1. Nogareru is the Japanese word for escape, taking refuge in a hut.
2. Japanese words can have many meanings that don’t necessarily relate to each other. For example, according to context Soredake can mean:
That much is known of this country.
If you start now, you will be back sooner.
His parents love him even more because he is lame.
So much, that is all for today.
Will do anything but that.
That was all the money I had.
3. During the days we wandered around the Peace Park, at night we ate and watched baseball at the esteemed Uncle’s home in Hiroshima while drinking too much beer.
The poet likes beer
Incense and factory smells
Fill the noisy air
On Hiroshima mountain.
My camera breaks.
The watermills steady turns
Carp become dragons
Basho cheats my breaking heart.
4. Later in Kyoto, visiting shrines during the day and sushi bars at night.
So, it takes many
bottles of beer and sake
to make one Haiku.
I don’t understand a word.
Basho fills my heart
Sake makes my pen run free
A Haiku homerun.
Eyes open- where is my love?
5. While installing in Tokyo, get a call that my father went into a coma. Brother takes charge. I can’t leave. Rest of trip haunted by this.
Brooklyn Candy store,
Mother cleaning floors, toilets
Gangsters in movies
Hardball, jazz sax, mandolin
Enabler of modern dance
Protector from IRS.
6. Final Notes
It rained harder and harder, at the last moment my tongue failed me. She was full of sarcasm and made a cutting remark, said something disagreeable like, “I will give you a flea in your ear.” My face turned a quiet color. Her words still ring in my ear, with the cigarette tucked behind it, like a cry, a call, a chirping, cawing, mooing, barking, and the whining sounds of coyote in the mountain forest above the house where I nogareru.
7. Technical Note:
Not everything has to make sense.