Alive with the color of trade and Earth,
you felt like the center of the world.
Tattooed fingers weaved your story,
and the stencils sang your folk songs.
Warmongers watched you dye.
They sucked you of your hues one by one.
Eventually indigo was all that was left.
An ocean darkened by blood.
The hibiscus wilted under the 1945 sun,
and faux pigments found their way into your skin.
Pretty souvenirs for the Gaijin,
are your resilient flag of spiritual independence.