The first installment of High Chair 12, a special issue on the Maguindanao Massacre, is now available. It features responses by Mesandel Virtusio Arguelles, Richard Bolisay, Mabi David, Marc Gaba, Elmo Gonzaga, Oliver Ortega, and Allan Popa.

We are currently working on the second installment of High Chair 12. We are inviting poets and artists everywhere to respond to the works in the first installment and/or to address the following questions:

1. How could poetry be written/art be made so that it has value to the Maguindanao Massacre?

2. Or, if art is an inadequate response—offering no sufficient answers, effecting no significant change, if not trivializing horror in the service of aesthetic exercise—is no response the only generous response? Should art even be asked for a reply?

We are interested in poems (whether old or new, unpublished or previously published) that offer ways of thinking about terror, horror, and other pertinent ideas/terms. We are interested in essays and reviews that examine the role and state of Philippine poetry and art in the context of the Maguindanao Massacre.

High Chair 12 is a work in progress, with content uploaded by installment, from mid-December to mid-February. The deadlines for submission for possible inclusion in the next three installments of High Chair 12 are December 31, 2009, January 15, 2010, and January 30, 2010.

Email your submissions or queries to (subject heading: High Chair Issue 12).