At the end of daybreak, you awoke from a nightmare: an
anadromous fish died by desiccation. What makes a man
feel like a man? You shaped hot-boiled eggs into apples so
well in Yamaguchi and in Ewa. Numbers in isolation are
subservient. Three will never equal 31. You reversed
a superstition about shrimp. White flags become great banners.
de-sorou 225 do
jissaika 702 jisshitsu
ma-shikaku 1187 massetsu
shoshin 1764 sho-sho
yoko-donari 2186 yokou
Threads that Run Crosswise
In the war, he had no chance of fighting. Ten fingers
year after year. She looked at the profile of her son. The
carrot sprouts have not come out evenly. His silence
within bounds. Just under the tower, he teaches without
system. Letters written sideways. Influence from a house
Give me sugar in the alley. This hollow lacks fruit.
busogu 129 butai
hen-yo 481 heta
kaiketsu 769 kaiko
sho-sho 1755 shosui
yokuya 2190 yomei
Love Song for Amaterasu
Order of arrival? He saw fish hung on poles. What
can the sea contain?
He dove at you and will go part of the way with you.
Written sentence and the paper sliding door. His
passage. And you—beneath not beyond.
All mention of ocean done. Air current. Not the
luminous form. In the dark. Push. Not the pull
akubun 23 akuma
hissho 512 hito
kyu-kakudo 1154 kyukon
sampei 1567 san
tochi 1985 tochu-gesha
December 7, 1941
At the end of daybreak, your fertility was
announced to the world
in full. You ran through thick rain without
wetting the bachelor dust.
And for days, a kompa* held you: the gray
carp swam vigorously
in the rock pond. A week later, you convulsed
on the guest cot;
white sheets stained beneath you. Crave and
you shall receive—
raw liver without the onions.
*Kompa is the Japanese word for a friendship or partnership. Kompa is also used in the Pidgin English of Hawai’i