by Patricia Furstenberg
Shh, hums the rice, swaying with the wind, Whoosh, sings the breeze, warm and mild. Cling-cling-cling, the silver bell sings along While the bicycle runs along the road. A basket in the front. What’s inside? The air is sweet with cherry scent, The boy is careful at the bend. He knows the road, his eyes on basket – Where something small sits in this racket. First time out, In the basket. And now and then a nose pops up, Sniffs just above the basket, plump. A cherry blossom petal landed in the punnet? It grew paws, tail, and purrs when you stroke it? Has whiskers too, As white as snow. The orange head looks left and right; It rains, the rice smells fruity Yet no rain drips on the small crown The boy holds an umbrella. And on and on Their bicycle they ride. The boy hums with a smile, calming the warm bundle And every now and then he strokes the silky nuzzle. And quite so often, it is said, They ride their bicycle to town and back home again. Where they cook, The two of them. On autumn days, fragrant and cool, They ride to pick up mushrooms. And when the first snow hugs the ground They ride it still, is rumored – The boy, a silver bicycle And… cat. What keeps them cycling, rain or shine? Or during snow or weather fine? Is it the never-ending field, the road that stretches infinite? Or is it that they love how wind through hair and fur articulates? And how and air smells sweet and fragrant Just for the two of them, Jun and Haku. This poem was inspired by “How I trained my cats”, a video by Japanese vlogger and YouTube-er JunsKitchen – enjoy!