Thursday, March 17, 2011

Dear Japan, I paint you a cherry blossom tree

I am the Earth

I am warm, moist soil
I am a single supple stalk
I draw my life
all the way up into corollas of wild berries on the roadside 

I am amazed at
a breast of water welling
to flow into the inlet of a muddy rice paddy
I am amazed at
myself being
hot steam blowing fire and sulfur up
from the bottom of the great ocean, deep indigo.
I am amazed at
the crimson blood flow
covering the earth’s surface in human shape;
I am amazed that it swells as the tides ebb and flow, and
gushes out monthly under distant invisible gravity.

A person’s love, a person’s temperament, is
as fragile as a mushroom in its pitiable shape
as helpless as seeking shelter from rain under a shepherd’s purse,
yet I am amazed at myself being a shroud that finally envelops him
at a time when one man is despondent.

I luxuriate and I am the same as soil
I share countless failures and immense waste
with tiny maggots in the dirt
and daffodils quivering at the edges of unknown cliffs

I am amazed that I am the pulsating twilight.
I am amazed that I am a dewdrop
which at a set time rises to the blade tip of a rice plant. 
I am the earth.
I live there, and I am the very same earth.

In the four billionth year
I have come to know
the eternal cold moon, my other self, my hetero being,
then, for the first time, I am amazed that I am warm mud.

A poem by Kiyoko Nagase (1906-1995)

I pray for you Japan

Picture courtesy of Flickr


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