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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & General Editor
Volume 9, Number 3, September 2015

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Sonam Chhoki
Thimpu, Bhutan


No words left . . .

Today is the 7th anniversary of father’s death. The dawn sky is green-black with jagged lightening. The storm abates but the sky is still hazy with remnants of the turbulence.

Father's avocado tree looms in the courtyard of the ancestral house. Its black trunk forks into a web of dark branches. Pale sunlight drizzles through the glossy green leaves.

Sixteen years ago he planted six avocado seeds. This is the sole tree that has survived. Bulbuls bathing in the terracotta pots, where he planted the seeds, put paid to most of the other seedlings. This year for the first time, his avocado tree has burst into white flowers in spring. My uncle says this points to a good harvest of fruits in late summer. How father would have smiled to see this!

Ever since he died, I have kept his medicine box in my room: tinctures of cactus and crataegus, which he used for his heart ailment. Today, I pour the tinctures at the base of his blossoming avocado tree.

a bush lark’s cry . . .
the equinox sun fills
the village well

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