Last winter, I noticed that my post on a book by Pearl S. Buck, The Big Wave, was being frequented with some regularity. I wrote about this book shortly after the earthquake and tsunami devastated Japan in 2011. The original edition has extraordinary woodcuts that exemplify the Japanese people as well as the forcefulness of nature. My review of the book is here.
I was moved when a comment was left by Yuko, asking if I could scan copies of the prints in the book. Yuko, a Japanese citizen, has been working with a crisis support group who are helping with children effected by the tsunami. She needed copies of the illustrations for a school project she was hoping to do with the children. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to locate the book at the time. When my son-in-law Tom overheard me talking about trying to find it, he quietly went to his laptop and quickly located a copy in a nearby library. Before he had a chance to obtain the book, Yuko let me know that a friend of hers in California had purchased The Big Wave, I believe through Ebay, and it was on its way to her in Japan.
We truly live in a global community.
There are still so many people displaced. One can only imagine how children are faring. I hope to sometime post an interview with Yuko about the ongoing aftermath of this horrible disaster and the good things being done. I also hope that she can share how The Big Wave has been used to help the children of the tsunami through their recovery and of the work that Tokyo Support Team is doing on their behalf.
I can’t help but wonder how author Pearl S. Buck, and Hiroshige and Hokusai, the artists,would feel about the impact their words and art hold.
If you are reading, Yuko, please know that prayers and good wishes are still being sent to all of Japan. To my friends in New Zealand, still witnessing the devastation at Christchurch and to those here at home in Joplin, New Orleans and in all of those places where nature has wreaked havoc, you are thought of as well.