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Five Hundred and Counting

I. Day 562

There is a bird outside my
Window singing of pear trees and
Apple blossoms, I think,
Watching my hand swipe
The sky and spell my name
Through the clouds the child way
To Imagawa. All animals can talk
In their own separate ways, father
Told me. He’s gone now,
Two years, trying to get back home.
But then I have to tell myself that
Even though I don’t see him, it
Doesn’t mean he isn’t real.

II. Day 6698

I asked myself once whether
Eighteen winters means
That I should be able to watch
Man strike man, peeling
Red, like shavings as his voice box
Is cut, but Motoyasu, they say,
One is greater than two.
The curtain rises on
Pulleys and smoke, after man
Is left alone for twelve years with
No rope left to shred. I know
Now that he begins to color
The waning smog, walk the
Lines he has traced into paint.
Befriend the enemy.

III. Day 13,266

It is because smoke and macaroons
Don’t mix anymore, you slept in your little
House burning rice cakes, your yellow smile
Pacifying flies on a wall, and my reflection
Watched you smolder the pans. When the
Sun sets like a scared apple and I wake up
When the morning ends, will you wait, even
Though you asked with your cheeks full
And shoved blankets into my back window
Saying it’s the boys you feed white tea and
Chicken jerky that are the ones who end up
Being on the radio one day, and I look at
Your parched face like I am happy. Saying
It matters, that your blue-belled life could
Divulge this chattering tune and scrape my
Name into the door. I saw your smoke
And gave it air; do you know I feel
Like glass inside.