England Visit

Unbelievable as it may seem, I wrote this on a visit to England in what must have been late 2006 I think. I was on my way from Japan to Canada, and England seemed like such a contrast to me after the interminable, compressed Japanese summer. The picture below is one that I took during this visit I think. It’s appropriate for me to publish this now as I’m currently in England again, this time visiting friends and family.

despite
the English transit system
my grandmother’s
tiny frame
and incurable lateness,
the cities like mouths
crammed with roundabout teeth
the invisible distance of mountains
the visible proximity of family
and those friends who never grow up,
the dancefloors that never change
are never cleaned
and tiny packages of pre-made food,
the rolling boredom of country life,
how we plunge in perfect silence
across the etymology of villages
the old stores are swept up like leaves
and the pavements are polished and picked clean,
for the first time,
there is something like home in this place,
in the bubbling rush of streaming fields.

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