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POEM: Miso Soup

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Miso Soup
(for Jennifer)

the only thing better than the taste of the sushi
is the lingering aftertaste
mixed with miso shiru and warm ocha
a sensation so rich
it’s almost another meal in itself
I always order one extra piece of unagi
and remember walking into Meiji Jingu
holding your hand
you gave me a book on Zen —
I was into that then —
and I gave you an atlas of our world
so we could choose the next destination
we sat in the kaitenzushi-ya in Shibuya
and watched the endless parade
of plates, daring us
in Nikko, we took a photo in an unexpected
tram car that was right there on the sidewalk
then climbed up all those stairs
to see the sanzaru
there were many little tremors and
the one big one
that had us scurrying for the doorjamb
just as the shaking stopped
and yes, there were cherry blossoms —
there always are —
right outside our bedroom window
and the cleaning man came by each week
and always seemed surprised to see us
we gave him our maple tree
(and you gave me its cousin years later)
I savor these moments and roll them around
on my tongue, heavy with the dusky taste
of shoyu and the tang of vinegar in the rice

Published in Audio Poems Family Japan My poems Poetry Travel


  1. Amy Amy

    Awww, nice one!

  2. Guga Guga

    Nice of you, puting these words so well for us that had some moments like you did in Japan. Domo Arigato!

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