In 1978, he wrote the script for Insiang, the first Filipino film to be showcased at the Cannes Film Festival. He is the author of several critically acclaimed books - Hagkis ng Talahib (1971), Pagsalubong sa Habagat (1986 National Book Award for Poetry), and Pingkian at Apat Pang Aklat ng Tunggalian (1997 National Book Award for Poetry).
A Palanca awardee 10 times over, he has also won the grand prize for the Epic Narrative in the Cultural Center of the Philippines Literary Competition, and was hailed Makata ng Taon by the Surian ng Wikang Pambansa. He also received the Gawad Manuel L. Quezon and Pambansang Alagad ni Balagtas.
His other accomplishments include the translation of the literary works of Gabriel García Márquez, Dylan Thomas, Octavio Paz, Rainer Maria Rilke, Arthur Conan Doyle, Leopold Senghor, Salvatore Quasimodo, Usman Awang, and Rabindranath Tagore. He also translated Renato Constantino's A Past Revisited (Ang Bagong Lumipas) in 1997 and served as editor-in-chief of Diyaryo Filipino and Kabayan broadsheets and Pilosopong Tasyo magazine.
Pingkian at Apat Pang Aklat ng Tunggalian
Recipient of major awards for his poetry and prose, the author presents his third collection of poems. Antonio, says a critic, is the most persuasive voice in contemporary Tagalog poetry, a poet who speaks for the oppressed, whether peasant or worker, without any touch of affectation.
Antonio's Pingkian at Apat Pang Aklat ng Tunggalian was 1997 National Book Award for Poetry and 1998 Gintong Aklat Awardee for Literature.