Naga coil their way
Down the temple arches
Ornate and incomplete
Already exquisite

The many-headed serpents
Protect the temple
Protect its people
Protect Buddha and Buddhism

But it is the craftsmanship
At which I marvel
An art long lost in the West
To efficiency and profit

Two qualities which
When taken to extreme
Protect little
Of value

Wat Arun
Bangkok, Thailand

Taken during travels, 1995