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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & General Editor
Volume 9, Number 4, December 2015


Charles D. Tarlton
Northampton, Massachusetts, USA

Courtly Love

If you love without evoking love in return—if through the vital expression of yourself as a loving person you fail to become a loved person, then your love is impotent, it is a misfortune.

                               —Karl Marx

The boatman pulled the steering oar sharply to the right and the chokkibune glided up to the dock. Princess Tokushi smiled so slightly and quickly no one noticed but the boatman, who blushed as he tied up the line. Soldiers and noblemen marched down the dock, their silk garments rustling, and escorted the Princess to her carved norimono. They were gone in seconds, but the images and scent of the departed Princess lingered in the boatman’s adoration.

Kaiseki Ryori
elaborate Asian melodies
melting on your tongue
dreams of forgotten festivals
the magic in fairy tales

she came to the dance
with me, but stayed among her friends
I saw them laughing
of course, it had all gone wrong
the moment she saw my old car

the projector slows
and stops. The spools turn in reverse
Her Highness returns
the boat backs out of the bay
disappears into the sea



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