Articles tagged "Japan"


Noodling in New York

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No Japanese person would call a cat Thomas Jefferson.

Panels read from right to left.

Spirit Summoning, Part VI

The next time we met, Yoko pretended that the Shikoku conversation had never happened. Following her lead, I didn’t bring it up either. After the summoning job was done, Yoko turned to me....

The Decline and Fall of a Translator’s Brain

Just when you think you’ve figured out what is going on in the Toh Enjoe story “The History of the Decline and Fall of the Galactic Empire,” you trip on another oblique reference...

The Hole in the Garden, Part II

The woman showed up exactly one month to the day after the pigʼs arrival. I had just finished cleaning the house and was thinking about feeding the pig before I started waxing the floors when...

Do Not Tremble

It trembles It is trembling again today I did not know that the earth Is an unruly cradle  A cruel cradle that lets Neither adult nor child sleep   It is March, it is spring It...

The Navidad Incident: The Downfall of Matías Guili

The Navidad Incident takes place in the fictional South Sea island republic of Navidad. The novel opens as a delegation of Japanese war veterans pays an official visit to the ex-World War II...

Bonsai

Our bodies are like Bonsai trees. Not one innocent leaf can grow freely, without being viciously suppressed, so narrow is our ideal of appearance —Khyentsé Norbu   After I...

Shigeru Mizuki’s “Onward Towards Our Noble Deaths”

The Japanese story form known as manga—with its extended plotlines and distinct pictorial style—falls somewhere between graphic novel and comic book. Widely read in Japan, where it is a...

Director’s Notes on “Sway”

I based my first film on a dream. A dream also inspired my second film, made three years later. Through a gloomy thicket in the shadows of a tree bathed in white light, I witnessed a scene still...

The Last Picture Show

I’d just come up to Tokyo from a Kyushu port town that had a U.S. military base and was living with some friends in a crummy little apartment in a wooden building north of Inokashira Park....

The Kiso Wayfarer

You know, Karuizawa at the time was a veritable ghost town. It was autumn of Meiji 24 (1891), and the area appeared to be at the height of decline. At any rate, the once thriving post town on the...

Walking the Keihin Factory Belt with Stuart Dybek

As usual, the boy missed the fly ball that anyone else would have caught with his eyes closed, and it rolled into a thicket of reeds by the river.  The audible sighs of the other kids were...

Japanese


from “Sentimental Education”

The woman gave birth to a baby girl at the maternity hospital and then disappeared the very same day. Located not far from downtown Isezaki-cho, the maternity hospital was well known as a place...

From “A Drifting Life”

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Waiting in the Offing

"Itoyama's sharp eye and sly wit set her apart from other Japanese women writers. Her writing style is intellectually controlled, and often glows with wisdom."--Kenzaburo Oe "My hiccups...

Inside and Other Short Fiction: Japanese Women on Japanese Women, compiled by Cathy Layne

Inside and Other Short Fiction--Japanese Women by Japanese Women offers a corrective to Western and Japanese stereotypes of Japanese women's sexuality. The stories in this collection are...

Metamorphosis

1 He later recalled that it had been a strange, sleepless night. Sanogawa Shinsha had fallen asleep in bed with a script propped on his chest when word arrived that his younger brother, Tojaku, had...

Granny Long Tongue

This story is set in the time when monsters were still living up there in the mountains and down here in the forests. Granny Long Tongue and Red Ban the Ogre lived high up on Mt. Okuyama, at...

Whenever I Sit at a Bar Drinking Like This, I Always Think What a Sacred Profession Bartending Is

Whenever I sit at a bar drinking like this, I always think what a sacred profession bartending is. The bartender, with the stained-glass shelves of many-colored bottles behind him, moves precisely...