Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Four Seasons in Kawamoto

Kawamoto in Summer

In the late summer, heavy rainy and thunderstorms punctuate hot, dry days. The thunder is low and loud here. It rumbles in the bellies of clouds before rolling out and crashing into the sky, not like the crack-of-a-whip thunder we know follows lightning, this thunder barrels through the stage, lifts the ground with both hands and shakes it with a low, baritone moan.

Kawamoto in Fall

In the autumn, the fog, not quite transparent or opaque,  lingers around the mountains like  unfinished thoughts in the minds of philosophers. I love the sizzling, crackling sound of light rain hitting the leaves of trees and blades of grass. I woke up to that wet symphony just after noon. At six o’clock, I know well the position of the sun in the sky. I know its color. A rosewater hue amidst a salty sky.  It has just slipped below the peaks of the blue mountains, its glow, a mere sizzle beneath the crisp fog. Just before sunset, the farmers set their crop waste ablaze, and with backs bent low towards the earth, they painstakingly tend to every plant by hand.

Kawamoto in Winter

As winter approaches the days become shorter, the sun flees and hides behind the mountains the first chance it gets. But now a cool breeze passes through the mountains in at dusk. And the farmers continue to burn the crop waste is small, low fires, that give off tiny funnels of grey smoke. The crackling of burning wood, and the charcoal smell and the swift caress of passing smoke with forever be adjoined to my winter memory. 

Kawamoto in Spring

In the spring the heavy rains flood the rice paddies, creating a mosaic of mirrors, each reflecting the mountains and sky above. I dance between the lakes. I stand on the edge of the rice paddy, on the edge of two worlds. The one above me is a real world, whose heights I can never reach. The one below me is an illusion of that unattainable reality. Which is closer, the impossible or the imaginary? The heights we can never reach, or their false reflections?  Somewhere between them, we are living a fragile life. 

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