Art by wataboku

[itadakimasu]

orange stillness in the mountain gates, whispers in tongues

white covering the hillsides and streaming down from the clouds fond papers on the tables

I leave the augury to my hotel room, the self-demolition to find the closest thing to a tongue, to find lips that move like sounds, like wooden doors fit perfect into spaces unwarped by minutes,

forever a hearth, forever a paper-crane traveler

forever seated in unknown commissaries & finding no contact, walks with the mountains

instead

the world birthed this journey in saturday mornings and deep nights/ living art shipped into the mind-trunks & bundled across oceans, rubber boots on a hill, were they mine

or yours and did you take me here

who walks behind us in the snow

I have heard their guardians whisper at the peak so I hid inside the graves

walked again into a shop to offer fingernails and the rose of cheeks into plaques I could not read, though I  hear it is fortune, fortune of fools, of the lost & walking into graveyards full of fallen soldiers, dancing crows in the light rain & silent families on the taut side of the screens, sipping the steam, drinking mist, & I stand

watching their prayers melt

into stone

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