The Pond: Poems from Ueno Park and Shinobazu Pond

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9781467971027: The Pond: Poems from Ueno Park and Shinobazu Pond
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Poems from Tokyo's Ueno Park and its temple complex, including Shinobazu Pond. The Shitamachi area that is the setting of this 2012 collection was destroyed by Bombing of Tokyo by the US Army Air Forces in March of 1945. The toll of the dead reached 100,000, outnumbering the immediate tolls of Hiroshima or Nagasaki. The pond itself, Shobazu Pond, survived, as it has survived all other local events since the retreat of the glaciers at the end of the last ice age. The book weighs Buddhism and Christianity against each other and ends with a coda mocking official Japanese attitudes toward the Fukushima tsunami and attendant nuclear disaster. The poem is called "The Wisdom of Monju" and Youtube has a video of my reading it at Infinity Books in Asakusa.

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About the Author:

Wayne Pounds, in what may have been an ill considered moment, was born in Oklahoma. Grew up there and in northern California, and began his graduate work in the jungles of Vietnam. Became a migrant worker in the academic bean fields, crossing three continents, then a full-time canner in a Tokyo beanery, where after twenty-five years, ae. 65, he has arrived at stasis. Spends his best hours trying to keep up with his eight-year-old daughter.

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