Back to the Capital



Back to the Capital

for Sokly


the windows opaque

dust and soot and longing

hideous high rises

the Mighty Mekong, all Four Faces

eleven years ago, I crossed that river

a day of banners, smiling, semi-naked crowds

I despised lukewarm water and half-nakedness

bare bodies are superb

fearless and immortal

the fourteen last corpses at the S-21 were still

half-clothed and bloated

all I had was a lovely swim

a dive innocent and cleansing

the Mighty waters carrying with them

some of their icy homeland

even in the middle of the month of April

then, two years ago, you hanged yourself

in a tiled bathroom

in a new condominium

I thought I did not wish to return to

this capital of returnees

but I am one of you

I seek nothing Russian at the Russian Market

I stroll around the Olympic Stadium

that never hosted the Games

I climb the promised hill

that is nothing but a decent-sized stupa


Petros Isaakidis


Petros Isaakidis is a nomad, a medical epidemiologist, and a writer. He is prolific in scientific writing while frugal in creative writing. He is currently enrolled in the University of Cape Town’s MA in Creative Writing program.


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