Saying Goodbye

April 13, 2014 at 12:52 pm

By Terry Watada.

I could
hear
his
voice almost

it was clear,   articulate
sharp to the ear,
serious
with a bit
of an
accent i couldn’ever place

he
told me
to    remember.

we are the children …

i have a photograph,
his image
comes
back like a corona
spill  on the horizon

his long hair,  his drooping moustache
his thin smiling eyes
behind aviator
glasses

in sandals, worn blue jeans
and a black
kimono   jacket

his one fist raised above
like
an American
Black     nation athlete

in defiance of a cruel
and
racist state.

he was young
and
strong then;
held up by Malcolm,
Stokely    and Angela Davis

Yuri, and “Charlie” and
Chris &
Joanne

and the matsuri swirled
behind
him  with
the toshiyori resting on
chairs  observing and
smiling.

the smells of tempura
salmon gohan so-mein, chow
mein  (Cumberland and
otherwise)
soaked
like  smoke
into his kimono

and shone
like a badge of honour
and
even
rising to envelop him
as a companion aura

well, don’t you know, we got to go for broke …

his voice
was distinct yet
as unclear    as the past
shrouded in   mist.

he told   me
to remember and
keep fighting.

free the land, free the land …
goodbye   ken

may you rest
in
a peaceful

Pure Land,   your

karma
affects us
still

for Ken Shikaze  1951 – 2014