Bridge in a Stone Garden
Posing, in belted,
Carp, eyeing us up.
Haruís Ramen Shop
Your sturdy arms,
with dumpling pan,
your cracked, working feet.
With set Japanese phrase,
towering over your mother,
me, waitress, in bandana.
Our helmeted heads, together, in Ray-Bans,
in the photograph that made my sister laugh
so hard she got it framed. It was the day
you bought me sweet potato from a street stall.
When we split, your mother cried. And your father
apologised his son wasnít good enough.
My parents were grateful for your cross-Pacific call.
East is East and West is West, Dad had said.
But they got used to you: opening the car door
for Mum, trying to be an English gentleman.
Your creased eyes; cracked feet; your motherís hands;
your fatherís face ó wide and well-defined.
And you, Haru, chasing me, with the pigís trotters
for the noodle broth. Until we stopped.
If you have any thoughts on this poem, Alexandra Corrin-Tachibana
would be pleased to hear them.