Yuki's hands flew up and down at her side, her right thumb rubbing quickly against all her fingers, flying over them over and over again as if to check off the urgent questions in her mind. Her hands plunged into the fountain as if to gain strength, as if to find the words.

Who was fixing dinner for the farm hands? Why did Sophie sleep on the living room windowsill? What was she waiting for? Why didn't Anna come home from school with Amy? Who was getting them snacks, the nori and rice and sour plum umaboshis that they loved so much?

At first, Sophie tried to explain--both in English and Japanese. Slowly enunciating the words, as if bringing them back over the depths of an unfathomable ocean, she would try to help Yuki recall each flake of memory. There were no farmhands--they had sold the farm about 20 years ago after Ichiro died. Sophie was watching and waiting for Anna to come home from Berkeley. She would stay at the window until Anna came home. No one knew where she was. Amy went to college now, too, to the University of Colorado right here. Amy could get her own snacks. Amy and Anna had always hated umaboshis. It was only Yuki who really liked them. Would she like one now?

Yuki would nod frantically, her hands plucking at Sophie's sleeves as though they pulling her memory out of the thin cotton threads. Her hands worked tirelessly, as urgently as they had before harvest, racing to beat the winds and snow. Her hands stopped only long enough to place food in her questing mouth, or to plunge into the fountain in the living room, as if to quench their own unceasing thirst.

snow falls / thick in / urgent flurries / an individual only / from sky to ground / crystal edges / melt to / murky puddles

the word is / the sound / of water / dripping from/ ancient symbols / tiny particles / of merging / realities

Follow us all: Amy/Anna, Sophie/Yuki, Kit/Richard, minor characters or sift through water leavings and river journeys.