Fall 2008 • Vol. XXX No. 4 Poetry |

Zozo-ji

Buddhist temple, Tokyo     One cry from a lone bird over a misted river is the expression of grief,     in Japanese. Let women do what they need.     And afterward knit a red cap, pray     for their water-child… In long rows, stone children in bibs and hats, the smell of pine and cooled     earth— It was a temple     for the babied dead. I found it via the Internet. Where they offered pinwheels     and bags of sweets for the aborted ones, or ones who'd lived     but not enough… Moss-smell, I can project there. Azaleas     pinking the water. When her lord asked her again how it died, she said     As an echo off the cliffs of Kegon. ☭ ukiyo: in Japanese it sounds like "Sorrowful World" winds trying to hold each other     in silken robes what in English sounds like "Floating World" a joke on the six realms in which we tarry what they called the "Sorrowfu

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Dana Levin
Dana Levin is the author of four books of poetry, most recently Banana Palace (Copper Canyon Press, 2016), which was a finalist for the Rilke Prize. She serves as Distinguished Writer in Residence at Maryville University in Saint Louis.

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