Japan's New Normal May 24: A Found Poem

(Adapted from Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's May 14th Press Conference by the Prime Minister regarding the Novel Coronavirus)


Japan's New Normal: A Found Poem
by Aaron Paulson

[Opening Statement]
make a full-fledged start
creating a new normal
in the age of the coronavirus.

We would like
to conduct business at full swing.

We would like
to create a new normal for everyday life.

The virus will remain present.
In Hokkaido, in Germany, in Singapore, in Korea too,
just as people let down their guard,
the infection spreads in an instant.

This is the most frightening aspect of this virus.

We have three requests.

The first is to start little by little, step by step;
bring your regular day-to-day lives back gradually.

The second is to continue positive changes:
staggered commuting hours.
Continue these efforts into the future.

The third request is not to let down your guard.
Wash your hands,
maintain sufficient distance,
wear a mask.
Opt for outdoor over indoor settings
Avoid closed spaces.

Efforts by each
and every
are more

The world has yet to find any solution.
We must be ready for a long road ahead.
We will advance step by step
along the path
to a new normal
for everyday life
together with you.

I will end my remarks here.


Aaron Paulson is a long-term expat in Tokyo, Japan.