Saturday, December 6, 2008

The Lazy Traveler -06/11/2008

"Here's to the death of the lazy traveler!"
-Shannon Ford

I saw the death of a lazy traveler,
Falling off a bus roof-top,
Into the frays of Nepalese hotel touts,
He scattered them like disturbed dust,
Blown off the maps,
He landed in fields of mustard yellow flowers,
Thudded on the dirt,
A sound made like how rhinoceros footfalls should thump.

…But don’t.

We buried the lazy traveler right there,
Behind the Banana plants and jungle vines,
Dressed in his dark sunglasses,
Inside a free Tibet t-shirt,
Two sizes too big for an Israeli kid to wear,
His was the air conditioned,
Recommended set breakfast,
Seat feet rest, and all the rest.

The Lazy traveler fell to his death,
No handle on it,
And couldn’t hang on,
He’d asked for sunscreen on top of this bus,
On top of the world,
As it drove by kilometers of trees,
Painted chalk grey,
The sun was not seen protection enough,
The sun has no wrinkles to laugh from,
And no pity for pink skin.

The lazy traveler died bargaining for his life,
The journey of that lifetime,
Not sold packaged by an agent,
Couldn’t buy his way out of this one,
Not marked up or watered down,
Sanitized for the sane of mind,
Never-minding the tree branches,
He would never need to duck under,
As the bus lumbered on,
Like a train to Jordan.

His final resting place,
Resting between the getting there and away sections,
The easy to follow directions,
Far from beeps of trundling jeeps,
On dusty roads not described,
In resort brochure picture placards,
Far from the hotel lobbies,
Of the hot water showered,
Nails, hair, scrubbed,
Conditioned, condition.

The lazy traveler not a local language speaker,
Attempts dying down his throat,
He chokes on his own words,
Not knowing anyone else’,
On the way up.
On his way down.

Lazy traveler died,
Catching the dis-ease,
Of a comfort zoned out of bounds,
The risks,
Sweat heavy strapped to his back,
Sideways for pear-shaped for god sakes,
Not traded for anything else,
That might kill him,
Slowly, un-really.

Instead dying amongst the unruly,
An observer,
Roof surfing,
Forgoing those forgone conclusions,
And testing assumptions,
In limits not recognized,
Nor observed.

The observer,
The dead lazy traveler’s inheritance,
To gratify,
For the conceited,
What he needed,
To keep going,
All the while knowing,
That each step is merely the first,
In unending sequences of what comes next,
Life in the faster lanes driver's seat,
The sustained appetite for all you can eat,
Get it while you can,

Got a life stripped down,
The lazy traveler died a quick death,
Buried in a backpack,

Among friends,
As we become, again,


That you only need to dig a little down, to find so much more out there.


I just wrote this 'live' -sitting here wading through a pile of emails that I haven't checked in nearly a week.

Back to India soon. Feeling ready for it, last few days have been incredible.



No comments: