As narrated by a boy named Kouryuu to his faithful companion the broom, this piece captures the naked ambition and commonplace gripes of a humble temple sweeper (not!).
Dedicated to the dead bird in the 4th chapter of “four things”, a wonderful piece by the author formerly known as missed-fortune
My Dreams – When I Grow Up
/As narrated by a boy named Kouryuu /- to his faithful companion the broom
How time goes by. It is now autumn, and the autumn air carries with it a gentle breeze, in which golden leaves  dance gracefully as they leave their home on the trees in the monastery courtyard.
Why did they plant so many of the trees there in the first place?
Falling leaves = more sweeping duties for me, the temple /mascot/.
Note the sarcasm in my voice as I intoned the word “mascot”. Servant is more like it. Now don’t take me wrong. I do not mind serving - as long it is my beloved master the Great Koumyou Sanzo I am waiting on, be it preparing his drinks, cleaning his pipe, scrubbing his back, providing a listening ear to his droning afternoon speech - which no one (including myself) understands a word of … such as:
“Why do the paper planes fly only in blue sky?”
I keep quiet, despite the disturbing thoughts at the edge of my mind:
Why, master, surely a learned man such as you is familiar with the law of aerodynamics. Gray sky = rain = damp paper = too much weight = soggy pieces of paper on the ground
Dark sky = night = you and that nasty-looking colleague of yours serenading the moon, and then … urm …. (I took a peep at you both once, may Buddha forgive me) = no paper planes
Wait, I am still in the middle of the list. Ah yes. I also hold the all-important responsibility of clearing away those blasted paper planes, lest pesky health inspectors from Chou-An ever find our temple a breeding ground for moss and pests, and take it into their mind to impose a hefty fine on us for violating health standards.
Not to mention the mess in my Master’s room waiting to be cleaned up after the visits from his partner in moon-serenading activities.
Frankly, I do not mind these at all.
I also do not mind those busybody pedestrian monks who love to whisper stuff about me behind my back. After all, having spent my whole life in this place, I can empathize with the boredom born from the everyday sameness of the monastery life - hence the relief and entertainment value of gossips. Some of what they say is true anyway. I was picked up from the river, and I/ am/ smarter than the rest of them. As for the other stuff, it does not hurt anyone if those monks really think that I am more than a mere pupil to my Master, or more than a mere friend to the talisman specialist Shuei.
Koumyou is indeed more than a Master to me. He is a father in everything but name.
As for that other guy, urgh… well, perhaps I will have to find the time to sit down for a good discussion about my non-commitment policies and aversion to not being in control. Just to let him understand that despite the flying rumors about the relationship between my Master and Ukoku Sanzo, I have not /been trained to /be to anyone what my Master is reputed to be to Ukoku.
Look at those leaves, dancing merrily on the ground. Mocking me, the boy who would have to sweep them into a pile so that they can be scattered all over the courtyard again the next day - hence providing me, Kouryuu the temple mascot, with real day-to-day job security.
I await the day when someone will
prepare my drinks,
scrub my back,
listen to me spouting some nonsense,
(I have taken a liking to the little Non-Attachment verse lately - I am perfecting my nuances and diction in reciting that verse so that I may impress people, a lot of people, with it one day.)
pick up my paper planes after me,
(In the privacy of my miserable little room, I am experiencing with more streamlined and elegant designs these days, yes, for the same reason I am practicing the verse.)
clean my pipe for me.
(On second thought, strike this one off the list. It’s too troublesome having to fill and refill the thing now and then. Guess I have to take up some other vice instead.)
Enough talking to myself already. Let’s get down to work, my friend.
~ Owari ~
 Haha! At least it’s not Goku’s orbs we’re talking about here. To H., there is one and only one golden orb. It’s called the Sun (and no, it’s NOT Konzen’s hair either). Anyone saying otherwise is a heretic I say, a heretic!
I don’t know whether it is Kouryuu x broom or Kouryuu x leaves here. (Still can’t write anything even remotely serious on the older and more bitter version of the boy – too deep, and too dark a psyche even for H.)
And I know that I’m risking my soul by writing this piece. Because now I owe Goku a one-shot, just so I can claim to be “fair” to our foursome.