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Troubled Wise Man of Japan

I ventured alone in my frail boat and fell asleep. The boat drifted east, to the shore of the sweetest spot in the world. In the bright morning light, I found myself in the shadow of Fusan, the Wonder Mountain, and I knew I had come to Horaizan, the Isle of the Blest....

Atchuwitlas the Face-Changer

I had been expecting the young man who came to me with his ruined, scarred face. I knew he would want a face-change. I suspected that the freckled mask hanging on my wall would be the right fit for him, so I took it down and hid it. It wouldn't be an easy face to...

Horse Who Flies Over the Sea

A giant kept me in me in his stable until a fellow named Ian came along and led me out. He rode me over the sea to the island of Big Women, where we were met by sixteen lads. They were all eager to take me to the stable, but Ian said, "I myself will put her in and see...

Returning Husband

When I came home from my journey, I saw my wife out in the garden with another man. I was about to shoot him with my bow and arrow when I remembered something an old man had said to me when we were drawing water from a well: "Patience is the first step on the road to...

Prince Loved by the Undine Queen

I spent seven years living under the lake with the ravishing green-haired queen. She wanted to marry me, but I only thought of Abeille. "It is only Abeille I wish to marry," I said repeatedly. "Let me go home. Please." I might as well have been talking to the wind....

Urashimataro

I do not know where I belong anymore. My parents, my children, their children, are dead. I have seen their graves and with my own fingers I have felt their names crumbling away under the moss. Where is my home? Not on the land. Not beneath. I open the jeweled box that...

Prince Who Stays At Home

I found everything that I needed right at home. The toads under the castle gave me the treasure that was my birthright. They gave me the finest carpet and the finest ring that anyone could imagine, and why? Because they were originals. Nothing derivative. Even my wife...

Good Magician

One doesn't often meet a man weeping in the underworld. When I asked him why he was weeping, he said he wanted to return to earth. I told him that I would carry him back to the surface on my own back if he would protect my children at night. I explained that a...

The Wooden Wife

I came back to life because my husband would not be comforted after my death. He made a life-sized doll in my image, and every night when he came home, he talked to her. So wood turned to flesh, but I warned him not to touch me until we had returned to our people. If...