Paul Archer - photo Paul Archer - poet, translator



Description Of A Day

I finish the brush and ink sketch.
Waiting for it to dry, I stand back and look
At the rock curtain on Mt Hotaka as seen from Kamikochi,
The pyramid of Myojin Peak blurred in ink.
A work of art obliterates time and space.
A damp fog is driven from the heavens into my face.
There's no trace of a conditioned response in my mind.
Dry parchment paper is suddenly caught by the wind
And crashes onto the wooden floor of this haunted house.
I roll the paper up and try to make a tight bundle,
Sheer anguish wakens in my heart,
Sheer grief returns to my body.
It's already six years since Chieko went mad,
The ordeals I've lived through have made my hair go grey.
I pause and stare at the newspapers used for wrapping,
Among them is a photograph -
A row of silent field cannon facing the towering peak of Mt Rozan.

The Chieko
by Kotaro

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