July 26, 2022


Ing bie na ning tau— a Kapampangan phrase which simply means "life". I happened to give an intervention to a graduating 4th year college student who was not able to finish the requirements needed to be in one of his courses. As an educator, it is our prime duty to help these students finish their studies and be successful someday.

Ing bie na ning tau—a Kapampangan poem composed by Mr. John Paulo G. Sanchez, a 4th year college student taking up a Bachelor of Science in Hospitality Management at Mabalacat City College. It would be his final examination on the course GEC104, also known as Art Appreciation. It was just a simple message from him stating that he could not take the online final examination because he was at the hospital during that time taking care of a relative because of an illness. 

I told him that in order for him to pass the course, he was just then tasked with composing a poem. I advised him to draw inspiration from his surroundings while in the hospital setting. He was hesitant at first, and even told me that he could only see sick individuals, problematic family members, doctors, nurses, and young and old people. 

I persuaded him to convert the feelings he was experiencing at the hospital into words that might explain his emotions. I told him to do it one at a time and even gave him more than a week to finish the poem. 

Ing bie na ning tau. After a few revisions made by Mr. John Benneth G. Viray (Thank you sir!), a SAS Filipino instructor, the final output of the poem by Mr. Sanchez became enticing and appealing. Permission to use his poem was granted by Mr. Sanchez. 

Ing bie na ning tau. He was very happy to know that his original composition would be posted. He was very happy. Reflecting on the Kapampangan words he used, many emotions have been exemplified.

Life is not simply living. Living means the totality of an individual that accepts misfortunes but will try to stand up and rise. Living means being happy and contented. Living means faith that there is something much stronger than us, that knows our future and may provide fulfillment of our dreams. 

Ing bie na ning tau. A poem by John Paulo G. Sanchez



John Paulo G. Sanchez

BSHM 4E – Mabalacat City College


Ing bie ning tau nung lawan me,

Asne kasaya, malagu ya aske;

Ing bie ning tau nung keka yang lawan,

Makule tutu, mipnung kaligayan.


Dapot potang ing oras dinatang,

King bie atin mu naman kasakitan;

Problemang waring ‘ya na ing kapupusan,

Alang kalutasan! Alang kalutasan!


Potang dinatang na mesabing oras,

Pilit balikdan itang aldo milabas;

Itang aldo mipnu kang saya,

Itang aldong matula at payapa.


Ala nang agawa nung e tumangis kumiyak,

Manyad pakalulu king Dios a matas;

Kasalanang arapat panyawad tawad,

Kasalanan king Dios, at karing kapatad.


Dapot ali mu sa potang magkakasakit,

Maus king Dios, saingsing ampon lumapit;

Iyabe Ya naman king tulang tatamasan,

Ban Na kang antabayanan karing aldo daratang.


Anya kekayu kapara kung tau,

Magsilbi ya sanang aral ining poesya ku;

Mitatak sana king pusu at isip yu,

Layun idake karing kilala yu.


At the end, he wanted to be an inspiration to everyone. It was not a perfect "him" (John Paulo), but through this simple poem he composed, he was inspired to strive and be great again. As I asked permission from him, he gladly stated, "ihhh Solid. Maraming salamat po, daig kepa mibayit ulit maám. tula ko!" (Great! Thank you very much, mam. I felt that I was reborn. I am very happy!)

I knew then that I was able to motivate him; that I have given him hope and opportunities to work out things right for himself. I knew then that I am indeed a teacher—a professional teacher. Kudos!

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