Poetry from Thailand

Original poetry written in and about rural Thailand.

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Location: Chong Khae, Nakhonsawan, Thailand

Sunday, May 29, 2011

A Poem For TangKhwa (Cucumber)

By ten pm the tropical rains
have wrung themselves out
in a thousand torrents off
awnings, tarpaulins and the
plastic sheeting of the night
market up and down Grand,
and the street has become a
pixilated profusion of color
with choke points of wheels,
feet, and cars that only an
Impressionist could capture.

At the center of this riot and
swirl comes little Cucumber.
Already as big as a small car,
she is a blot of even, dark gray
happily following her white
T-shirted young mahout.

At eye level, her face fills up
my passenger-side window,
and when her baby trunk ropes
in through a crack at the top
her face has a happy circus laugh.

Outside, I scratch her paper mache
feeling head that she rocks as if trying
to turn a locked door knob.

If elephants never forget it is
not because they have photographic
memories but that they record
the world with a painter’s eye.

Her head now fills the canvas
edge to edge and one yellow
black-lashed, shutter less eye
is dead center. “God’s speed,”
it says, “Remember me, remember me.”

All rights reserved by the author Forrest Greenwood, father of Leanna.

May 29, 2011