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I am writing poems adapting Japanese tsunami survivors’ stories into the first narrative. What I can do as Japanese, I want to tell their amazing stories to English speaking countries. The poem is fictional based on a real event.


Buddhist monks lit
the temples aflame
after the earthquake, my father tells me.

The monks scattered
straw and ran with the torchlight.

On the hill, burning
temples and scriptures; ashes
flared in the moonlight. People

hurriedly climbed up the stone
stairs with bamboo buckets
.....and.....heard the tsunami…

The early apricot blossoms

spread in the evening sky. I push
my father’s wheelchair under the trees.

Leave me if it happens, he said.

I pick up a marble
.....and throw it at the tree. Yellowish-
orange petals fall to the ground.

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