skip past  navigation

Tom's Poetry

Christmas Haiku

The Golden Padauk

from Padauk Shwe War by U Kyawt, translated by Htet Htet Aung and Tom Brinck

The Padauk is a fragrant yellow flower that blooms once a year, around the Burmese New Year, in the hottest, driest month when other plants struggle. It decorates buildings, is worn for its beauty, and is given in offerings to Buddha.

In April, astonishing beauty!
Emerald buds & golden clusters.

no other flower could contend.
At the entrance of Nandamu Glass Cave,
where the flower of angels blooms,
an enlightened monk, cooling his sweat,
lingers--tranquil, serene.

In a year, simply this one month.
In this month, just one day.
Rare & precious, like the coming of a buddha,
humble blossoms, in the heart of tropical forests

Among thick sprays and mists,
the fragrance heralds the New Year.
Golden petals emerge, diminutive.
The water festival of summer arrives.
Supremely majestic, brilliantly golden....

Along the entire street, a breathtaking scent.
Spectacular! Nothing could be more radiant!
Padauk: the King.


Another poem translated from Burmese: Gazed Upon, This Beauty Intensifies

PDF File

Return to List of Poems

(C) 8/1/02 Tom Brinck