Musashi Mix Inq

Hibakusha

Posted on September 14, 2010

[Nagasaki mon Amore]

Hibakusha, ©MMX

Hibakusha are, by definition, a dying breed. For 65 years the world has waited, and with each passing year it becomes harder to hold that bated breath. In a way, we are all hibakusha. The Nuclear Age is one of hyperbole and forgetfulness; paranoia and separation… It’s good to see that some things haven’t changed.

In August of 1945, my great-grandparents were still locked away in the Arizona desert while my grandparents continued to scrape out new lives here in Chicago; surviving.

At the same time, my great-uncle in the MIS continued to interrogate Japanese POWs in PNG, hoping that each secret he extracted from the prisoners would help prevent the American invasion of Japanese soil that each US soldier feared since the first “Banzai!” was cried… Homeland: faces of the children he’d yet to bear charging at him with bamboo spears by the thousand.

8.6.1945: two of my grandparents’ nieces died on their way to school; midwives to the apocalypse. Their aunt died soon after of leukemia. Those left behind would be known as hibakusha; atomic survivors. No one escapes the fallout…

Across the demon-proof bridge stands the Guardian of the Fallout. I can’t look at Japan without seeing him. Karma doesn’t have a half-life.

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