LOVE IS CALLING (2013), one of the two Infinity Mirror Rooms in Yayoi Kusama: Infinite Love, includes an audio recording in Japanese of the artist reciting her poem “Residing in a Castle of Shed Tears” (2010, revised 2012). The English translation reads:
“Residing in a Castle of Shed Tears”
by Yayoi Kusama
When the time comes around for people to encounter the end of their life
after many years have passed, death seems to be quietly approaching.
It was not really my style to be frightened of that.
In the shadows of my loved one, distress revisits me at the dead of night,
refreshing my memories.
Being in love with and longing for you, having locked myself up
in this “castle of shed tears.” Now may be the time for me to wander out into a place
where the guidepost points to the netherworld of life.
And the sky is waiting for me, attended by numerous clouds.
Overwhelmed by your tenderness that has always encouraged me,
from the depths of my heart, taking a path to “my wish for happiness,”
I have been searching all along
for the appearance of “love.”
Let me call out to the birds flying about in the sky.
I want to convey these feelings to them.
Over many long years, I have treaded a path with art as a weapon.
But during those days I endured
and hid the countless “despair,” “emptiness,” and “loneliness” in my heart.
Along the way there were times
when the fireworks of life “splendidly” adorned the sky,
dancing in the night sky in a myriad of colors.
I will never forget the exhilarating moment
when the fireworks sprinkled dust all over my body.
I would like to ask you,
Was the beauty of the end of one’s life nothing more than an illusion?
For having fulfilled my prayer for wanting to leave behind my beautiful footprints,
this is my message of love to you.