Thursday, May 27, 2010

Thorn Flower

Reading today from something I want to share. The book is one I bought in Japan nine or ten years ago, one recommended by my sister, who also spent a few years in old Nihon. It’s called, Road of the Tinkling Bell: Paintings, Poems and Essays, created and written by Tomihiro Hoshino.

Tomihiro Hoshino is a Japanese man from Gunma Prefecture (near Tokyo) who suffered a near fatal gymnastics accident as a young man, and since that time has been unable to move his arms and legs. He learned during nine years in the hospital how to write and paint holding a brush in his mouth. Mr Hoshino’s simple and uncomplicated work is pure and beautiful, a view of life and its small, common rewards through the pen and the eyes of an extraordinary poet-artist.

Here are his words about a thorn flower.

Both flowers and thorns

emerge from the same point

By and by the flowers drop off

but the thorns remain

It’s like me

In my heart

I too feel a thorn

The book is page after page of wonderful paintings, exquisite stories.

In a later book by Mr Hoshino he tells the incredible story of his life, and in that book, too, includes many of his poems. A poem from his book, Love From the Depths


My immature pen

Could never capture one-thousandth

Of the beauty of this flower

But I want to keep it in my heart

Along with the affection of “N” who

Labored to raise it

Cut it

And brought it to me

I want it to bloom forever within me

Both books mentioned are available, but might be a bit pricey, especially the second one. If you get the chance, do read or look at anything from Tomihiro Hoshino, an extraordinary man.

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Oak Hill, Florida, United States
A longtime expat relearning the footwork of life in America