On the Road (Khao Sok National Park)

The wild bows over homes and human houses

An embrace, or an entrance

To a foreign place

Rock face tilts

Like a shack on the brink of collapse

Defy the mountains as inverted hills

Defy the road

Defy what’s still


Candy-colored huts and hutches

Patched with rotting wood and old fishing line

Pandemic-ridden, but not yet quite alive

The Village of Death still presides


‘70s students fended kings and cranes

Built invisible fences to keep out the flames

So, the king built a damn

In front of the School of Architecture & Technology

Young men smash mallets into metal rods to grind

Cinderblocks on a highway median


A red light shines between two green arrows

To what extent does intuition guide how we are

How we live

To what extent does experience dictate the way we choose

Or don’t

Who cares?


Ghosts inhabit the space between badlands and goodlands

Only to live rigidly by someone else’s rules

The stick that beats the monarchy’s broken back

Churns the youth to dance

Barefoot, skipping between leach puddles on the jungle floor

Look up to see God through the translucent green

Of bamboo leaves

That snap under the weight of the overgrowth

Like the stick that breaks on brass spines


To what extent

To what extent would you defend the virgin jungle

As long as it’s beautiful

As long as the men with piggy bank brains keep driving

Along your flower-lined lane


Pluck skulls from streams that trickle

One-cent coins into the palms

Of Coca-Cola swindlers

And road-side chicken dinners


Plumes of smoke rise from flaming piles of trash

Ghosts of ancient beasts linger in the thick blue haze

They watch


Not of being forgotten

But of us forgetting

The girl is a Starseed

They say

Like many of the spirit-seekers who went extinct

She doesn’t know how to pray


But it’s ok

No matter how violent a life

The end is always a quiet way


An admirable duty

To serve the spinning top

Known only by a girl’s finger

That strokes a fern

And everything stops


Until a logging truck that transports dead trees

Passes by

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