When the Sandman forgets to visit you, I will hold your hand. I will wait for you to finish staring at your tea. I will trace the stars on your skin, and wait.
When my soul feels too heavy to wait for you, I will hold you close in a tight embrace and pray to God my arms would never let you go. I’ll pray my hardest.
When you run out of our room and into your own, I will not follow you. I will wait by the door and count the sound the water makes when it hears only our gravity and falls on the floor. When it feels like the air has drowned all sound, I shall make my own and wait for you. I’ll spell your name out into the world until it begs me to stop and you return.
I shall make pancakes when you come back. The way you want them to; not pale nor crispy just something in between — somewhat in the grays.
And when I can no longer remember the face of the Sandman, and can only dance to the faint memory of your heartbeat, I shall still wait for you. I will.
Dear internet people of the present and the future,
I have been dragging my ill physical self to work for more than a week now. I have not had the chance to take a sick leave because of the many things we had to accomplish. But as mere mortals, our bodies are destined to just betray us at one point despite our efforts — mine did. I had to claim two sick leaves and had to go back to work today even if I have not completely recovered.
Today’s classroom scenario with my grade 3 boys:
Student 1: Hi! Are you feeling better now?
Me: Well. . . yes, but I’m still not completely okay.
Student 2: Then, why are you here?
Me: Because you have a test today and I’m worried for you guys.
Student 3: What? You shouldn’t be worried! We’re ready for the test.
Me: Okay! Cool. Is everyone ready for the test?
Me: Well, let’s start then! Bring out the materials you need for the test.
Half of the class: . . .
Half of my heart: . . .
Half the class: It’s not with me. It’s in my locker. What materials?
Me: This. is. why. I’m. worried.
Student 3: . . .
But I surely missed them — my sweet little boys.
“Line them up like purple pansies”
I never understood what it meant. You used to say this when you lay asleep in the middle of the night.
I told you about it once and you laughed at me. I never understood what they meant — your laughter and the sentence that seemed to belong in your dreams.
I never told you about it. But I will tell you now.
The first time I heard you speak in your sleep woke me up in a haste. Your voice was clear and cold when you commanded him, her, or them to line them up like purple pansies.
I sat up and watched you sleep; waiting for you to say them again. You never did.
I heard it once more but this time you were probably in a different dream. You whispered that I should line them up like purple pansies. I was bewildered. I allowed myself to smile at your strange sleeping habit.
I moved some hair off your face and whispered back. Yes, love, I will line them up like purple pansies. I got up and turned the lights out.
I must say that I heard them countless times. Each time, was different from the other time. The only thing that remained similar was that I never understood what it meant.
I still don’t but I miss the way you say it.
“I don’t know anything about life,” cried the little boy in my class.
I was startled.
He was nine.
I was twenty seven.
We were riding the same ferry, under the same sky.
I smiled at him and told him I know nothing more about it than he does.
“Aha,” exclaimed the Cheshire Cat. His grin was so luminescent if anyone would ask, I’d say somebody hung two moons that night.
“I knew I’d find you here,” exclaimed the cat.
“– or maybe not,” he mumbled.
“What seems to be bothering you?” he inquired.
“Hmmm.. Well… I was just wondering what becomes of me if I ever disappear from this reality,” she whispered.
“Well… Let’s see. How would you like to be remembered?” asked the Cheshire Cat
“I don’t know. Just, you know — like me,” she murmured.
“Oh please!” he chuckled.
“Nobody is ever remembered just for who they are,” the Cheshire Cat continued.
“You see… we all have different eyes.”
and he vanished ever so slowly
n i g h t .
Today, the sky was beautiful. I went out with the people I love. There were only a few cars on the road but the line in the restaurant was long. The coffee I ordered was a bit too strong for my taste and my favorite Mango Graham cake was too dry. The ambiance in the cafe shop was reassuring and warm.
I guess some parts of life are clear-cut dualisms.
I cannot say that it is what makes life beautiful;
but life is beautiful nonetheless.
It is simple and beautiful like most Japanese literature. Reading Hiromi Kawakami’s Strange Weather in Tokyo is a lot like staring at the night sky and wondering what about it seems so fascinating.
The book is a love story that is very relatable despite its uncanny situation and plot.
An almost forty year old Tsukiko finds herself in the company of her Japanese secondary school teacher whom she barely remembers when he first approaches her.
They later on find themselves entangled in a karmic situation — meeting without making plans and without having any expectations and demands.
The book takes you on a journey of doubts and fears all in the name of love. It’s not heavily laden with societal problems and pressures, instead it focused more on the characters’ internal predicaments and fears.