To race across mountain jungle canopies, hiding tigers, elephants and other wild beasts. To hear gibbons call with long cool whoops, echoing through valleys of ancient Khmer lives, flowing over pumice water streams, with carved rocks resting beneath. To grasp vine swings suspending clasps of monkeys, sweeping the earth clean and neat below and shadowing long-necked cranes with wings slowly beating the steaming air, plunging over vast cliffs with one’s heart … skipping a beat … onto faraway parched plains extending to infinity, while spirits dance on the fingertips of rice fields heavy with golden harvests.
A falling sun lengthened the afternoon distance, carving through the horizon and silhouetting excited wild children, running and diving, laughing and shouting, swinging on ragged vines. They tumbled into the lakes surrounding the crumbling temples carved from the jungles to reveal red pockmarked stones.
Long-legged lines of girls glided by on too-big bicycles with bells tinkling, gazing their beguiling half-moon smiles, turning their faces in unison. Red dust swirled onto the translucent green foliage, and emerald rice fields containing rows of scything peasants, splaying off through groves of sugar palms, reached ever upwards into the brilliant blue skies. Cool breezes filled with rain-scented air settled towards the approaching dusk, bringing home spirits to rest overnight in the fields of Earth’s ancestors.
Ankor Wat Moat near sunset
Burning down through the distant mountains with a final flash of green winking goodbye to the steaming jungles, the sun disappeared. It briefly blinded Sinarth and his best friend, Borem, perched high on the layers of warm stones forming the walls of the surrounding temples. The sun, ferocious in those final minutes of life, never faltered in its battle to stay above the horizon, a tinge of sadness filling the lands with a sense of lingering foreboding should it waver from its duty. Encroaching darkness, now victorious, descended, swiftly darkening the heavy stones.........................