For the young Kenji Takezo, the innocent surfer who inhabits this collection of poems, balance becomes more than just trying to stand on a wave. It is a way of surviving in a world as precarious as the ocean, a world constantly turning on itself.
Rick Noguchi's first book of verse possesses the important characteristics of a plural literature. A traditional ease of storytelling, magic, and an innocence which is the heavy authority for the other two. But there is something extra in these poems. It is an odd spirituality or sensitivity, not of style, but of experience. And as great Bohemian multiculturalist Franz Kafka said, 'It will have to stay with you.'
These spare, demotic lyrics ride with innocence, humility, humor, and doggedness. The Ancient, the Little, the constant Mariner: the human soul, as bare among the cultural wreckage as it always was, surfer of the primordial.
Rick Noguchi was born in Los Angeles and raised in Culver City. He holds an M.F.A. in creative writing from Arizona State University. His chapbook, The Wave He Caught, won the 1994 Pearl Editions Prize.