My name is Travis Morgan.

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For Yosi on Vapor

Five days after my bicycle ride in the summer of 1987, before the stars came out, I read your letter. It made sense to me. Every morning I would read it until it became a concrete sound in my memory. Like the language you used in your letter, I would hear this same language in everyday sounds. Dogs barking in the background, a distant train, bubbling brooks, frogs croaking, it was no longer just noise.

Rain and thunder were just the beginning of that boiling cauldron that turned ocean waves into a whistling rainbow. Even that following cave that echoed footsteps couldn’t hide the complimenting wooden beats outside. Crafty starlings fell apart pitter-pattering to the rhythm of the trees before I read that letter. Only now, could I understand and appreciate the movement of their flight. Recollecting, it was all about texture, wandering bumps in something more than just vapor. Do you remember the sound of that splash of sake between our maki and beer? In cheer, it swished and bubbled and spilled over as our glasses collided. Needing some rest after so much food and drink, I slept under the stars that night. Grandpa visited me the next morning and I told him everything about the kingdom of frogs. Some, but not all, can hear the music.

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