A Tale of Human Void
My name is Charles Barken. I was born in England in 1914, on a cold winter's day on the floor of my mother's art studio. In 1920 we relocated to America, where I grew up; separated and isolated because of my origins, my unconvincing demeanour and my false mannerisms. In 1935 I moved to Japan, to the mountains of the Gunma Prefecture; to escape the escalating war. I could speak not a lick of Japanese, save for pleasantries, so hardly associated myself with the outside world, preferring to withdraw into complete solidarity; fearing the boiling of the war would spill into my sanctuary, like milk into oats; destroying the foundations of my life. So dependant I became on this fear that when the war came to a close, I no longer had emotion to drive me.
In my desperation to find emotional redemption I travelled to Okinawa; one empty man in a sea of hopeless faces. The rest of my life is a void. I had a routine, manners, a personality I could apply like a kabuki actor applies face paint. I was