3RD Month

a poem by
BERTRAM ALLAN MULLIN | Teacher + Writer


 I moved to Japan to work on a novel about a Japanese couple, yet living there has inspired many other works of mine including “3RD Month,” which is a very personal piece.

Photo by Fancy Crave

 
MOVED to Japan
Northern Nihon
           Hokkaido
Known for the freezing snow
 
1st Month: worked with a psychopath
“Not just your trainer, your boss, your
          everything
Always vacuum from this corner or else”
 
Sixteen-hour shifts
One calendar day
     off
Included harassing calls at midnight
 
Loon wanted
Blood
           No
Positivity equated to sanity
 
Sightseer among unknown kanji
Slurped delicious ramen and . . .
            Matcha
Convenience stores sold sushi
 
2nd Month:
Forget nutcase            Found new work
            Nagoya
Employer paid half flight and stay
 
Loved teaching high school.
Colleague asked, “Did you see the little bear?”
            Araiguma
We learned the word raccoon in both languages
 
Spectacular temple in Yagoto
Greeted by giant Buddha
            Minato
Alongside my twenty-two Japanese share mates
 
3rd Month:
Rhythmic parades from doorway
            Venders
Barbecued octopus
 
First time experienced
Okonomiyaki               cabbage pancakes
            surprise
“Those meatballs had tentacles: takoyaki.
 
Fireworks from my rooftop,
Locals called: “Fire flowers.”
            Harbor
Nagoyako, whiffed salty sea
 
Waterpark west,
Trip with new friends to Mie Prefecture
          ah
Nagashima Spa Land
 
Next destination could be
“Miss home?”
      anywhere
“There already . . . within”

BERTRAM ALLAN MULLIN

BERTRAM ALLAN MULLIN

Teacher + Writer

Bertram Allan Mullin or BAM’s works can be found in about one hundred publications—many stories being featured or contest winners. Crack the Spine added him to their Wordsmith Series for “Kindness and Decency,” which is in their XIV anthology. Hellbound Books has his horror, “Zeitgeist,” in their Shopping List Anthology. BAM’s non fiction, “Tsunami,” is featured with BellaOnline. “Untimely Demise” appears in Flash Fiction Magazine’s first anthology. His novel, Diaries of Karma, won the WildSound Competition in 2015. BAM teaches kids English in Japan. He also helps other writers when possible.

Enjoy more of Bertram’s work at bamwrites.com.