Monday, March 21, 2011

From A Distant Shore

( The prophecy )

White snow, Shinto bells
prompt a chill to fall
as they warn and weep.
Stones will shift
and waters will heap

waves of salt, wide sorrow
while strangers mourn, miles off
safe in their hills, tonight
tomorrow and beyond tomorrow.

( Coming of The Yūrei)

your coastal gardens
own rock and cypress
but spare acreage
for the green bamboo.

Sprays of sunlight
diverge through the trees
while close behind,
a woman glides
concealing her form
in a long shroud of hair.

Not mortal
but mere shadow
she has been cast
by The Archipelago

Mother who once
chose to corset her soul
in stone and timber
rather than bone
and sinew

as she fell from the sky
into small islands.

The wind at hand
to give her breath
and weave fate
on a loom of climatic strings.

Hot, cold, dry wet,
wings, seed and scent
have all caused
diverse blends, decades
never the same. And now

your coastal gardens house
a dire figment of these --

she is prayer
she is need
she is grief

as you watch
with an eardrum catching
the rush of a morning sea.
"Yūrei" is the Japanese concept of a ghost. The female apparition usually appears wearing a white kimono with her black hair loose and wind-swept. Most often, she has died in a sudden or violent manner without proper burial rites; or she is still (after death) influenced by powerful emotions that keep her earthbound until the conflict is resolved.

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