There’s a Free Breakfast at the Heartbreak Hotel on Khaosan




Are you really a PCV

if you’ve never cried on a late-night bus ride?


Never felt tears trace your stress-creased face

falling, speckling, seeding the rice fields


over which you bridge, drive

listening to Leon Bridges lyricize on heavy headphones


heading home to your host family’s house;

the too-far-gone forlorn farang


in a far-flung foreign fairy tale of durian and two weeks too late

birthday mail once more fleeing from the City of Angels?


Do you think I’m being foolish if I don’t rush in?


Do you ever wake wearily on that well-worn walking-street

wallet in pocket but loose baht pick-pocketed, long gone?


Ever feel these salad days are a lackadaisical daze of

hazy emotions: mad sad maybe a tad crazy


so you put pencil to paper, pen poetic, set the page ablaze

hands hastily diarizing the phrases your brain relays


creatively unfazed despite your lazy morning-after gaze, sight obscured

by rays of early sunlight heating the creeks on your cheeks through


the yellow-green taxi’s window, articulating so to explore that obfuscating

frustrating though beautiful amazing maize maze of feelings that sways, winds


litters your mind with right turns and wrong ways?

Yeah — me neither.


Have you ever been in the soot-black bean bags back by the bar

fists balled to a torrent of hot tears wondering


why the fuck

you’re still here still feeling this way that you are?


Ever laid in Lumphini Park for a sundress caress, a current of colored cotton

surging to touch glowing, flowing across hips, curves but


soon after eyes close to meet lips to lips you’re back

seated near the rear of the bus, tear streaked


wishing you had just bought the hostel bed

instead of the palace hotel room?


I too hope we can meet again.

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