Ode To Bleach

Somewhere,
In some alternative world,
In some other dimension,
Accessible through,
Our imagination,
A young man named Ichigo,
Japanese for Strawberry,
In reference to his yellow hair,
Is surrounded by friends and family,
Is fighting for the World of the Living,
Is continuing his duties,
As a Substitute Soul Reaper,
For the Soul Society.

This young man,
Now 17,
Has clearly defined enemies,
Knows exactly who he is,
Knows exactly what he wants to do,
Has a well defined place,
In what he sees as reality.
The rules are simple…
Fight your enemies,
Get stronger,
So you can defend your friends,
Your family,
And your world.

I wish things in my life,
Were that crystal clear,
I wish my strength,
Was just as measurable,
I wish my reality,
And my place in it,
Were just as simply defined.
More than these I wish,
I was surrounded by friends,
Supported by family,
With no doubts about who I am,
Or why I am here.

I guess that is what stories are for,
To transport us,
For a few brief moments,
To some other place,
Perhaps better, perhaps worse,
With clearly defined,
Roles and rules,
Because what we call real life,
What we define for ourselves,
As “reality”,
Is never so simple,
And clearly defined.

Ichigo’s story has ended,
And at the same time it continues,
I can visit his world at any time,
Even though I know how his story ends,
Because there I think I find a kindred spirit,
Someone who fights to defend and protect,
Who is constantly growing and improving,
And inspires those around him to do the same.

I know he inspires me, on my own journey,
As I try to figure out who I am,
And just why the hell I am here,
Where the boundaries are,
What is really real, and what is not,
As I look for friends and companions,
Or open myself to receiving those,
Who will grow and walk with me,
As we all pursue our individual paths,
Up the same infinitely large mountain,
To someday, hopefully, reach the top,
That far off pinnacle, where we will know,
With the same clarity of characters like Ichigo,
The truth of things, and the truth of ourselves.

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