黙祷 – In Remembrance

Has it already been one year? 

Mokutou

 One year later, we haven’t forgotten.
A single day does not go by that all those affected by
the Tohoku Quake in 2011 aren’t in my heart.

For all of you who might have lost sight,
for whom “life has returned to normal”,
Today remember that for tens of thousands of people,
life hasn’t, and can’t, return to “normal”.

The aftereffects of the Tohoku Quake continue,
and countless people are living them, now.
And I think it naive to assume that this is some
distant condition that doesn’t, and won’t, affect you.

What I’m saying is, and as contrived as it may sound,
the tragedy of March 11th 2011 so very much so made it
clear to me exactly how imperative it is that we understand
that our lives are not separated by oceans, continents, cultures,
colors, customs, language, mileage, or anything;

Rather, that you are alive at this time, on this earth,
at the same moment as these people and such events,
itself shows us the simple fact that there is no “them” and “us”.

A year ago today, along the eastern coast of Japan,
all the rush and rage of elements was so deafening.
A year later, today, everywhere throughout the entire world
let us offer a mokutou, a silent prayer,

so that the sound of silence as we, fellow human-beings unite in
our prayer for strength and courage and hope
is also deafening.

Recommended Reading

Actor Yamamoto Tarou speaks out against nuclear activity (JT) 

Lone holdout in black-out area (JT)

Books on the quake (JT)

Full listing of quake-related articles at Japan Times (JT)

Stats and data here

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