Monthly Archives: May 2015

(This article was originally published in Kyoto Journal Volume 82) Minaret of Jam – KJ82 Does the fate threatening the Minaret of Jam mirror the imminent fate of Afghanistan? “At a corner between cliffs, the minaret was there, straight and tapering as a candle or a beautifully rolled umbrella, etched from top to bottom with patterns, ribands and bands and medallions, cut in the hard-baked brick whose biscuit colour showed light against… Read More

 The Divine Sword of the Bear Hunters of Northern Japan Over Golden Week I had a chance to take a trip deep into the mountains of northern Akita on a quest to find a rare, hand-forged hunting knife – the Matagi Nagasa. I recently learned of the Matagi culture of bear hunters in northern Japan and how they use a special hunting knife when they go off into the snowy mountains for several… Read More