August 6, 2011: Tomoe Natori

Tomoe Notori was born in Tokyo and raised by the anti-war, anti-nuclear power activists. She immigrated to the US in 1988, living in the Four Corners region.

An estimate of the radioactive emissions from Fukushimais   “Uranium equivalence of 20 A-bombs”  and the fallout “1000 times H-bomb peak”. Discussions on maximum allowable levels of radionuclides or orders of dangers by species or isotopes can wait until tomorrow. My heart is filled with childhood memories of elders’ stories elders’ stories , photos comic books , movies about Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Today is the 66th memorial of A-bomb attack in Hiroshima and friends and family members traveled to the City to keep the vigil, a fire that’s not been extinguished in the collective heart of the world’s pacifists. I see a flood of posts in the Internet communities about Hiroshima, and each one of them touches this raw spot in me, burned when I learned about the suffering of A-bomb victims.  This spot powers my trust in knowing that there is no justice in wars and nuclear powers, that there is no safe dose of radiation, however low it may be. It surprises me at times how my trust in knowledge doesn’t come from science or rules set by authorities but from the childhood memories of stories, watching the elders treasuring moments of peace, so ephemeral and conditional.

Have we told enough stories ofHiroshimato children? Did we rewrite history or hide pictures? Have we treasured peace and work to solve conflicts in peaceful manner? Have we practiced compassion for the suffering of others or questioned rules that are not helping to ease suffering? Have we kept children home time to time, to talk about these things? To show them that’s more important than school?




The Dead Little Girl

Nazim Hikmet


It is me knocking at your door
– at how many doors i’ve been
But no one can see me
Since the dead are invisible.

I died at Hiroshima
that was ten years ago
I am a girl of seven
Dead children do not grow.

First my hair caught fire
then my eyes burnt out
I became a handful of ashes
blown away by the wind.

I don’t wish anything for myself
for a child who is burnt to cinders
cannot even eat sweets.

I’m knocking at your doors
aunts and uncles, to get your signatures
so that never again children will burn
and so they can eat sweets.


Join discussion: leave a comment