ONE POEM – Eugene Ryan

Photo by Phuong Uyen Vo Hoang on Unsplash


Our joke ran
that I would hand him the ladybird kite,
him in his little black windbreaker,
and I’d plead with him to hold on,
and he’d smile like all the world wasn’t enough,
like the endless beach could not
contain him,
and he’d wait,
to be fair,
until I’d pitched it up
and then he’d loose his grip
and watch it fly.
Could be that it would dawdle as the spool unplayed,
but if it took,
Jesus it would go,
and me, all out, I’d give it everything
and it was beautiful, you know,
if it mussed its tail upon the dunes,
and if I jumped just right,
I could catch the wind,
and bring it back for him.

Eugene Ryan is a Londoner of Irish roots who first came to Japan in 1994. Since then, he has lived in Okinawa, Tokyo, Nagasaki and Toyohashi, where he now lives. He currently teaches at a university in Aichi prefecture. His research interest is currently focused on using role playing games to help autistic children improve their communicative confidence. His poetry was previously published in Rat’s Ass Review, The Font, Tokyo Poetry Journal and White Enso. He loves gardening, sea swimming and time with friends. You can find more of his poetry at

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