Washed Ashore: Memories and Regrets on a Tokyo Beach

I really don’t like walking to the beach, especially on dull summer days, when the wet rain hits my chest and makes me unable to breathe. A shirt is washed and worn, worn and washed, over and over again, like a miserable pale sun attached to a confused body, wasting its warmth in vain. But people like me have a cold heart. It always beats alone, coldly, like silent raindrops, making no sound at all. The pocket of my jacket on the left always hangs down, because there is a mobile phone inside, a past number that has never been deleted, and a disconnected profile picture that is always gray, all of which contain the epitome of the first half of my life. The earphone cord was blown up by the wind, and a sad song was still playing in it, and a miserable wind blew through the hair, eyebrows, and trembling lips and teeth. In those melodies that I am almost tired of listening to, there are always a few faint rays of pain leaking out, like spider webs that permeate the surroundings, overwhelmingly wrapping around the cold, blue-white fingers.

I said that I no longer want to be attached to this city. It is always absorbing my energy, as if it wants to crush my long life into a compressed biscuit, giving it the taste of chewing wax. Does life also have a shelf life? Who will eat my compressed cookies? Will that person leave a small piece to feed my cat? The apartment I rented in Tokyo is due to expire in three months. After that, I still have a second-hand piano that I don’t know what to do with. Will it be sold at a low price? It seems that the granddaughter of the old landlady has just started learning piano. I met her new music theory teacher in front of her house last week. She looked very young, almost the same as me. If I had persisted in reading the book to the end, would I have been like her?

I question myself all the time, especially on those winter mornings when I feel hungry. It seems that these nonsensical questions, seemingly bizarre, can lead to a detour into the maze of frustration. I didn’t have much free time for myself, and they were all used up in a hurry. Among the hair that fell when I got up, and the few black flowers around my eyes, they were like spiritual biscuits that had been eaten. To satisfy every hunger. Sometimes, I’m walking on a pedestrian bridge by the seaside and see a melted street sign standing next to a bus stop in the distance. They are colorful, like expired and wrinkled candy wrappers, clinging to the steel and cement skin. One day, when I grow old, will I become like this? My heart is still sweet, but no one tastes it anymore. Everyone has gone to lick the bone-gnawing sourness of time.

So sometimes, I would suddenly stop and look down through the railing of the overpass, sinking my eyes to the bottom of the sea, submerged in the dark waves. When a faint coldness ran up my frightened limbs, it seemed like I was experiencing it again. A life of joys and sorrows. The rainy season is so long, like endless memories. Whenever I want to jump in desperately, those waves will push me back invariably, pushing me back to a world full of suffering. I think my sadness is an indescribable nothingness, but it does flow in the potholes under my feet, revealing the true innocence of ever, forever young and forever blind. Suddenly, it was as if some partings that were no longer mentioned suddenly appeared from the long escape, like bright stars breaking through the long clouds, scattered brightly on the shore, and gathered into countless shining little crescents. A gentle ripple appeared in the darkening night, like a lonely wrinkle, slowly and quietly rubbing away the stubborn clouds, revealing the blooming old scars and a few distant reflections.

My best friend is long gone and I will never see her again.

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