I used to wear masks. One for each occasion – for protection, for performance, for ritual and ceremonial purposes, and for disguise to avoid recognition. One day, I threw them into the woods. The sound of the shatter roared exoneration, emancipation. Once the composure reclaimed, I contemplated. After careful deliberation, I now live in hiding and often wear masks.     Written for Friday … Continue reading masks

a doll

  She avoids eye contact with me, her gaze focused on the void. Her mouth is flat. Her ornate kimono faded. Her ebony hair, however, glistens in the rays of frail light coming from the tiny window behind her. It’s the only window in the room. The room is at the north end of the house and dark and cold even during the day. An … Continue reading a doll


I was 21 and had no prospect. I hated my job, my life. I felt trapped. I wanted to be somewhere else, someone else. I didn’t know what I wanted – no one asked me anyway. I just wondered, though, whether there was something out there for me. I submitted my resignation and left my job. That was thirty years ago. 最初に勤めた会社を三年で辞めたのは、もう三十年前だ。職種で選んだのではなく、その会社に就いた。自分は高卒女子という一番下の位から抜け出すことはないのだとわかった。何やってるんだ、私は、と、焦った。次々に結婚退職していく同期の娘達は皆年上だったが、羨ましかった。私も早く辞めたいと思った。初めに出した退職願いは理由がないからと課長から突き返された。その後、上司が変わり、少し居心地は良くなったけれど、一旦辞めたいと思うと、止まらなかった。もっと何かがあるのではないだろうか、そう考えた。   Continue reading resignation