They were born of the same parents but he was not her brother, not anymore.

He was a renowned monk, an expert in the ancient practice of sak yant, a magic tattoo artist.

The fact that today he had to work on someone that was his sister in a previous life did not matter to him.

She was just one of the hundreds of devotees who came to see him on a daily basis, believing that his skills with the ink would protect them and turn their luck around.

Monks are not allowed to touch females and so he asked…

Photo by Egor Ivlev on Unsplash

I hate that we are called body snatchers when we are actually the good guys.

We patrol the streets of the city, getting to accident scenes before the police or the ambulances, doing our best to get the injured to hospitals on time so they can be saved, or the dead to the morgue so that their family can identify and take possession of their bodies

We are all volunteers, and are not paid much but we do it because it is the right thing to do.

But I have decided to quit my job.

It is not the blood…

It was a clear night and the moon used this opportunity to shine its silver beam down in earnest, the rays streaming into a bedroom where a man sat next to a headless body, reflecting on his good fortune.

Never in his wildest dreams could he have imagined that a simple person like him from a small village would one day marry such a beautiful girl and live out his dream life in the North of Thailand.

He was madly in love with her, and was sure she was with him, proven by her trust in leaving her body in…

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

I’m a master occultist, an artist, a consummate professional.

I can assure you that finding the right woman at the right age who has had a most violent death, so much so that her spirit is vengeful and angry, is a most difficult matter.

And then to spend the night in the cemetery, appeasing and asking permission from its deity to harvest fluids from the dead, pregnant woman, offering gifts of fish, eggs, cigarettes and whiskey is not for the faint hearted and the inexperienced.

For if you make one wrong move, the angry ghost is set free.

But I…

One dark, rainy evening, my friend’s mother led us to a room where she kept her adopted child.

Giving us each a bottle of red syrup water, she asked us to kneel in front of a golden shrine and offer the drink to a lacquered wooden effigy of a boy, his hair in a topknot, dressed in traditional Thai outfit.

The Kuman Thong would protect us, she explained, but we should stay in bed and not interrupt him in case he wanted to play with our toys during the night, or he could get quite upset.

I was seven years…

Listening Series — 9

Photo by Majid Hajiloo on Unsplash

I walked out on to the terrace of our building one cloudy morning, and was greeted by a murder of crows sitting along the rim of our large satellite dish.

“A Murder of Crows”.

Always wanted to use that in a sentence.

The reason I started my writing journey.

They were restless, jumping in place, looking every which way, while many more flew around erratically.

Cawing loudly.

There were no crows when I was small.

Where did they come from?

Maybe because Bangkok has grown too fast, hasn’t showered in a while.

A lot more trash…

Listening Series — 8

Photo by Javier Allegue Barros on Unsplash

It was dusk, the night rising to meet the fading day, their fingertips delicately caressing each other before they parted.

The clouds were thick and low, the ocean was wide and calm and soft music rose in the air, sprinkling magic dust on the worshippers at the white and sandy shrine.

A dreadlocked man had set up his gear on the beach, creating a soundtrack for the night. Two small children played catch, running around him, narrowly missing the dark metal of the mixing equipment and turntable as he swayed, holding one end of a headphone to his ear.


Photo by Jon Sailer on Unsplash

We have a confused rooster in our neighborhood.

Wakes us up at 2 am.

Or maybe he isn’t confused.

Maybe he’s actually a prize fighter celebrating his victory.

Standing in a pool of blood over his opponent, arms raised, flexing, as his owner collects the spoils of the night.

A good night for them.

Not so much for the dead opponent.

Cock fighting is big in this country.

The Animal Welfare Bill allows cock fighting on grounds of it being a part of Thai tradition.

True story, yesterday, a man in India bled to death after his rooster slashed his…

Photo by Elena Mozhvilo on Unsplash

An Asteroid crossed paths with the Earth one celestial day.

“How can you spin and still smile?” It asked, “Don’t you hate being a slave to the forces of gravity and what not. Who are they to think they can push us around for no reason?”

The Earth, chanted, “No reason, no reason..” Continuing its spin and smile.

“It’s all so cruel, the way we are made to be born, break down and vanish, don’t they understand that we need a choice too instead of making us do this purposeless dance?”

“Purposeless dance, purposeless dance…” The Earth sang, shining brighter.

Photo by Mattia Faloretti on Unsplash

Turtle stepped out of a singing stream one day and went up to the meditating Buddha.

“Oh Wise One, I am Turtle and can swim in water and run on land. Yet people mistake me for the slow and plodding tortoise and this makes me angry.”

The Buddha opened his eyes.

“Oh, I see, what you are saying is that I need to open my eyes and see the beauty of Tortoise. And I should open my heart to those who are unaware of our difference.”

The Buddha’s lips curved into a soft smile.

“And I need to be more…

Suthep Srikureja

Husband, Father, Entrepreneur, Writer.

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