I haven’t uploaded any new poem onto this weblog since 2009 (click here to read some cool old ones if you have time and space). Maybe ’cause I haven’t come across anything that speaks to my soul of late.

This does. This post is part of Ryoichi Wago’s impromptu prose as one of the survivors of that terrible disaster. He tweeted his poetry right after the Fukushima incident that came without warning. I hope his words will speak to your soul too.

At the earthquake-triggered tsunami hit area in Minamisoma, Fukushima - ABC News

Excerpt from “Shi no Tsubute” (Pebbles of Poetry)…

We all have our own untamable cat of fear.
Once I admit so much in writing, it sends me a postcard.
As if I’m going to read that.
“Humans are cowards”, it says.
“What are you talking about, cowards?”

“You snuggle up when things go wrong, rubbing your chin up against us.”
“And then when it all goes bad, you throw us away with disgust.”
I’m going to rip this up.
Just read it, it says.
There’s no point in reading it.
I rip it up.

Give back the town, give back the village, give back the sea, give back the wind.
The sound of chimes, the sound of cell phones ringing, the sound of mail falling in the letterbox.
Give back the waves, give back the fish, give back love, give back sunlight.
The sound of chimes, the sound of cell phones ringing, the sound of mail falling in the letterbox.
Give back toasting, give back grandmother, give back pride, give back Fukushima.
The sound of chimes, the sound of cell phones ringing, the sound of mail falling in the letterbox.

If you have a dream, don’t give up on it.
Don’t you give up on it!
Don’t you give up on me!
You shouldn’t give up on yourself.
You mustn’t give up on life.
You must not, for us, the so many of us, who had to grudgingly give in to death.

Japanese medical personnel check a child for radiation exposure in Fukushima - Guardian UK

Sourced from Junichi Konuma’s article “Poetry for Japan, and for Now” on the Research SEA network and Wago’s words translated into English.