When people ask about the island, I say
my Okinawa was 48 inches
high—we went to a fish market,
but all I could see was a barrel
full of oysters that squirted at me.
These are half-lies—I cannot see
oysters in my memories, or a fish market, or
Okinawa. I only know I would always lose
my way in the botanical gardens.
The mongoose killed the habu, and I watched.
I ate something pink and sticky wrapped in leaves,
this was Hinamatsuri. I danced on a rooftop with paper fans.
Okinawa fades each year, until I am left with
only the smell of green tea and tatami mats.