Poetry / June 2017 (Issue 36: Writing Japan)

After Reading Gozo Yoshimasu

by Joshua Marie Wilkinson

There was a single room
in which to lie down.
It could be seen through
the fogged up window if you
pushed back the prickly shrubs
which I did with the length of my arm.

We were shown the way
along the gutter, though
it was not raining perhaps
it had been. Blossoms
in the muddy tracks
and a candy wrapper
with the open face
of a child crying in glee

Another room for breathers
whose doors appeared to be locked.
I looked up for access to the roof,
the skylight within, etcetera.

We were instructed
to wait with the motion of a hand,
upturned. In fact, our man did not smile.
I had emptied my pockets long ago.
I had been doing what was asked.

Just wait here
a moment. You should
wait here. There's nothing
to see exactly.

When you notice
your blinking. The respiration
of your lungs. A melody caught
in your ear.

No. Do not raise your voice.

When you notice these things
you've been here long enough
and now may call it living
or describe it as you like.
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ISSN 1999-5032
All poems, stories and other contributions copyright to their respective authors unless otherwise noted.