Shuji the rancorous

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Mr. Hoshi broke us into study groups of four to work on math problems and science projects. Groups had to form with two boys and two girls. In my group, […]

Mr. Hoshi

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Miss Kawano retired after three years of her reign, and Mr. Hoshi took over our class. He preached like hell. At the end of the day, before we were dismissed […]

Barefoot Gen

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My sister told me about the black rain. She said if you got showered by the black rain, first, your hair would fall off, and then you would vomit blood […]

Two faces of the Emperor

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I was nine years old when Emperor Hirohito passed away. The 64th year of Showa had just begun several days before. It was unfathomable to me that Japan went from […]

“Angry Jizo”

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We had an annual movie-watching day at school before the summer break. In my first year, they played a stop-motion animated film called Okori Jizo, meaning angry Jizo. The paradox […]

Grandmother

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My grandmother passed away in June 2011, a few months after the Tohoku earthquake. She was 98 years old, but she had stopped living much earlier. When I went home […]

Essay 2 – Jizo

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The second time I asked my grandmother what I should write about, she suggested the “Jizo” of our community. Jizo, in general, is the statue of Bodhisattva. They are less […]

Essay 1 – bath furnace

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Among a handful of good things that happened during three years with Miss Kawano was that she made us write a short essay every day. Most of the time, we […]

Milk

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What my stomach couldn’t take was milk. Milk was served with school lunch in post-war Japan, as it was considered to provide the same nutrition that made Americans tall and […]

School lunch and Africa

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Miss Kawano remained as our teacher for three years. I was unhappy, and the stress and the damaged gut caused an eating disorder. We had a school lunch system that […]