Page 15 - WTP Vol. IX #7
P. 15

 I wonder why this one is here— why its hieroglyphs are Japanese.
I try to read it, but its thick strokes are too difficult.
They are made for adult eyes.
Papa touches the stone.
It is nearly
the size of a mountain— its peak pierces above. Part of a knife.
jagged slicing apart the sky
one stroke at a time.
He tells me in a low voice, The road is empty.
some people didn’t leave here.
The desert is empty. Everything is gone.
I was just a boy when I came here, he says,
I was an old man when I left.
I think he is trying to leave but he has been stuck here for decades.
On the drive home I want to think instead of chocolate ice cream
of my tenth birthday
of Egyptian ceremonies
where gods will accept my prayers and douse the burning embers
at my feet.
I hold his hand—tugging. I must be the man now.
I tell him nothing is here
that I am hungry and we will come back next year.
We never do.
 Suzuki is a Japanese American writer who recently graduated from USC and lives in Los Angeles. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in 805 Lit, The Racket Journal, and Abandon Journal. He is currently writing a novel on the generational disconnect of Japanese American immigrants and their children.

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