KAGEMUSHA (The Shadow Warrior)
by Linda Ehrlich
A thief, yet he looks like a lord.
(Yellow sun, centered in a red sky.)
Children and animals can tell the difference,
still the double takes chances.
Shadow of the shadow.
There can be no mistakes.
When the shadow warrior takes up his banner, real men fall in battle.
Riderless horses rush forward
in a landscape of carnage.
Draped in white, the shadow warrior watches helpless.
He alone tastes victory
or its shadow which is the same.
(inspired by Kagemusha (The Shadow Warrior, dir. KUROSAWA Akira, Japan, 1980)
Linda C. Ehrlich, associate professor at Case Western Reserve University