Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Signs to Santubong -08/07/2011


The last sweatless night behind you
left lying in a luggage locker
what you-doing in Borneo?

bunker windows eying out
your backseat taxi ride
making bumpy pidgin observations

Kuching wet to the taste
it's dug up and hot
you're thirsty
like misunderstood maps
like somewhere passed
this foliage you pass
you're going to get it all
growing photographs
out of your mouth gapes

air conditioners blister
every building side
jungles sprawls reclaim urban ones
vines and concrete competing
in an alternating tortoise and hair
racing crawl
a fight for life
stalemating on the edges

cops wear black
bonsai minaret roadblocks
everywhere has a gate in front of it

everything weathered and chipped
and still being built
covered woven then exposed
everywhere pipe works
and construction

faces made out of cracks on the pavement
south east age-ya
sunlight glare caked in the rubble
colours spilled stain
like off a post-banquet tablecloth

sunset casts a phonetic spell
over the skyline
in three languages worth
of roadsigns
treelines ahead
on motorbikes
in silk suits
that the cab ploughs through
mid-aerial roundabout ramshackle
passing roadside gardens of rust

but this place
is quieter with it's chaos
than some you've seen
the prepaid taxi driver
who speaks only when spoken to
making allowances for invaders
without bullshiting you
with friendly single serve chit chat
the dashboard air con hums
comfortable silence be cool with that

your insect repellent packed
you know to stick to the maps
smell out tourist traps
pay for it all in small notes
keep the photo-fire to a minimum

then relax

you're in Borneo now
the only place
you've been in years
where a poet
wearing a pith helmet

might finally make sense.




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