Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Nakasendo Way

Mukesh Williams June 2010

No one inhabits these ancient highways
Except wildlife, words and emotions,
But the curve of the road, the wooden houses,
The stone steps, the steep climb,
And the unreachable horizon
Are still covered with heavy snow,
Pug-marked by raccoon dogs hunts,
Collaged with clog footprints
And terraced by winter blizzard.

Words can still recreate the history of
Matrimonial alliances, political intrigues
And economic transactions,
Emotions can still trace the travel of
Princess Kazunomiya from Kyoto to Edo
On the Hime no Kaido to marry a shogun
Leaving sentiment and family behind
Like a hungry animal, lost traveler or a storm,
To strengthen an empire, forfeit the self.

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