Poems

Smells of Bangkok

Sewer
Not dull sewer today, either
Permeating sewer
Infested my nostrils as I stepped out the door

Laundry soap
Fresh. Woodzy. Bushezzz.
Alllll the way down the soi
Boom! Khao man gai around the corner

That’s boiled chicken with rice
And it smells even better than it tastes
Cow. Man. Guy.
Funny how words can smell, too

Sometimes better than … whew
Whatever that was
Followed by bus fumes
Now, that’s a smell I know too damn well

Water on fresh grass
The sprinkler goes round and round
Cheering on newness and growth
My morning music does, too

Is that hair perm solution?
It reminds me of mom’s beauty shop
Bananas and fresh bread
The door to MaxValu is open as I pass by

Ladies perfume
Men’s cologne
Cigarette
Entry to skytrain is near

No shrimp paste or Chinese five spice today
The ladies that cook by the escalator take Fridays off
Thank God for Fridays
And no shrimp paste

Will this morning’s commute contain
Freshly-washed hair, garlic breath
Or stinky armpit?

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