Venus to Mars Stopover - View of Shinsho-ji-Temple

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Posts: 1500
Joined: 02 Mar 2016, 18:07
Location: Between the mountains and the sea

Venus to Mars Stopover - View of Shinsho-ji-Temple

#1 Post by FranktheFrank » 11 Sep 2019, 13:54

“Rain falls on the city and runs down the gutters
to empty into the sea without soaking the ground”

― Haruki Murakami

Narita Spaceport Arrivals shines with miles of glass, moulded
synthetic materials with vast areas of moving walkways,
elevators, stairways, toilets, and concourses. Four hundred
Space-Airbus passengers disembark eager to stretch thrombosed
legs, eager to find a loo.

The indigenes know just a little English, a fellow 'outside-person'
he journey is sixty miles, but his hotel booking says it’s just a few
blocks away. His money is returned without a word.

His 5-star hotel room is a box with bathroom. A television and deep
bed with a swan-feather duvet, he can just squeeze between bed
and wall. Space is limited or rooms designed for a small people short
of leg room.

He enters a wooden structure with: ‘Café’ emblazoned in faded gold
over the entrance. A waitress approaches in a red cardigan, cooking
smells cling to her like a sea fog. She moves in close, a whiff
of pheromones, he twitches at the hint of arousal, orders a fizzy
“Tis 'spensive here; machine outside berrer.”
Old town ambience is a reserved space for natives only; perhaps
the stub-legged tables for squatting customers are an embarrassment.

Slatternly female
Pheromoned red jumper excites
Propriety Rules

He continues his walk through a village of small houses with tiled
roofs, and windows set in rows of neat squares, he follows the winding
path through the narrow streets. The residents move to the front, greet
pilgrims with bows, smile their good-will’s from behind a cultural hedge.

Houses overflow
red glazed roofs packed tight - sparkle
in the midday sun.

A school of teenage girls throng the plaza and display leas of bent
chubby legs, splayed out from too-short check-patterned skirts.
Squeals of delight at comic book characters, Godzilla
and doe eyed beauties.

Maidens dream prepare
Husbands and children

The temple looms, towers over the sky, colossal black timbers impressing
the gods with scale and splendour. The engineer in him wonders how
on earth did they erect such a huge structure. Manicured gardens weave
peace and harmony, waves roll on a shallow seashore tended by invisible
monks. Incense blocks smoulder in pedestals, waft evocative odours
that transcend time. The sky looms large he could so easily fall into it.

Manicured gardens
hibiscus hedges - green waves
breaking on the shore

The hotel food is a gooey mess, he wishes management would employ
a chef with more than a soupçon of culinary skill. An Anglo-Chinese
woman smiles at him at breakfast as if he's a long lost relative,
he is tempted to wave in return, but he’s afraid it might lead
to an incongruous conversation.

The lady in the hotel shop wraps his gilded plate lovingly, taking
infinite care; he thinks of Em packing corned beef sandwiches
for his box. Counter girls simper when gaiji's arrive; kowtow
at the big-nose's.

A busboy bows at the airport transit, completely ignored
by the departing guests. At the departure lounge he chats
to a sarariman and hands him his card. The sarariman
reads it carefully, “Ahh, Managing Director San.” Mid-flight
an attendant brings him a hand-written company card
from Sales Director San.

The officer at passport-control ravishes him with her bright
eyes and enigmatic smile. He pauses, was this the mystery
of this enchanting place. He wants so much to stay
to ask of her so much more.

An enigmatic
smile encapsulates his heart
with poised tenderness

Posts: 285
Joined: 21 Sep 2017, 23:23

Re: Haibun of Venus to Mars Stopover and View of Shinsho-ji-Temple

#2 Post by capricorn » 12 Sep 2019, 02:49

It is a long time since I read a haibun, I have forgotten the 'rules'. There is a lot to take in on first read but I have enjoyed the read and will be reading again. Just a couple of minor points -

Is leas a typo in 'leas of chubby legs'
and I feel the ending might read better as

He wants so much to stay and ask much more of her - but perhaps 2 much's are too close together.


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