by James L.S. Carter
Wagtailing thro' back alleys to get there,
The errant Rose-gang Ronin's deviant course
Fails to alarm the rumour of his force; ;
The thrill of evening lanterns whiffs the air,
The mistress banters while the beauties mute
Stand in a line, w' empty thoughts in mind:
Faces you want to penetrate behind,
Buy and possess the one you find most cute.
The kettle boils, and clogs are doffed at doors
Sliding apart. Hot water is prepared;
Kimonos are removed, and bodies bared.
Bathed, the wakashu crouches on all fours.
The ripples of the froth, The whole scene seems
One long sick dream where are no dreams.
**** The name of a shop where in the Edo period (1603-1868 ) of Japanese history clients could purchase the services of wakashu (male rent boys)
James's poem was published on page 14 of the Second Annual James Kirkup Poetry Competition Anthology in 2011, by Red Square Press, James won second prize in this prestigious competition, He is one of the finest of Scottish classical poets