At Hime station only the
elderly board the JR trains.
Youth has abandoned the toil
of the rice fields for the glitter of Tokyo streets.

They ride the train into an autumn sunset
comparing in whispers how much their
hands resemble the gnarled branches
of the passing cypress trees.

Cradled in the hum of Sunday trains
they dream in colors denied in waking hours
by cataracts and glaucoma. Bright leaves continue to fall
in memory. Only the red shift of August 6th
still attaches itself to tired retinas.

Steve Howard is a novelist, stand up comedian, and teacher living in Japan. Visit Steve at StevenBHowWrites.com.
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Steve Howard is a novelist, stand up comedian, and teacher living in Japan. Visit Steve at StevenBHowWrites.com.

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