Shaman Dancing in the Sun

Trip Start Sep 08, 2010
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Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of Japan  , Tohoku,
Wednesday, October 20, 2010

I wrote previously about the haystacks; the origami arrangements around vertical poles that stood, so I described, like rows of shaman caught mid-dance. We have just had an opportunity to inspect some of these up close and it transpires that the machine in the fields is not a combine harvester but merely a reaping machine, and the straw stacks still have their ears of rice attached. It is predominantly then the rice that is left out to dry and the purpose of the origami is to arrange the sheaves so that the rice is always on the outside to dry faster.
More than this, the stacks do have a great character but I would describe them now as great hairy monsters whose eyes and mouths are concealed in folds of matted, plaited hair. They are truly the origin of some terrifying anime character. And yet these monsters are not designed to scare people or their little sons and daughters for they are good ogres. Unpredictable and hairy, yes, but good, and their purpose is to scare off some other predator, ward off some other evil. In this sense, as with shaman they are both wild and dangerous but ultimately protective and healing.
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