A Spirited Museum (A Poem)

By Joyce Jacobo

[Author’s Note: I’ve seen several videos on the Studio Ghibli Museum in Japan, but I’ve yet to visit it (hopefully someday soon). Has anyone here gotten to experience its magic?]

There exists an enchanted wonderland

   deep within the city of Mitaka in Japan

                  reached by the crossing of a boundary

                      between city and forest

                           to glimpse a massive building

                               decorated in the bright colors

                                      of illustrated creativity

A huge      plush creature

    with an enormous belly and wide grin

         awaits in the ticket office out front

              known as Totoro

                              while high atop the roof

                                   an ancient humanoid robot stands guard

                                       even while vines cling to its long arms

                                            and wrap about its broad-shouldered frame

I have only heard of all its wonders

    dreamed up by a legendary animation studio

       whose creations reside there in various forms

                   …such as frescoes where witches fly on broomsticks

                                                                      pigs pilot red airplanes

                                                                          and fish turn into young girls

                              …or a room where children play inside and around

                                             a large cat shaped like a bus

                                                       (or perhaps a bus shaped like a cat)

                                      …or the miniature Saturn theater

                                                   where short films play for audiences

                                                              every day           

One floor to the next

     constructed from designs by an animator who

          yearned for a place where visitors could walk away

                  more at peace with themselves and the world

                        than before they came

                                                                  …almost like therapy

                                                                             through artistry

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