Poetry from Thailand

Original poetry written in and about rural Thailand.

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Location: Chong Khae, Nakhonsawan, Thailand

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Weather is more than a metaphor for life.

People who try to forecast rain, snow,
fog and sunshine with barometers, data
from ocean buoys, thermometers, and
now satellites  are at a loss to explain
how my step-grandfather Napoleon who
smoked Old Golds and loved to watch Texas
wrestling (the ring had barbed wire and not
ropes) on my grandmother’s black and
white TV could forecast the weather.
Although he had been in America
most of his life, he still had problems with
English.  He addressed my older sister
with “bright eyes cut-cut.”  Cut-cut was his
name for baby chicks, I think.  Still, when
asked about the weather tomorrow, he
always took our question seriously and
looking away from his match in a time
before instant replay, he would flex his
left elbow and perhaps lift his left leg
for a twitch in his knee.  Then he would
report “no rain, but storm coming soon.”
I believed him at five, didn’t believe him 
for years and years, but now at seventy
I believe him with all my heart again.

FG   7/19/2015

Robert Frost:  All metaphors fail at some point.  The poet’s job is not to comment, but be pleased.

Napoleon Guimond and my Nana lived on the second floor on Spring Street before my father built my sister and me bedrooms off the breezeway.  For a season or so we shared a bedroom off the TV room in my Nana’s world.