after Kotaro Takamura
On the hearth, the gas fire warms
Oolong tea, wind wanes this evening moon.
Outside, the world
Would have us
Regimented, in uniform,
Snapping to attention.
Lost in the world’s maelstrom,
Knowing hearts, once
Artless and free.
You understand. It’s clear
That’s how the world is,
A cruel and callous circle,
Clutching to itself a harsh conceit.
So those true to themselves –
Yesterday, today, or tomorrow –
Are cursed as insincere,
Tormented, as you’ve been.
Never trust them;
As if in horror, they
Spread idle rumors,
Uncaring of who
They, it is they who should be shunned.
Turn your back on them, they are
Insignificant, nothing, less than nothing.
Instead, let us follow our own hearts,
Take the path we were meant to take.
Let our spirits seek harmony
In our thoughts, beauty in nature,
Power in our own spirit, indomitable.
Let us transform this grotesque
Toad of hurt into nobility.
And let us love’s sweetness savor,
Let us unravel every tangled strand
Of this our life together, as we are, free
As the wind blowing, as the clouds streaming,
True to the universe, to ourselves, to our soul’s
Compass, nature’s bright sagesse.
Come then – banish these doubts,
Worth scarcely half a thought –
And let us together sup, you and I,
Openly, this evening, outside,