Snow Adventure
by Yoko Danno

In the dead of night,
out of the 11th floor of a downtown
apartment building, nebulous shadows
slip out of a window, gently glide down
along the deserted street,

by fluorescent moonlight
gathering speed,
slide down the ice-covered slopes―

resolute for adventures,
a boy, in a blue silk scarf,
dreaming of tropical fish swimming,
and a girl, in a red wool cap,
streaming long black hair in the cold wind,

ski down the soft skin of an enormous
white monster in hibernation,

heading for a point of cosmic contact―

By midday warmed
by the piercing sunshine,

trees shed heaps
of snow from their limbs

as if slipping out
of padded
white kimonos,

stand naked
in the slanting rays
like antennas,

to get ready
for communication

with meteors.

AUTHOR’S NOTE ON THE PHOTOGRAPH: I took this photo when I visited Mt. Zao in 2002, which is why I wasn’t included in it.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I wrote this poem, inspired by the frost-covered trees at Mt. Zao, a famous ski resort in Northern Japan’s volcanic region.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Yoko Danno lives in Kobe, Japan. For decades, she has written poetry solely in English. Her poems have appeared internationally in numerous journals and anthologies, online, and in print. Her books of poetry include Epitaph for memories (The Bunny and the Crocodile Press, 2002); The Blue Door, a collaboration with James C. Hopkins (The Word Works, 2006); a sleeping tiger dreams of manhattan: poetry, photographs and sound by Danno, Hopkins, and Bernard Stoltz (The Ikuta Press, 2008, and translated and published in Latvia, 2012); Trilogy & Hagoromo: A Celestial Robe (The Ikuta Press, 2010); and Aquamarine (Glass Lyre Press, 2014). Her translation, Songs and Stories of the Kojiki, the creation myth, songs and historical narratives, compiled in the 8th c., Japan, was published by Ahadada Books (Toronto/Tokyo, 2008, and Red Moon Press, 2014). Visit her at http://ikutapress.com/danno3.html.