vengeance!” “No, Oscar. Vengeance, it’s God’s,” said mother.

But I cried out vengeance. “No, Oscar. Vengeance is not ours, it’s God’s” these were the words from my mother before she died. That was five years ago, five years. . . .Alms, alms, alms. Spare me a piece of bread. Spare me your mercy. I am a child so young, so thin, and so ragged.Vengeance is not ours, it’s God’s.

This is the first, and maybe the last declamation piece I’ve learned from my mom. Google had not reached us yet when I was seven so I was not able to recite the full version (Click here) of this piece during our school program. Now I can’t help admiring my mom  for remembering much of her high school day’s declamation piece. She patiently taught me the meaning of each sentence I was about to utter before a crowd. Now it makes me think, did my mom wish I was a boy? Hehehe.. (Spelled out: Oscar is the declaimer’s name.)