ABAlan Botsford serves as editor of Poetry Kanto, Japan’s oldest bi-lingual poetry journal. Author of the essay-dialogue-poetry collection Walt Whitman of Cosmic Folklore (Sage Hill Press 2010) as well as two poetry collections, mamaist: learning a new language (Minato no Hito 2002) and A Book of Shadows (Katydid Press 2003), he teaches at Kanto Gakuin University in Yokohama, Japan, and lives with his wife and son in Kamakura.


a mamaist heat

i was thrown into the white heat, the tumult and trial,
the ferment and turmoil, the flurry and disorder.
i was convulsed by and floundered in
the shivering and shuddering,
i ebbed and flowed, i waxed and waned,
i pumped in the swinging and fluctuating
to quiver in the sway
and flit in the pulse.
i pitched and plunged, i bobbed and weaved,
i tossed and tumbled from pillar to post,
side to side, round and round, in and out, up and down,
and now the ardor of the cheerful fire has me crackling,
thermally loose in the burning and fully alive in the blooming,
the blush of dawn, the glisten of night
gleaming and blazing in my blood,
gossamer and solid are the circuits of my heart.

a mamaist shot

The brain shot through
With Eros
Has a mind of its own
Were it opened for business
Where the heart shot through
With Eros
Is the lion among us
Alive and well
Fiercely loyal to
No bottom line but its own
The stomach shot through
With Eros
Hungry for Otherness while
The intestine shot through
With Eros
Absorbs the lessons