Chittagong

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Airport to seaport,

escorted by colossal container vessels.

Road, estuary, river carry us city-wards.

All routes lead to Chittagong.

 

Ancient harbor sky-lined by cranes,

crowded by container playgrounds,

lined by black wood and red rusting hulks

high and drying on draining low-tide flats.

 

Road construction stopped

for delicate demolition of a mosque.

Squeeze past yellow trucks piled high with blue drums,

spiked security walls, factories, export zones.

 

Great meeting of highways, crossroads of commerce,

trading, laboring, loading, haggling.

Milling, mingling crowds.

 

Hansom sharp-featured Bengalis,

wide cheek-boned, crinkle eyed hill-people,

farmers, merchants, sailors.

 

Colors and smells of dry fish markets, vegetable stands,

sand piles and red crushed brick building sites;

high-rises and terminals,

trains, trucks, ships, planes.

 

Forty degrees and a humid sea breeze

Chittagong is open for business.

.

 

Chittagong, Bangladesh 2014

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