after two formerly inconsecutive lines by Nishiwaki Junzaburō


Poetry is where poetry is not
Reality is lonesome

A comrade made of new-cut pine sitting rooms, because of foxed pages
and clamorous awnings, warm dregs improved by salt plum
—the breakfast nightingale has only commendations,
and hangovers, even if Berlin remains what you’re barricaded from.

Fantasy traveller, forget the temperate gauge—dispatch the claws
of a hundred skunk cabbage, we do better breathlessly
and undistracted at work in reassembly, limiting our confinement
to enclosure and saké, even if Osaka remains beyond the territorial coordinate.

Typhoon #10 had my name on it, not yours!
By the southern mountainside at Yakushima, we calculate
three families of grey macaque. Karatani made the transition to historian,
so should you, even if the only gallery for it all becomes the Met.

Reality is lonesome in poetry, illusory in fine gardening.
We take up your challenge of establishing gigantic pine between two detachments.
Fish in the storm drain, because you can. When the double-flowered cherry
sheds, celebrate—even if spring threatens to return again.



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Corey Wakeling

Corey Wakeling is a poet and critic living in Takarazuka, Japan. His second full-length collection of poems is The Alarming Conservatory (Giramondo, 2018).

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