Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2011 v10n1
print version

Electronic News: Nagasaki

Surrounded by a field of white poppies, women in lab gowns capped and goggled, stitching together circuit boards, my father, black-rimmed spectacles, clothed like a priest, where he can’t be touched, behind the glass. Fine grains of transistors, the women stare through microscopes, testing purity. Their mothers and fathers surely farmed rice. He enjoys repeating a story, visiting the museum, monument to one day’s death light. A melted pocket watch like the one his father left to him. A photograph of a man without hands. Afterwards, no tourist, he finds an udon shack, a real workers’ place, and through stray phrases makes the waitress understand: Hai, he wants soup, but onegai, without the raw white light of the egg.  end

return to top