Great East Japan Earthquake Charity Reading: Shakin’ It Back at Infinity Books in Asakusa

attachment-536832681 Back in 2011, the local and expat artistic community alike wanted to do something to help the survivors of the March 11th earthquake/tsunami/nuclear crisis in the Tohoku region of northern Japan. Some staged charity events; others went north to volunteer with the cleanup. Some did both.

For my part, I read a short essay at a charity reading even, Shakin’ It Back, at What the Dickens in Ebisu. “In Bloom” was inspired by the bravery and self-sacrifice I witnessed in some of my students the day we had to evacuate the main school building and spend the night in the gym, uncertain, what lay ahead of us…

Now, three years later, clean-up and recovery efforts continue. As a fund-raising effort, some of the performers from the original Shakin’ It Back event have contributed their poems and prose pieces to an anthology, available as an ebook from

Two readings are being planned, both at Infinity Books‘ new brick-and-mortar location in Asakusa. The first event will raise funds for Support Our Kids, which sends Tohoku teens on homestays abroad. The second event will once again support Japan Heart, the original recipient of the What the Dickens event, which provides healthcare and life support to Tohoku survivors, as well as people in Myanmar and Cambodia.

The first reading is scheduled for Sunday, April 20th from 3 – 10 pm. The second reading will be in May (TBD).

I plan to be at one or the other – perhaps both! Hope to see you there!


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