John Updike, Dr, Seuss, Mark Twain,E.B White, Alice Munro,John Steinbeck,John Irving,Stephen King, Agatha Chistie,Leo Tolstoy, Ernest Hemingway, Roald Dahl, T.E Lawrence, Nick Joaquim, NVN Gonzalez, Greg Brillantes, Renato Constantino, and Luning Bonifacio Ira.

They are just names,some familiar and unfamiliar names.All the individuals I mentioned have all one thing in common. They are all Writers.

A writer, types all day or night just to meet a deadline.

A writer burns the midnight candlelight. Usually picks up his pen, like a magician he plays and winds and wields  his wand uses his thoughts and writing style that Illuminates  readers minds. Writers paint’s pictures using words, sentences, phrases and paragraphs that would spark  imagination.Perhaps open readers to new heights, encourage readers to go beyond their dream. This is the magic and power of the writer. This is the power of Prose and Poetry.

Present Time

The continues infernal cry and barking of young puppy tied up at a post in a local car shop woke me up this stormy and rainy Tuesday morning. Originally I set up my alarm to wake me to grab several copies of the Philippine Daily Inquirer Newspaper. My sister informed me she wrote an article about our Mom.

For the past few weeks, it has been pretty difficult and hard for the family since her passing last July 5. I  admit I am deeply affected by her passing First, my Dad who we lost last April 7 of this year and now my mom.

Personally, I found it really hard to lose a father. But really it is excruciatingly painful to lose both father and mother at the same time. It is really unnerving.  The only consolation we have is that both our parents lived a full wonderful life. Sharing their success and failures; up’s and down in life; Struggles and Successes and above all shared their thoughts, teachings which were imparted to their children.


manila times writer.png

Euphoria finally died down last Sunday in Manila, when Boxer and incumbent  Philippine Senator Manny Pacquiao beat Welterweight Argentinian Matthysee by a  technical knockout on the 7th Round. The boxing event was held in Malaysia. My sister from New York advised me to go out and grab some copies of the Manila Times   

There was an article that came out paying tribute to our mother.

luning manila times

Luning Bonifacio Ira – As A Writer, Editor, and Freelancer

Martial Law was declared by the late Philippine President Ferdinand E. Marcos on September 21,1972. One of the first victims of the Martial Law Era was an American Corporation called Esso. The building was bombed, burned and torn down. My mother was then a Writer and Editor-and-Chief of the Defunct Employee Relation Department (ERD) of Esso.

Esso Employee Relations Department was one of the victims of Martial Law that were dissolved like many others. The Philippine Government under the dictator had set up a new company called the Philippine National Oil Company or PNOC. The new company was headed by Energy Czar Geronimo Velasco.

I remember my grandparent”s praying and crying out speculating what the future held for the young Ira brood. My siblings and I were ambivalent about what was going on. Perhaps as kids, we were too naive and young. My mother smiled coyly, stood up and confidently told our grandparents not to worry. Everything will work out well, and she did taking up the challenge of transforming from a Corporate Life to work as a housewife and freelancer.

The Seventies Decade

Our late Grandparents used to tell our family that our mom, Luning Bonifacio Ira, was shielded from the horrors of World War II. Mom was sheltered and given various types of books that were her constant companion and friends. In the seventies, I recall mommy buying and borrowing different kinds of books. Our single library was filled up with various encyclopedia such as the Book of Knowledge, Britannica. Our old garage too was converted to Mom’s study. Her sacred refuge, where she had continued to invest in different books and various subjects. Our library and mom’s study was filled with different books that range from Filipiniana, Art, Culture, History, You name it we have it.

The younger generation would say. Why bother when you have Google? My answer is , yest it takes time, effort  and research. At least you learn something based on facts. It is really sad to see the younger generation writng their position papers, term papers and Theses based on Google and Wikipedia. But during our time, the Seventies Generation did not have the luxury of  todays Information Technology. Back in the Seventies microcomputers and Information Technonolgy was non-existant and at an infantile stage.

Luning Bonifacio Ira was constantly busy. I recall there was never a moment she was constantly writing. With Writers such as NVM Gonzalez, Gemino Abad, and Sylvia Ventura. Mom took turns writing for ” Exchange” column of the Manila Chronicle Newspaper.

Mommy wrote Book Reviews, Short Stories, and Essays to known publications at that time such as Sunburst, Orientations, Graphic and other publications. Despite her heavy schedule I fondly remember Mommy had always time for each or her children. Occasionally bringing any of her kids to some writing assignments. I for one was invited to join her when Punta Buljuarte in Puerto Galera in Batangas was newly opened.

These are just some of my fondest memories I  of  Mom, Luning Bonifacio Ira. Even after Thirty Years have passed. I was surprised today’s generations have read some of Mom’s books and writing a masterpiece.

Before closing this tribute let me share a piece of her work for your reading pleasure. This comes from Table for Three Please

Halo-Halo from Abe

It’s summer again.


If the first few weeks are any indication, we are in for a hot one. While most people’s thoughts turn toward lazy days at the beach hoping to escape the scorching heat, my thoughts turn toward dessert–the frozen kind. For me, nothing says summer more like a ice-cold, overflowing glass (or bowl) of halo-halo.

While I could try to define the simple poetic elegance of this Pinoy dessert, I think Luning Bonifacio Ira captured it best:

“Served in a the traditional tall fluted glass, it is an edifice, no less, baroque splendor. On a sapping day the soaring sight lifts the spirit and has the power to banish the heat…A separate class altogether is halo-halo especial. It is the humble regular, but knighted by the nobility of Philippine sweets–leche flanand makapuno— surmounted by a scoop of ice cream, topped by a towering mound of shaved ice, sprinkled over with toasted pinipig and sugar.”

– from ‘Halo-Halo’ in The Culinary Culture of the Philippines

Thank you, Mommy, just like my article Teltelestai. It is DONE.

Some Tribute for Luning Bonifacio Ira

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