New Year's Eve: Thailand

by John Stone

We are sequestered next door to the ancient Buddhist temple; a grizzled old structure thriving with orange-draped holy men, living and praying together. In their proximity, a certain reverence comes upon our crazy little blues band, and this holiday in a foreign land is expected to be subdued if not non-existent. It never occurred to us that the monks would get roaring drunk; banging on any convenient metal object, and creating a general anarchy until dawn. We cower on the balcony, bewildered by a chaos normally taken for granted on any Saturday night. At one point, two monks in their traditional robes engage in a heated argument on the street outside our quarters. It's a sight we Westerners never thought could occur: the Middle Way took a hard left turn.


John Stone is fascinated by small, shiny objects in the form of contemporary Japanese short form poetry. He can be found lurking in the pages of Simply Haiku and Contemporary Haibun.