An inspiring new poem from Glyn Edwards that Wales Arts Review publishes as part of our When this is Over: Essays for a World Without Masks series of pieces looking at the world as it is now and how it might be.
After an allied air in WW2, in which he lost his left arm and entire regiment, Shigeru Mizuki was ‘ordered to die’ by the Japanese command. He defied this ‘honourable death’, returned to Japan in disgrace, and began learning how to draw again. With his weaker right hand, Mizuki became a leading anime artist, specialising in the yōkai genre that allowed him to explore conflict through supernatural characters, rather than through heroes of specific ethnicities, or villains of a particular race. When he was asked about his strength resolve in face of so much loss, he replied, ‘There is no excuse for not trying.’
‘There is no excuse’ is a concrete poem by Glyn Edwards’ second collection In Orbit. His first collection, Vertebrae, was published by The Lonely Press. All of the images are by Shigeru Mizuki. The music was written by Jonny Fowlds.