I read the words, 'Battle Royale'--
Read them, and I wrote you off.
Japan is the new Hollywood, and everybody wants some.
I don't; I don't want another Japanophile, either.

I foresaw the days of 'just trying' some anime:
Wandering samurai afternoons bleeding into cartoon schoolgirl nights.
The Cowboy Bepop poster on your wall
Did nothing to reassure me.

Your phone was old, and made in England,
And I thought, maybe; but no.
'Nori Nori Nori' is no ringtone
For a 20-something man.

And so I knew, we'd just be friends,
My crosswords alongside your sudoku,
My beginner's Spanish stilted as you count to 10,
'Ichi, ni, san...'

And I waited, as friends do,
To hear how the Code of the Samurai
Is threefold--how you've mastered an ancient fighting style--
Waited to discover your katana, your topknot, your sandals-with-socks...

I should have known you'd be a ninja.
You crept past my defences, under the cover of my prejudice;
I just like you.  And I fight it, with my own modern,
Unique fighting style.  It's worked so many times before.

And I try to hate the things you love;
But I can't see the chopsticks and sashimi,
Only you--Chronotrigger and Ghost in the Shell
Don't register at all.

And when I look at you, I know,

For you, I would learn Japanese,
And move to Tokyo.

(And I'd even remember it has 4 syllables.)

The End

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