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Saturday, July 3, 2010

FORK IN THE ROAD

For Writers Island prompt #10 2010


ISAN MARKET DAY


















Twenty five miles of rice fields unfold
From fork to first traffic light
City limit, better watch your speed
Traffic cops are everywhere
Population, just sixteen thousand
Can’t find a parking space

Stop for roadside barbecued chicken
Stuffed full of lemon grass
One side order of sticky rice
Something wet to wash it down
Kafae ron; Doi Tung will do the trick
Served from a bicycle

Market stall holders open up now
Cuts of freshly-slaughtered beef
Pigs ears, trotters, noses, lips
Chickens, alive till sold
Just three types of chillies on the aisles
Yu-ak, chee far, khee noo

All that shopping sure makes a thirst rage
Cool drinks go down with the sun
Shophouse bar beer Chang on draught
At six point four ABV
Driver knocks back a pint of Red Bull
Won’t nod off at the wheel

Homeward; thirty five minute journey
Full beam to light the way
Step on the gas man, don’t slow down
Traffic cops’ day is done
Rewind twenty five miles of rice fields
Never a traffic light


Translations:
Kafae ron – hot coffee
Doi Tung – ‘Flag Mountain’, in Changrai province where coffee is produced
Yu Ak, Chee Far, Khee Noo – types of chilli