and many more

  “Happy Birthday, Grandma!” The old living room smelled of new paint and was filled with a cacophony and commotion of children and adults whom she barely recognized. She sat in the family heirloom wingback chair, which the daughter-in-law had recently reupholstered with the “candy apple” cover. She missed her husband, her children’s father, who had passed away years earlier. She thought of her friends, … Continue reading and many more

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

resignation

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

my Valentine

  I walked into the restaurant. The staff whisked by me. I found my friends waving. “Busy, this place,” I took my seat. “It’s Valentine’s Day,” they chuckled. Couples occupied other tables. We ordered our food and exchanged our Valentine’s gifts. “We were over there. A year ago.” I turned to where my friend was pointing. They then started to talk about something or somebody, … Continue reading my Valentine

picture perfect

We sometimes manipulate our fear into believing in the intangible. We believe or want to believe, whether for fear of being alone or unsafe, that the deceased loved ones are watching over us. On the street, however, when we meet people who hear voices and see images that we don’t discern, we tend to feel uneasy and avoid them. Maybe, those who can see and … Continue reading picture perfect

happy is as happy does

  She was pretty and smart, kind, soft-spoken and always smiling. Everyone liked her. After she killed herself, jumping off the building near her house, we, her classmates from high school, gathered at the entrance to the building. We all looked up, where she stood by herself a few days before, and wandered in our own thoughts. Why she killed herself was speculated – from … Continue reading happy is as happy does