Literary Yard

Search for meaning

By: Mayumi Yamamoto

On your last birthday when
Tenten was still alive
you were not
with me.

It was November 2022, when I couldn’t celebrate it
because you disappeared from my sight.
Did I tell you something wrong?
I was terrified thinking if
you might be lost

On your birthday when Tenten was beside me
I did take it for granted because
I could never imagine
she’d be gone

On your birthday when Tenten was together with me,
I was thinking of you, where you were
if you’d come back
or not.

Thanks to the gods, soon you returned to me.
Now your birthday is coming again,
with Tenten gone already.
She’s nowhere and
you are here.

I wonder how my little world
has been changed
in a year.

I listen to the radio as usual.
I hear about the ongoing
genocide inflicted
on Palestine
as well

the massacres in

I’ll send you the card on your birthday,
with my special message this year:
Please stay with me
until the day
I go.

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