Fat Brits in football shirts, or skinny old men with

shoulder-belted knapsacks and mini-laptop bags,

but mostly wide-shouldered bloaters here, on what

could be another Gary Glitter's street, for all

the furtive faces sliming past

and pretty faces, wanting money and one old lady

on a blanket, aged outside beyond this economy this

Thailand's Bangkok is imbued with supine ways, hand-

-steepled bows and automatic, servile smiles, this country's

people tell me theirs is a culture allergic to conflict,

its corporate managers swerving through hoops

to reprimand gently, obliquely excoriate so skilfully

their underlings realise they wronged without feeling punished

so keeping intact self respect for them to continue

as king of a shrinking dominion of worth

to their manager's world

where,

uncontradictorily,

the world's fiercest male fighters kick jaws with an accuracy

that puts fat Brits in football shirts to shame,

while they lie to their women at home, here on Gary Glitter

street, where beggar ladies creep behind bushes

to piss, and Brits on the pull become kings with their cash

and their cocks.

There are ageing Brits who seem to live here, too,

trapped, their faces say,

by what must have felt once was their escape

to here,

these are the men beside older women on Gary Glitter street,

maybe wives now,

fat Brits in polo shirts returned to watch the skirts

and smiles that were their destination out of lives

in England long ago, with "I wanna do what I wanna do"

echoing their erections' rudder steering them here

to a dream that they stayed in, now watching their past

lives return as tourists on a fuck-hunt,

this time as resident, married to a dry dream,

his oasis in front of him, his wife beside,

he, perceptibly, dead

inside.

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