Gifts galore at JA Museum of San Jose

  Furoshiki (Japanese Wrapping Cloth) ($8 to $18) Sure, it’s a centuries-old tradition that was once used as a means to carry necessities, but the lucky recipient of these furoshiki are sure to be stylin’! These furoshiki represent a modern take on the art, and are premade with ribbon ties, perfect for a quick wrap […]

S.F. jazz club transforms into one-day Japanese cultural center

Yoshi’s Jazz Club and Japanese Restaurant opened its doors to the public on Oct. 1 to feature its fourth annual “The Flip Side of Yoshi’s,” a day of Japanese art and culture. Nearly 250 people packed the venue, located just outside of San Francisco’s Japantown, to experience the art and spirit of Japanese culture. The […]

Life, nature, humanity and haiku

COOL MELONS — TURN TO FROGS! THE LIFE AND POEMS OF ISSA Story and translations by Matthew Gollub, illustrated by Kazuko G. Stone (New York: Lee and Low Books, 1998, 40 pp., $9.95, paperback) Poignant English translations of Issa’s haiku, the same poem written in Japanese calligraphy, accompanied by biographical material about the life of […]

A visit to the White House

  The following commentary features reflections by poet and author Hiroshi Kashiwagi upon being invited to “An Evening of Poetry” at the White House, which showcased the impact of poetry on American culture.   It was a windfall event, unexpected and surreal, especially the jaw-dropping reaction of the people. “You mean the White House?” “Yes.” […]

Ann Muto to read at JAMsj Feb. 12

SAN JOSE — Ann Muto, author of “Open Passage,” will hold a poetry reading and book signing Saturday, Feb. 12 at the Japanese American Museum of San Jose (JAMsj), 535 North Fifth St. in San Jose’s Japantown from 1 to 2 p.m. For 20 years, Muto did not know her family lived in a concentration camp […]

Issei’s poetry book a familial work of art

At a glance, Shizue Harada’s life story is one that many Nikkei will find familiar: She immigrated from Japan to the United States in search of a better life, was incarcerated in a wartime American concentration camp, was a wife, mother and grandmother, and for many years worked as a seamstress. Harada documented a number […]

BOOK REVIEW: Kashiwagi’s perspective, style shines

OCEAN BEACH By Hiroshi Kashiwagi (San Mateo, Calif.: Asian American Curriculum Project, Inc., 2010, 98 pp., $12 paperback) For more than half a century now, Hiroshi Kashiwagi has been quietly building himself an eclectic and accomplished artistic career as a poet, playwright and performer. With the recent publication of his first collection of poetry, “Ocean […]

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