Pretty city, won’t you tell me
Why when the river sighs on rainy nights,
I think of singing 燕 (tsubame) perched to the right
Of couples embracing on the benches by the sea?
Why, oh pretty city, as I flâne beside the plane trees
I think of 杉木 (sugiki) and 蝶 (chou)’s spiral flight,
And columns conjure skyscrapers and the sight
Of tangled iron, wood, and glass that brought the passioned to their knees?
Dear pretty city, when your bells toll and chime,
I hear the branches whisper on the maple leaf and sakura hill
Where on a cool Monday moonrise I belonged
In the arms of one I loved, who loved me. How time
Pounds like taiko drums, fate blades like moulin windmills.
Do I wait on the bridge, or follow the swallow song?
Written January 7, 2019.
Parameters: Petrarchan Sonnet, combining Paris and Tokyo
Commentary: Not my strongest poem, but I will post it anyway since I haven’t posted in a while.