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Manoa 13.1 (2001) 164
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Half a Century
For years and years you have been a skull.
"We had to break the piles of frozen bodies
hardened like dead trees,
and carry them to the frozen sea
and dump them quickly,"
the man who has returned from Siberia is saying.
It's so strange
that on a hot summer night
in the slight sound of the air conditioner
the man is there on the TV screen
On the yonder side of the flow of half-a-century's time,
a man who expired in the frozen land
had an artificial eye in his skull,
fiercely staring at the sky, he says.
Though a skull,
he was able to come back to his wife,
thanks to his artificial right eye.
Translation by Koriyama Naoshi
Sone Yoshi lives in Maebashi, Japan, and has published four books of poems. The poem in this issue is from her latest book, Falling Flower Petals.