Up and up, up the mountain alone,
but not, for the prying sun always
tries to reach me though the stooping
Up and up, I drag my legs to the summit.
Ancient yet ever-young, our mighty friend
greets me with snow streaked shoulders,
delighted that I have made the pilgrimage.
Green tea ice cream, tasted and savored in
memory’s mouth, cannot be found.
Effort must be its own reward.
Down I start and down I stop.
Frost flowers, crouching within the craggy
folds of the mountain side like hermits
hoping to evade the sun’s judgment, listen
with me to an explanation which I can only
Down and down, legs dangerously buoyant,
hopping over rocks that would trip me with indifference.
Faster fellows bounce past me, flying far out of sight.
Black Kite/Kamakura, Japan
It is the beginning of the end
as we prepare to return.
A year that I am already forgetting,
the faces, the papers, the poems
and the pain, all fade from memory,
like her voice full of tears…or was
A year of passing, but of passing to
I am no closer, no closer at all.
Fireworks at Tachikawa’s Showa Kinen Park/立川市の昭和記念公園
“Left over right,” is what she said.
“Left over right, or you are dead.”
But, I forgot what I was told
and now my lips are crisp and cold
fearful of the frost
we thrived in summer kilns for
a burnt lavender harvest
slumbers along my slimside
ribs in drowsy dialogue
The Wisteria Illumination at Ashikaga Flower Park/Tochigi Prefecture
Holey sweaters, once whole
10-year-old lipstick, once bold
Make no mistake,
what is theirs will be yours.
Fuzz covered coverlet, once clean
Faded pajamas, once teal
not much longer than life.
Costume jewelry, once bright
Family photographs, once nigh
Make no mistake,
What is yours will be theirs.
an oriental turtle dove/キジバト