Synaesthesia Magazine Cities - Page 20

Vincent Kenny enjoys Japanese food, mid 90s Peter Engel-produced teen programming, and writing pulp horror. He is currently writing a story about a talking cat.

You really cannot comprehend the effects of atomic weaponry until you have endured the Peace Memorial Museum.

My own experience of Hiroshima, for what it’s worth, was not exemplified by the museum, or the many small and thoughtful memorial statues littered throughout the park, or even from books detailing the city’s sad history, but a single evening spent in the park.

As the sun was setting over Hiroshima, music issued from the concrete banks of the Ota River that runs through the centre of the Peace Memorial Park. An old man with a guitar was playing softly, and a few people, myself included, sat staring at nothing in particular as dusk settled in. The music was accompanied by the cries of the first evening cicadas, and the orange glow of the sunset danced among the ruins of the A-Bomb Dome so that it might once again be ablaze. The whole experience didn’t speak to me of death, or malaise, or the righteous anger some people appropriate to post-war Hiroshima. It spoke to me of a city, introspective and considerate from the weight of its past, preserving its legacy while looking towards the future.

A strange and dark tourist destination, one might say, but never has the spirit of a city spoken to me more than Hiroshima.