Honda 125

Smells of cilantro, basil, grilling chicken. Weaving flow of motorbikes, toddlers in their parents laps, leaning on the handlebars, faces forward, tiny drivers. No wonder the driving is so skillful, calm, and natural; Thais have been used to it almost from birth. There are many scooters, a scattering of old Vespas, etc., but the Honda 125cc is most common and is, for me, emblematic of Thailand. Running open to every weather, often attached to a wheeled iron side cart delivering anything that will fit or can be tied on, carrying families of two, three, even four, they are practical and egalitarian. One might be shinier than another, but on the road, side by side, they are like horses from the same herd.

evening prayer

River Ping

muddy, moving slowly
by the Governor’s Mansion,
I’ll be leaving soon
in the same direction
on this path
along a grassy bank,
but first:
a yak horn ring,
traveled around the world,
must be returned
to the Himalayas—
a prayer hurled
for the giver,
for love joining
and flowing—almond arc
dropping into light red brown,
tiny splash,
spinning & settling

An Oughtred Boat

the beauty of these curves—
bursting, brooding, enigmatic,
promising, smiling even
in the waves, the waves
bearing this insouciance lightly,
as though holding a baby
or an egg or hope itself—
made by hand,
to carry your soul
across the bay

Inge in Chiang Mai