September 2021

Back to Issue 10


By John Hicks


                                             Rainy Season


Monsoon season slips in with us, 

these first days of quiet rain.  

Renewal soft uplifted faces, 

silken washing of hot season 

from tamarind, mango, coconut palm. 


Here, slicked to my garden gate 

a Japanese maple leaf 

dark branches bent 

beneath their rising weight. 


Escaped from D.C.’s pewter gray,

and shiny streets of snow and ice, 

we’ve come to Bangkok, where sunset


this time of year, sets silver crowns 

on thunderstorms astride the horizon.  

They hurry moisture from the Gulf—

like tenant farmers late with rent.  

This long-expected cure for heat 

will soon become rice planting season.  


A letter on my desk sits unopened.  

I know what it says.  Reassignment.  

I expect the next will tell me where.


               While we wait, the Chao Phraya 

               overfills the city.  Along our lane, 

               the children chase golden carp

               overflowed from our pond.  And

               in our bedroom, the young ching-chok, 

               survived hot season on mosquitos, 

               slips around the window screen 

               to grow among the flowers.