Miyuki Tsurumaki


In the shiny morning,
lying asleep on the sofa,
I hear whispers.

Daddy and mommy,
what are you doing?

I listen to their laughter.

She never completed
her once-a-week challenge,
the Sunday paper crosswords.

She mumbles the words;
he fills up all the boxes.

Talking to each other is their comfort.

There’re no space,
no interruption,
just the perfect time.

Let me close my eyes
a little more
a little longer.

a Poem

A town is people.
the people are hearts.
their hearts are the town.

Latin Wind

for April

Humans are stones that crumble easily.
Tremble with fear.
Cry for joy.

Just stop by in the summer wind.

Music finds the way into
the secret place of the soul.
Rhythm chases the steps.

Your voices remind me
of the sounds of beaches
Copacabana, Ipanema.

Your waves surge for my shore.
As if  the flood tide comes with moonlight,
they make me feel warmer and warmer.

Latin wind
…new feeling

In celebration of LATIN VOICES’ first live event on September 3, 2010
What a Friend

What are days for?
Days are where we live,
They come, they wake up
Time and time over.
They are to be happy in
Where can we live but days?
– Philip Larkin

All I have to do is to remember you,
to share with you
how long I’ve known you.

It’s a help,
a you,
a friend.

What a find.

In a Corner of the Backstage

for Namsuk Kang

On Friday afternoon let me try something new.

We were drawn into the dark.
The red velvet aisles were dusty.
Turning up my eyes,
the great Masquerade Ball
fascinated me.
The air of glorious days
grazed on my cheeks.
With the rhythm of hearts beating
we walked backstage.

I wanted to have this exotic world all to myself.
We took off the hard nylon brown cover
a white piano
forgotten piano

“You wanna try now?”
Joy lit up her eyes.
When the words freed from her lust,
her eyes wanted my approval.
Her right hand touched a few keys shyly,
in no time at all, her sounds changed airily,
were swinging. The piano came back to life.
A few electric sidelights were falling warm, kindhearted.
They were lights headed only for her,
her own light.

In a corner of the backstage,
there is a place where a dream
loneliness are together.

Open Ground

After the mowing
a few steamy horses and sheep.
I can hear them breathing.

Morning sounds.

Cracking. Cracking.
I walk down a frosty field.

Water like honey,
the murmur of a stream
runs narrow and slow.

Dew is just a dot.
Much dew turns a white carpet.

I can touch you.
I don’t touch you.

I can feel you.
New York City Marathon, 2009

Start is 10 o’clock.
You are all set.

This is best weather,
It’s not cold, not warm, or misty.

Here is one love:
over 40,000 runners passing in front of me,
supporters clapping their hands.
You’re such a nice person.
Oh, my goodness. Wow.
You can do it, Andy.
You’re amazing.
You’re great.
Almost there.
Keep going.
Take a shot.
Pick it up.

They want,
We serve,
Gatorade! Gatorade!

From repetition
to sympathizing.

From people
to people.

Empty cups cups cups,
as many as we can see.

Autumn Central Park
saturated in smiles,
exhausted throats,

Evening sunlight
holds me softly.
My Kingfisher

Middle August,
the express rattled on
took me from roasting Agra
to the Ganges, a holy place.

Bump, bump, bump
I hit my head on the ceiling.
I got up.
The upper bunk held me.

Dizzy morning,
a hard bunk made me sleepy.
My cloudy window held rural landscapes

endless: quieted cows, plotted rice fields,
no hills,
no trees,
no humans.

He came into my sight.
A long, straight, dagger-like bill,
a stubby tail,

When he stretched out,
he showed up inner burning feathers,
wingtips stubbed with iridescent blue,

a dead branch waving,
the water ruffling,
splashed toward sky.
He’s gone.
He’s gone…


The galloping of a horse
chasing history –

A singer bent her knees.
A wooden drum plays high on the edge
and low on the middle. Her stick, swung down from the sky,
burst the peace of the miniature park for a moment.

Summer eve surrounded with oak trees
effluence of white, pink, blue tinted us, the strung lights were
flowing on to the stage.
Oh, how beautiful…

Kids’ white noses face-painted from their brows straight down
make them excited. They twirl broad hats,
dance around and around.
Matisse, ‘what would you have said if you were me?’

I heard the sounds of the ground rejoice.
How I miss the summerdusk darkens…


Encounter With Death

for my father

An etherized patient laid upon a table
at ten o’clock on a summer day.
Thousands and thousands of lights
lit me bright.
The metallic sound of knives and needles
beside innumerable tubes
echoed in the room.
I couldn’t hear my father’s voice
calling my name again and again.
And I came to my senses.
An unknown room, strange sounds,
the blinking red lamps.
I heard in the dark room
the beating of memento mori.

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