After Nang Nark, a Thai folktale

Nai Mark returns to Phra Khanong forty years after he left home screaming. His neighbors are gone. The canal has dried to dust. The house he shared with Nang Nark is boarded up and listing to one side. The town is as much a ghost as his wife.

He removes the nails and pulls the boards away. He sets his hand in the jamb, where he used to kiss Nang Nark after work each day. He steps inside and she appears, beautiful as the sliver of light between life and death.

“I’m home,” Nai Mark says. “Sorry it took so long.”


I swallowed it whole and a hedge burst from my breast, brambles grown thorny around my heart.

Half Moon Bay

He said once: the moon is a man who will marry you someday. At the bay, my wife calls to me in a language he never knew. Her mouth around my name: the moon.