‘The Night of the Stain’, from “A Seasoning of Lust”

Japanese Lovers

Japanese Lovers


Izumi hid in the willow greenery

cascading to the ground.

Hair of blackbird gloss

Trailing in the grass

Black and green tangled

In the layers of her hems.

Her maid searched for her,

Full of duty to her mistress.

These peaceful moments now rare.

“My Lady! I found the most beautiful

Robe in the bottom of a chest.

It will be perfect for your wedding.”

Yes, her wedding.

(Better she shave her head and become a nun)

Izumi parted the willow,

Looked without interest,

Her maid holding

A pale jade silk kimono

Embossed tarnished silver embroidery,

Seed pearls gleaming from

Gossamer folds.

Izumi’s breath caught in her throat.

Hands trembling

She opened the kimono.

There it was, faded with time-

A blood stain.

He was dead now, her greatest love.

Closing her eyes

She remembered his face,

His hair black as a raven,

His sandalwood perfume, still faintly trapped

In the jade bo silk.

Through tears leaking

From shadowed lids,

She remembered that night-

The night of the stain,

When locked in his powerful arms

She screamed out—

Scattering the servants listening outside the shoji.

She had bled from

The strength of their passion.

Now she was to marry an old man,

Arranged through the court.

Scandal and poverty, Ah!

The two banes of life.

She would marry in the stained kimono.

It wouldn’t matter anymore.

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2011-2015

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5 Responses to “‘The Night of the Stain’, from “A Seasoning of Lust””

  1. Grace Says:

    Beautiful Jane ~ I remember this from long ago ~


  2. ladynyo Says:

    Hello Grace~ It’s so good to hear from you! How are you? And thank you, yes, I wrote this back in…oh, 2009? this series?

    I de-erotized it a bit for this blog, and there are a few other pieces of this series I am trying to figure out whether to post or not…LOL!

    Are you still at d’verse? I miss all the poets and it’s time I shift gears and go back.

    Thank you, Grace, and let’s keep in touch.

    Hugs! Jane


  3. Caliban's Sister Says:

    I love this poem; loved it the first time I read it in your book, which sits on my nightstand. Happy New Year Jane. Love CS


  4. ladynyo Says:

    Hello CS! Thank you for reading and commenting.

    And Happy New Year to you!’

    I’m trying to gather these more Japanese tales for the blog, but keep getting distracted. Am trying to edit/rewrite two books at the same time, and that isn’t good. LOL!

    Hope the best comes from this year for both of us.

    Love, Jane


  5. Caliban's Sister Says:

    Me too. xoxoxox


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