Special uses

In my copy of A Writer’s Reference
    can be found a section on
        “Special uses of the present tense”
including (as an example)
    a reference to
Masuji Ibuse’s
        Black Rain.
Incorrect usage of the
    past tense is helpfully crossed
out in vermilion,
    and the correct present tense
        appears—with carets—above.

Not   a child reached   for a pomegranate
But   a child reaches   for a pomegranate

Not   a moment later   he was dead
But   a moment later   he is dead.

I search for images using the words
    black rain
One stands out:
      a painting.

Surrounded by plumes of
    kanji    and hiragana,
    a mother smeared
by bright colors on
    her bare arms and legs
stands with a blackened baby
        on her back.

    I link to the source:
a Psychology Today article
    on art and trauma.

I learn
    who painted the image:
a survivor of the A-bomb
    attacks on Japan,
for which    there is a term—
not    there was a term—


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