With Each Step

      by Michael Dylan Welch and Ryu Yotsuya

First published in Frogpond XXVII:3, November 2004, page 42. Reprinted in Hedgerow #120, Summer 2017, page 14. Originally written 22 October 2002, Kamakura, Japan. This may well have been the first rengay ever to be written in Japan.

crowded shop—
the toddler’s shoes
light up with each step                                                  Michael

       the wooden geta clacks
       under my 80-kilogram weight                                Ryu

drying seaweed . . .
a snorkeling flipper
blisters my heel                                                            Michael

sandals left
on a deserted cape—
ants carry red petals                                                    Ryu

       flung to the herb garden
       mud from my workboots                                       Michael

kicked barefoot
the soccer ball
arcs over the net                                                         Ryu