Itadakimasu

Simmering pork broth over a low flame

Patiently waiting for the right time to emerge

An old man behind a counter fans the flames

Rekindled coals sizzle as skewered juices drop and kiss the glow

Glasses clink, followed closely by the sound of a smooth pour

Filling the room with a hungering anticipation of what is next to come

Laughter, conversation and chatter dance in unison

Ingredients meant to intermingle, an umami of a different sort

The first sip, the first bite, the first taste

The eyes and mind already feasting, the palate waiting patiently for its turn

Friends and family gathering together

Savor and gratitude just moments away

Gomenasai

The drift that immediately follows

Invisible, yet felt

The crevice fills with a lingering palpable silence

That a wave of a hand cannot brush away

The air turns a different shade

And for a split second

Everything stops

Waiting for your reply

Ja Mata

The shape of a circle

Best describes you and me

A connection without an end

Our followed paths

Always reconnecting, eventually

Our separate ways, we go

Time lapses, without concern

Pathways converge in time

So parting ways

Is never a sad goodbye

Farewells always accompanied with a smile

Intuitively we both understand

Circles, our friendship

Until then

Ja mata

Sakura

Floating somersaults take their time

Allowing a quick glance to turn into a long gaze

Simplicity’s breath painted in mid air

Captured in a photograph that lays to rest in my memory

Tucked away, later for safekeeping

Waiting for the right moment to resurface when needed most

To remind me of this feeling of beauty

Balancing the scales in hope’s favor, just enough

To allow me to endure and continue moving forward